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baby food

Baby

Vegan Baby or Nah?

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As Benjamin is about to turn a year old (next week Saturday, June 2 to be exact), I am constantly thinking about all of the decisions my husband and I have to make.  Ever since he was born, it seems like there is always something that threatens to really stress me out. First, it was what formula to give him as a supplement to breastfeeding, then it was to sleep train or not, what to do about daycare and me returning work (by far the MOST stressful of them all!).

Now that he is eating more food and drinking less milk, I am faced with the question, Do we raise him vegan/ vegetarian?

I know firsthand the benefits that living a plant-based lifestyle has given me (conceiving naturally despite having PCOS) so, I felt like I would be doing my child a disservice by feeding him foods that, in my opinion, would not give him the best health. We’re raising a future leader with a great future and his health needs to be the last thing to get in his way!

After talking to my husband (who is a meat-eater) and doing some research, we decided to allow him to eat meat when the time comes but, only certain types of meat.  This means antibiotic-free, free-range meats only and even then he will probably only eat meat sparingly. I knew for a fact that I did not want him drinking cow’s mil so, we decided to transition him to Ripple milk (made from pea protein) after getting off of the Earth’s Best Organic formula.  Can I add that Ripple tastes so good I’ve been drinking it myself instead of my usual almond milk.

I asked other plant-based moms for suggestions and scoured the internet for any credible information that would help. My concern was him getting enough protein with the transition to dairy-free milk and no meat/little meat but, so far, so good! The Ripple milk is 8 grams of protein per serving and I feed him lots of the same non-meat protein-packed foods that I eat.   He has been eating chickpeas, tofu, and avocado very well, which I am glad about.

I’m going to see what his pediatrician says at his 12-month check-up but, my mind is pretty made up.  We won’t restrict him from eating meat if he chooses to do so but, his diet will be primarily plant-based.

Are you raising vegan, vegetarian or plant-based kiddos?  If so, what obstacles did you come across?


Baby, Eats

Choosing an Organic Baby Formula

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Along with all of the unbelievably joyful moments that being a new parent brings, also comes the worrisome, guilt-filled ones.  As someone who knows firsthand the benefits that eating the right foods can bring, I get consumed with what I am feeding Benjamin. With all that’s out here, I know I should be but it can be seriously overwhelming.

A recent dilemma I had was choosing a baby formula. It really should not bring this much anxiety to pick one, should it?

I have been giving Benjamin formula since birth, at the suggestion of the nurses at the hospital, and also breastfeeding.  He had digestive issues along with some constipation that was painful to even watch. We tried lots of different ones and finally settled on a Soy formula by Gerber Good Start.  After a few months though, I did not feel comfortable keeping him on the soy.

Then the hunt for a regular formula began.

Although very exhausting, breastfeeding was going pretty well so, I began to pump more hoping that I could have enough milk for him during the day while I’m at work.  Between working, nursing, and pumping I was getting really burned out, and I just wasn’t making enough milk.

I did some online research and reached out to family and friends who worked in the pediatric nursing field for some help.  Can I say I’m really surprised that there are no formulas without soy or dairy– ZERO. ZILCH. NADA.

Based on conversations I had with others and everything I read, I decided to go with Plum Organics and Earth’s Best Organic formulas.  They were both listed in the top three formulas online and recommended by almost everyone I spoke with.  What stood out to me was:

  • no corn syrup solids added
  • non-GMO ingredients
  • no added sweetners
  • organic lactose

I used Plum Organics organic formula for the past few weeks and I have no complaints! Benjamin drank it without frowning or spitting up (an issue he had when on soy sometimes).  The price point though ($42 for 32 oz), was hitting our pockets pretty hard especially since we were buying it every week.  I can definitely vouch for the great reviews though.

This week, I picked up Earth’s Best Organic instead.  It’s a little less expensive (about $41 for 35 oz) and has the same ingredients. We’re just a few days in but so far, so good.

I never expected this to give me so much angst but, I’m glad there are great options out there for moms like me who are very particular about what their babies put in their bodies.

I also make all of Benjamin’s pureed foods at home but, I have supplemented a few times with the Plum Organics  and Earth’s Best baby foods.  They are the only two brands of baby foods I trust to give my baby outside of what I make at home.

Which brands of organic baby formula and foods are your favorites?