The reason why formula is recommended to the age of one year is that it is higher in iron than cow's milk. If you wish to give your DS lower levels of iron that is up to you. Health officials can recommend whatever but ultimately it is up to the parents.
I waited until 15mths.!!
I used cows milk in food from 6 months (so to make up baby rice and to add to weetabix, mashed banana etc) but still fed formula in bottles. I kept up with the formula for longer than one year with ds1 as he was quite a poor feeder/eater and I was trying to keep his iron up.
Ds2 was a human dustbin so I'm sure I put him on cows milk earlier - well, you do anyway with 2nd, 3rd whatever babies!!
Just think - we were all probably given cows milk at 4-6 months and we're all still alive to tell the tale.
Basically the Dept of Health don't recommend it as a drink before 12 months although it can be used in cooking - not enough iron apparently. However, some babies - especially if they've been breastfed - go straight onto cows milk. Mine started at 9 months, initially mixed with formula but then just plain old cows milk. And I'm a Health Visitor - not only that but he had baby rice at 13 weeks
Sorry Fimbles and PinkDiamond, as I typed it it didn't sound right but I wanted to say that it is up to the parents. Some MumsNetters, I find, are very bossy and self-opinionated and if a Mum wants to give cow's milk to drink, it's up to the individual mum. Didn't mean to offend. Promise.
what I find funny is that for the next 2 weeks I shouldn't give my DTs cows milk. On Feb 10th it is recommended that they have breastmilk/formula on Feb 11th I can just hand over the cow's milk. Maybe it's just me but things like that tickle me.
Sorry I did not reply to any of your posts last night but ds suddenly woke screaming & did not get back to sleep until 2am but thank you all so much for your advice. After all that I think I'll just wait a couple more months to be on the safe side.
DS1 was bf and didn't 'drink' cows milk until he was about 2 1/2yrs old (I stopped BF at 14 months and he point blank refused to drink any type of milk - so filled up on other iron and calcium rich foods).
DS2 was bottlefed and at 11 months I switched him straight over to cows milk.
ds is 8 months and breastfed but has cows milk on his cereal and in cooking. He doesn't have it as a drink though and probably wont for a while yet, if he needs a drink with his meals I just give him water.