Soy milk formula is a non-dairy formula option, made from soybeans, which only contains soy protein. This type of formula has become an increasingly popular alternative to cow’s milk formula. Some parents might prefer it for ethical or environmental reasons, while others believe it may reduce colic, prevent allergies, or reduce their child’s risk of disease later in life. However, the consumption of soy-based formula might come with a few risks, not being a safe feeding option for all babies.
Why would you choose a Soy based Formula?
Soy based formulas are a popular choice among vegan families. Moreover, soy formulas are suitable for babies with lactose intolerance.
However, for babies with mild lactose intolerance, there are specialized cow milk formulas with hydrolyzed proteins, such as the hypoallergenic or comfort type. You can learn more about specialized formulas here.
Does Soy provide any health benefits?
While some parents believe that soy formula is a beneficial choice for their child's health, it's important to examine the available evidence and draw conclusions based on scientific research. Studies have suggested a potential link between soy-rich diets and a decreased risk of certain diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, in adults.
However, soy has been discovered to contain compounds known as phytoestrogens, which could affect a baby’s reproductive development, especially in babies who drink only soy-based formula. Moreover, soy milk was found to be more likely than cows' milk to harm a baby's teeth.
What you should remember:
Despite the fact that soy milk baby formula has experienced a surge in popularity as an alternative to cow’s milk formula, it might not be a safe option for all babies.
As a parent, it is your responsibility to seek out specialized help from your healthcare professional to decide which is the most suitable formula for your baby.