The most recommended food for babies from childbirth to about 6 months of age is breast milk. However, there are many situations where a mother is not able to exclusively breastfeed her newborn for 6 months and will need to compliment her child’s feeding. This is where baby formulas come in. Remember that the main drink for a baby from birth to 12 months is milk. Hence, apart from breast milk (which is the best milk for your baby), the only other milk that you can give your baby is formula milk (also called a baby formula). The normal milk we take as adults should never be given to babies until they are a year old. This is due to the following reasons:
- Cow’s milk contains a high amount of protein and minerals which are difficult for a baby’s system to digest. It can also overwork their maturing kidneys and can lead to problems such as indigestion, severe illness, fever and diarrhea.
- Cow’s milk does not contain the adequate amount of nutrients needed for a baby’s growth. This includes vitamin c and iron.
- The protein in cow’s milk can cause some irritation in the stomach lining of a baby’s digestive system, thus leading to blood in the stool.
- Cow’s milk does not have the healthiest types of fat for growing babies.
Formula milk is specially formulated for babies. Many baby formula brands have different products that range from childbirth to twelve months. No other type of milk should be given to your baby at this time.
Formula milk is made from cow’s milk but has been specially treated to make it digestible for babies’ systems. Baby formula milk also contains the adequate nutrients needed for babies to develop and grow well. This makes baby formula almost like breast milk.
Below are the best baby formulas in Nigeria.
S-26 GOLD is a premium infant formula that has been carefully formulated to provide complete nutrition for babies from birth.
Gold Newborn Infant Starter Formula
S-26 Gold Stage 1 Infant Starter is specially created for babies from newborn to 6 months old. It contains the essential nutrients (vitamins and minerals) needed for their developing bodies to grow big and strong. This formula does not contain any breast milk.
SMA Advanced First Infant Milk
This is an easy-to-digest, nutritionally complete baby formula that can serve as a breast milk substitute. The SMA Advanced First Infant Milk is enriched with Omega 3 & nutrients required for optimal nervous system development in a newborn. This baby formula can be used for combination feeding, that is when breastfeeding and using the baby formula at the same time.
Aptamil First Infant Milk
This is nutritionally complete baby formula, suitable for a newborn up to 12 months whether for combination or bottle-feeding. Aptamil is a trusted baby formula among parents. The formula is reported to have gone through extensive quality and safety checks, including clinical trials, product testing and product experience tests. Many babies take to this formula well.
Cow & Gate first infant milk
This is a baby formula designed for newborns and onwards. It is nutritionally complete milk that can serve as an appropriate substitute for breast milk. The powdered baby and toddler milk by Cow & Gate pass through a fine sieve to make sure the powder is evenly sized and perfectly clear. The packaging is also safe as oxygen is flushed out because it allows mould to grow. It is also secured with a heat-sealed lid.
Cow & Gate First infant milk come in various packages, which are:
- Cow & Gate First Infant Milk Big Pack
- Cow & Gate First Infant Milk Sachet
- Cow & Gate First Infant Milk Ready to use a bottle
- Cow & Gate First Infant Milk Easy Pack
Enfamil for new borns
Enfamil baby formula is one of the most recommended formula brands by pediatricians. The brand provides an extensive family of baby formulas for different ages and needs of a child. It is a trusted brand for brain-building nutrition and immune support.
Enfamil NeuroPro was formulated to closely resemble breast milk. It also contains brain-building nutrients like DHA. It is available as a powder or ready-to-feed formula. The brand claims this is the only baby formula with a brain-building Milk fat globule membrane, an ingredient clinically shown to improve a baby’s development.
Enfamil has the following baby formulas you can choose from:
- Enfamil Neuropro Infant Formular
- Enfamil Neuropro Gentleease Infant formular- For children experiencing fussiness, gas and crying
- Enfamil Neuropro Sensitive Infant Formula- For sensitive babies
Similac formulas is a milk-based formula with iron that checks off all of the nutritional boxes required for infants. Similac formulas have no artificial growth hormones in them and are enriched with DHA, Lutein and Vitamin E. It is a gentle formula that provides immune support for little ones. The brand offers many options such as specialized products for babies needing specialized nutrition, products for babies with sensitive stomachs or parents who want simply organic foods for their children.
- Similac Pro Advance
- Similac pro- Total comfort
- Similac Pro-Sensitive: These are products for sensitive stomachs
- There is also Similac Neosure Formula for premature babies.
Nestle NAN 1 Infant formula
NAN 1 is one of the most popular baby formulas in Nigeria. It a starter infant formula that is easy to digest. It helps to support an infant’s digestive and immune systems. It is available in innovative packaging for hygiene purposes.
The NAN Optipro is an infant formula designed for children birth to 6 months in the case where they are not breastfed. NAN OPTIPRO is an optimized protein blend that offers the right amount and quality of proteins needed for a baby’s growth. It also contains the required fatty acids found in breast milk that contribute to a child’s brain development.
Gerber Good Start GentlePro Powder Infant Formula
Gerber Good Start is modeled after the complete nutrition and gentleness of breast milk. It is ideal for babies up to 12 months. Gerber is a trusted brand in the baby food industry using the best quality ingredients to ensure safety and hygiene for your baby. The brand boasts this is their closest formula to breast milk.
Gerber Good start contains small proteins that are easy for a baby’s tummy to digest. It contains all the nutrients needed to support a child’s brain and eye development. It is a blend of DHA, prebiotics & probiotics, all components found in breast milk.