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As a parent, it is your personal choice to feed your baby with formula. It could be as a result of different reasons; health reasons, getting a new job or you might be making a transition from breast milk to formula. Baby formula is produced as an alternative to breast milk for babies under 12 months. It is produced to provide your little one with the required nutrients needed for healthy development. A baby formula mimics the nutrients found in breast milk to ensure your baby does not lack the essential nutrient needed.
Different formula brands are produced by different manufacturers and have a distinct taste based on the number of vitamins, minerals and sweeteners used in the production. Some formula brand does not have a great taste that would be appealing to a baby and this can lead to your little one making a fuss during feeding time and eventually refusing to swallow the formula. That is why a question like; can you put sugar in a baby formula would be asked by several parents.
Can you put sugar in baby formula?
Infant formula is produced with different carbohydrates which end up as sugar. Although, these carbohydrates are easy to digest due to the fragile digestive system of your little one. Lactose, sucrose, corn syrup, maltodextrin, rice starch are carbohydrates that are used in the production of a baby formula but have content of sweetness to enable your baby to accept the formula right away without a fuss. Hence, it is recommended that sugar should not be added to your baby formula. Adding sugar to your baby’s formula affects your baby’s nutrition, results in infant obesity, triggers the developing sense of your baby and makes it hyperactive, and result in other health complications. Sugar should only be introduced to a baby after 12 months of age since the body can now accept additional sugar content without resulting in health complications.
There are other ways to make your baby’s formula sweeter without adding sugar since the taste of some formula brands is not so great. Below are ways to make baby formula sweeter.
5 ways to make baby formula sweeter
1. Pure vanilla extract
Adding pure vanilla extract such as the Simply Organic Vanilla Extract can add a bit of flavor to the formula and make your baby take it without a fuss. It is important that you get pure vanilla extract and not vanilla flavoring to avoid giving your baby added sugar and artificial ingredients which is not good for proper development. Be conscious to check the manufacturers labeling to ensure the vanilla extract is made from only natural vanilla beans, no added preservatives, coloring, alcohol, and sugar. Ensure you put just a few drops of vanilla extract to sweeten your baby’s formula because of the tender digestive system of your little one.
2. Fruit puree
Fruit puree can be added to give your baby’s formula a sweeter and more appealing taste. Preparing a fruit puree is usually simple, fun, and makes you creative. To make a fruit puree, take out the desired fruit you would like to use and blend till it is smooth. Some fruits require that you boil or steam them before blending. Adding fruit purees to baby formula does not only make it sweeter but gives your baby the additional nutrient found in the fruits used. Ensure you put just a little fruit puree to sweeten your baby’s formula so it does not result in constipation or stomach upset.
3. Breast milk
Breast milk is naturally sweet and can be easily digested by babies. Mothers who can still express their breast milk can add it to the formula to make it sweeter, although, some safety guidelines should be followed to keep your baby safe and healthy. Ensure you maintain the correct ratio of water to formula before adding breast milk so the nutritional value of the formula is not distorted. This is important because adding excess water to the formula can put a strain on your baby’s developing kidney and result in health complications. You can also contact your pediatrician before mixing breast milk and formula.
4. Date syrup
Date syrup is another great way to add flavor to your baby’s formula without adding extra sugar. It is healthy and gives your baby additional nutrients while enhancing the taste of the formula. You can buy date syrups in stores such as the D’vash Date Syrup from Amazon, but ensure there are no added preservatives and flavoring or you can make your date syrup at home. To make homemade date syrup, wash your dates and deseed them, chop them into smaller pieces, add them to a bowl of hot water and leave them overnight for it to get soft. When the dates are soft, take them out and mash them. Sieve out the smooth pulp and place it in a saucepan. Allow the pulp to boil until it begins to thicken. When it becomes dark, turn off the flame and allow it to cool down before pouring it into a glass jar. Ensure you add just a little amount of date syrup to your baby’s formula.
5. Apple sauce
Apple sauce is not only used to sweeten baby formula but it is rich in fiber and vitamin C which is essential for the healthy development of your little one. It is also ideal to sweeten your baby’s formula since it a natural and easy to mix with your baby’s formula. To make homemade apple sauce, wash, peel and dice apple to smaller pieces, boil the chopped apples till it is tender, puree, or mash the tender apple till it has a smooth texture. Cool apple sauce and store in BPA-free containers. Add apple sauce to the formula in little quantities till your baby is above 6 months.
Honey was not added to the ways you can sweeten a baby’s formula because it has been recommended that honey should not be given to a baby under 12 months of age to avoid infant botulism.
Babies might make a fuss while been fed formula because some formula does not have a great and appealing taste. Sugar mustn’t be added to your baby’s formula to sweeten it to avoid infant obesity, triggering your baby’s developing senses and other health complications. Above are ways to sweeten your baby’s formula without adding sugar. Ensure to discontinue any of the sweetening methods if you notice your little one is reacting to it.