Breast Milk vs Formula: Which Is Best For Strong Bones?

Breast Milk vs Formula: Which Is Best For Strong Bones?

The nutrition babies receive as infants can determine their overall health for life. Bone development is of utmost importance as babies grow at such a rapid rate. A major consideration for their nutrition intakes in which type of milk they are consuming- breast milk or formula? Let's take a closer look at which is best for strong bones. 

What The Experts Say

According to Mayo Clinic, "breastfeeding is the recommended way to feed a newborn. Depending on the circumstances, however, various factors might lead you to consider formula-feeding." 

It's recommended to feed your baby breast milk exclusively for the first six months since it has all the right nutrients to help your baby grow, build a strong immune system, and develop a healthy diet/lifestyle from the start. However, some doctors say that breast milk doesn't always have the ample amount of Vitamin D, which helps the baby absorb enough calcium and phosphorus (nutrients that are foundational to building strong bones). Therefore, it can be recommended that Vitamin D supplements should be used in addition to breastfeeding.

What If You Can't Breastfeed? 

Although breastfeeding is known to be the best way to feed a newborn, studies also show that about 1-5% of women can't produce enough milk to feed their baby. For whatever reason this may be, this would fall under one of the "various factors" Mayo Clinic mentions that might lead a mother to choose formula-feeding instead. 

Some mothers that can't breastfeed may feel stigmatized, but it's important to realize that formula-feeding will get the job done too... and that's nothing to feel bad about. Some formulas are even made to have more nutrients so women don't have to give their babies Vitamin D supplements additionally. 

The Truth

In reality, both forms of feeding will give the baby what he or she needs. Experts do tend to suggest breastfeeding as the preferred option if that's possible because of the many benefits it provides for the mother and child (heck, it's free too!), but formula-feeding is a great alternative as long as it is nutrient-packed. 

At Kerrville Imaging, we know the importance of maintaining healthy bones and this starts at a young age. We hope this article will help you decide which milk is best for your babies developments and bone health. If you have questions about bone health or about Open MRI's, contact us!