Anyone can develop an allergy to milk, but it is most common in infants, affecting 2 percent to 3 percent, according to the KidsHealth website. As a parent, you may worry about what you're going to feed your baby if she has an allergy to milk. Luckily, infant formulas such as Nutramigen offer the same nutrition as other formulas without the milk protein.
Who Needs It
Nutramigen is a hypoallergenic formula used by infants who are not only allergic to milk but also soy. The manufacturer of Nutramigen suggests that it can help resolve colic symptoms in those with a milk protein allergy. It is important to note that while infants with a milk protein allergy exhibit colicky symptoms, colic and milk protein allergy are two different things. A colicky baby is a healthy baby who cries for more than three hours more than three days a week. In addition to the colicky symptoms, an infant with a milk protein allergy may also experience loose stools -- sometimes tinged with blood -- vomiting, gagging, refusal to eat or a skin rash.
What's In It
As a hypoallergenic infant formula, Nutramigen contains hydrolyzed casein proteins, which are very small proteins -- amino acids and peptides -- that are easy for your infant to digest. Some of the fat content in Nutramigen -- 5 percent -- is in the form of medium-chain triglycerides, which are better absorbed than long-chained triglycerides and are helpful for infants with malabsorption. Nutramigen is also lactose-free, with its carb content coming from corn syrup solids.
How It Compares
Although the source of nutrients differs between standard infant formulas and Nutramigen, nutritionally they are very similar. Like other formulas, Nutramigen, when prepared as directed, contains 20 calories per ounce. It also contains 2.8 grams of protein, 5.3 grams of fat and 10.3 grams of carbs in a 5-ounce serving, as compared to the same serving of standard infant formula, which contains 2.2 grams of protein, 5.1 grams of fat and 11.2 grams of carbs. The Nutramigen also provides all of the essential vitamins and minerals infants need for normal growth and development.
Like other standard infant formulas, Nutramigen is also fortified with docosahexaenoic acid, or DHA, and arachidonic acid, or ARA. These essential fatty acids are nutrients naturally found in breast milk that are necessary for both eye and brain development in your infant. The addition of these nutrients to Nutramigen helps ensure that your baby gets everything he needs to not only support normal eye and brain health but also to ensure normal cognitive development.
- KidsHealth: About Milk Allergy
- Enfamil: Nutramigen
- University of Virginia: Pediatric Nutition Support Handbook
- KidsHealth: Your Colicky Baby
- The Hasbro Children's Hospital: Pediatric Surgery Handbook
- U.S. Department of Agriculture: National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Infant Formula, Nestle, Good Start Supreme, With Iron, Ready-to-Feed
- Today's Dietitian: The Role of DHA and ARA in Infant Nutrition and Neurodevelopmental Outcomes