Monday, 3 August 2009

Bottle-feeding moms may overfeed kids...

OK... I may not have any experience in bottle-feeding babies since I'm still breastfeeding my son exclusively, but I think it's important to blog this down so that other bottle-feeding moms who may come across my blog will be able to read this and take a note. I also highlighted some of the main points to take note of in italic red.

Bottle-feeding moms lack info, may overfeed kids

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Many moms who bottle-feed lack important information on how to feed their infants safely, which could lead to overfeeding and heavy kids, new research from the UK shows

Formula-fed kids are more likely to be too heavy, Dr. Rajalakshmi Lakshman of the University of Cambridge, a researcher on the study, told Reuters Health, so she and her colleagues set out to investigate why.

They reviewed 23 studies involving 13,263 people. What they found surprised them, the researcher said. Many mothers who used formula felt "guilt, anger, worry, uncertainty and a sense of failure," she and her colleagues note in the Archives of Diseases in Childhood.

Moms also said they got little information on proper formula feeding, and many made mistakes in formula preparation. For example, many put powder in the bottle first, rather than water; this could overconcentrate formula by 10 to 15 percent, Lakshman said, meaning more calories than intended.

Also, she said, some parents reported packing scoops tightly when measuring formula, rather than loosely as recommended. And while water used to make formula should be boiled and used within 30 minutes, one US study found a third of moms were using warm tap water.

"All those things are important," the researcher said. Due to the heavy focus on breastfeeding, many health care providers don't bother giving new parents information on formula feeding, she added; one of the studies she and her colleagues looked at found just 21 percent of mothers were instructed on bottle-feeding by the time their babies were two months old.

Most babies-even breast-fed kids-will get some bottles before they move on to solid food, Lakshman said. "If a mother makes the decision to bottle feed then she should be given the information to do it correctly."

She and her colleagues also found that parents frequently switched formula brands because their infants were spitting up, and they feared intolerance of the formula. But because pretty much all formulas are based on cow's milk-aside from soy-based products-the regurgitation may have been due to overfeeding rather than intolerance, Lakshman said.

Overfeeding is indeed more of a risk with bottle-feeding, the researcher said, because parents have more control than babies do in how much milk the infant gets, which isn't the case with breastfeeding. Parents can avoid overfeeding by paying attention to an infant's cues, she advised, not giving the child more than the recommended amount of formula, and not assuming that every time the baby cries he needs a bottle.

SOURCE: Archives of Disease in Childhood, online July 14, 2009.


Piplove said...

Hi! I just came across your blog because I was googling why so many moms overfeed their babies. I actually formula feed and I don't understand how people overfeed their babies at all. My little guy is so perfectly healthy in all areas and I formula feed. There are a lot of idiots out in the world producing babies unfortunately, but I truly despise when breast feeding moms make themselves out to look like they have perfect babies just because they breastfeed. I formula feed because I take medication due to a heart problem, and I don't want my little baby to be receiving unnecessary medications in his body. To be perfectly honest, every breastfeeding mom I have ever known has had fat babies because they whip out their breast for every little cry because it soothes babies to suck on a breast. I think it is wonderful to breastfeed, and I wish I could do that for my son, but I also know he is healthy and happy. Sure you posted facts on here, but they are simply facts and not all of us moms out here in the world are that dumb to not read the instructions on how to properly make a bottle of formula.

I'm a full-time mummy said...

Hello Piplove!
Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. I have no problems or anything against formula feeding moms, just to make it clear first :)

Actually, formula or breastfeeding, as long s it is done correctly, and baby is thriving and growing healthily, there's nothing much to worry or doubt about.

The thing I'm more concerned is with formula feeding, there are mothers or caregivers who did not feed accordingly. I have a colleague who's 4 month old niece has been admitted to hospital due to overfeeding.

I'm not sure how much formula a 4 month old should be getting but in my friend's case, her niece is being fed (by caregiver) over the amount required and is getting very overweight that she is having difficulties in breathing. She is currently being put on a diet to reduce back her weight.

Of course, I agree with you, the articles posted are simply facts and does not cover each and every situation faced by mothers.

Just hope that this article will bring awareness that we have to monitor what goes in and out of our child and to be aware of every symptoms or problems detected to prevent any possible risks.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts on this. Truly appreciate it! Happy parenting! :)


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