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Switching EBF 6-month-old to cow's milk

(13 Posts)
Agouti Wed 23-Jul-08 13:28:24

The WTO/Department of Health advises against giving cow's milk exclusively as a drink until 1 year old but it doesn't make sense to me.

My 6-month-old is exclusively BF. He will take cow's milk from a bottle or beaker but not formula (kicks and screams at the taste. Can't blame him). I can continue BF-ing until he's 1 but wouldn't mind stopping and reclaiming my body. While cow's milk is low in iron and vitamins, so is breastmilk the 'experts' say.

So what difference does it make if I switch from BF to cow's milk and make sure he's getting enough iron and vitamins in his solid food of which he's now eating three meals a day? After all, formula is just milk powder with added iron and vitamins which can't be as good as getting them from the real thing.

pinkspottywellies Wed 23-Jul-08 19:57:33

I don't know the answers to all of your questions but I have picked up vaious things on MN and kellymom about this so...

Formula is much higher in iron than breastmilk BUT that's because it isn't absorbed by the body in the way that the iron in bm is (off the top of my head it's something like 50% of the iron in bm is absorbed but only 4% of the iron in formula). Therefore the amount in cows milk will not be enough for him. Don't know about any specific vitamins but I imagine it's a similar situation.

There is also something about salt/sodium levels in cows milk being too high.

Kellymom is good for things like this - might be worth a search.

designerbaby Wed 23-Jul-08 20:08:04

I assume you've tried various formulas...? I found Aptamil much less bleurgh that ssome others and tastes much more like BM IMHO...

Probably you've done this, but just thought it was worth a mention...


p.s. In my experience (and compulsion to taste everything before giving it to DD) I found SMA particularly bleurgh and the ready made ones even more bleurgh bleurgh bleurgh...

Seona1973 Wed 23-Jul-08 20:08:27

Iron supplementation

cows milk

Divvy Wed 23-Jul-08 20:15:29

20 years ago we gave cows milk from 6 months old! hmm

LackaDAISYcal Wed 23-Jul-08 20:15:46

can you mix cows milk and formula for a while (whilst still Bfing him); slowly increasing the proportion of formula to cows milk? this way he might get used to the taste gradually?

I would be wary of giving a 6mo old cows milk as their main drink though.

LackaDAISYcal Wed 23-Jul-08 20:18:25

divvy, just because it was deemed OK 20 years ago, doesn't mean it is the right thing to do now.

Seona1973 Wed 23-Jul-08 22:24:19

they probably had more cases of iron deficiency anaemia too back then - not so desirable now!!

barbamama Wed 23-Jul-08 22:28:53

I think kellymom recomends cows milk ok as long as not main drink. my 10m old has been on cows milk since about 8m but still has 4 bfs a day. Could you go 50/50 for a while?

Agouti Fri 25-Jul-08 12:55:10

Thanks to everyone for the responses so far. The bit about sodium in cow's milk is interesting and the links to Kellymom v. useful. Seems like it's BF till 1 year unless I can persuade the poppet to take another formula (Hipp Organic is the only one I've tried).

chloemegjess Sat 26-Jul-08 15:28:27

Try aptimil. I wouldn't personally give a 6month old cows milk. I dont think they can digest it properly? I might be wrong there though

ready2pop Tue 29-Jul-08 13:28:48

Apparently, I did this when I was a baby and so my mum gave me cow's milk from 3 months Her dr said this was ok but she had to boil it first and add vitamin drops to it.

Obviously this was yonks ago but at least shows that cow's milk alone definitely isn't enough.

Fingerbobs Tue 29-Jul-08 21:31:01

Try different formulas; my ds spat the first out one (aptamil) but drank the second like mother's milk (SMA gold). If at first you don't succeed...

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