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Infant Formula Without Soy

Infant Formula Without Soy

Infant Formula Without Soy

Soy is a source of nutrition that comes from plants. But what is soy is not an option for your baby?

There are a number of reasons why infant formula makers use soy in their products. However, there are many parents who do not want to put it in their child's diet so early in life. While some cow's milk-based infant formula contains some soy in the ingredients, there are formulas that are soy-based rather than cow's milk-based.

The Benefits of Soy-Based Infant Formula

When it comes to soy infant formula, there has been an increase of consumers. About 25% of babies in the United States have soy-based infant formula. There are also plenty of brands that have soy included in their cow's milk-based formula.

Vegetarian Lifestyles

When parents are vegetarians, they provide for their baby in the same lifestyle. This means avoiding cow's milk and breastfeeding. If breastfeeding is not an option, they want a formula that matches their views. Soy infant formula may meets that need.

Milk Allergies

Infants who have a milk allergy may be able to transition into soy-based infant formula. If the protein that is in milk is caused digestive issues, soy may be a healthy substitute.

What is the Problem with Soy-Based Infant Formula?

Estrogenic Effects

Research on animals has found that the concentration of soy in formula has higher levels of phytoestrogens that occur naturally in soy. This is more phytoestrogens than found in breast milk from mothers who consume soy. The effects of the phytoestrogens can lead to developmental delays, especially in boys around the time of puberty. For girls, the exposure of phytoestrogens can affect their reproductive health as well.

Trypsin Inhibitors

One of the proteins found in soybeans is trypsin inhibitors. One of the issues of this “antinutrient” in soy-based formula is that it inhibits the digestion and absorption of nutrients that are important to growth and development, especially in the baby's brain.

Phytic Acid

Just like the trypsin inhibitors, phytic acid blocks the absorption of key nutrients. This acid comes from the outer portion of seeds and is most prevalent in soybeans. Some of the minerals it has been found to block are calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. Not only does it affect brain and nervous system development, it can also irritate the digestive tract.