Tag Archive for Milk

Types of drinks

Oscar Drinking

Water

  • This is the best drink alternative to milk. 
  • Before 6 months boil tap water (from the mains tap in the kitchen) and allow it to cool before serving. If you are abroad and unsure of the water quality, do boil the water before giving it to your little one.
  • Bottled water is not a better alternative to tap water as it is not usually sterile. It may also have high levels of minerals such as sodium. 

Milk

  • Cow’s Milk – Before 1 year, formula and breastmilk are the best drink options as cow’s milk does not have enough iron. You can use full fat cow’s milk in cooking. After 1 year, you can introduce whole cow’s milk as a main drink.
  • Follow-on milk – These milks are marketed at babies over 6 months as these have higher amounts of protein and some minerals. There is no need to change to follow on milk as your baby should be getting these additional nutrients from solid food.
  • Pasteurised sheep’s and goat’s milk are also not advised before 1 year
  • Rice milk should not be offered at all until 5 years old to reduce exposure to inorganic arsenic.

Juice

  • There is no need to offer fruit juice at all if your baby is eating fruit. The longer you can avoid offering sweetened drinks the better. 
  • If you do offer fruit juice, please ensure it is well diluted with water – 1 part juice to 10 parts water.

Other drinks

  • Squashes, flavoured milk, fizzy drinks and juice drinks should be avoided due to their sugar content. 
  • Drinks with sweeteners should also not be offered (check any labels that say ‘no added sugar’!). 
  • Tea and coffee are not suitable as they reduce iron absorption.

TOP TIP: Water or milk are the best drinks to offer at meal times

More learnings after Oscar’s operation

Oscar close up

Oscar’s recovery has been remarkable but he has struggled to drink from a bottle during this time. The specialist nurse had warned me that it might be two weeks for feeding to get back to normal but it has still made me feel stressed that he might not be getting enough hydration. Below are some ways I dealt with the situation

  • Add formula/breastmilk to meals wherever you can – I added it to everything I could
  • Thicken some breastmilk/formula and offer it on a spoon – I mixed in banana porridge and offered in addition to all meals
  • Offer yoghurts as desserts or as snacks to ensure your baby still has some dairy
  • Little and often – Offer yoghurts or thickened milk between meals
  • Watch out for wet nappies – these are a sign of hydration status. Your little one should have roughly 6 wet nappies a day
  • Contact your specialist nurse if you have any concerns – Even as a dietitian I wanted to check I was during the right thing. Don’t feel you cant’t call, that is what they are there for.
  • Keep trying with the bottle but don’t force it
Last night Oscar finally accepted his bottle. I felt quite tearful I was so relieved. And he even made some sucking noises (something he could never do before the operation)! It’s funny that accepting the bottle has been such a milestone for us but I guess it accompanies a sense of things returning to normal. We are so grateful to modern medicine and that we have been able to have this operation in the first place.

TOP TIP: Keep an eye on the number of wet nappies if you are worried about your little one’s milk intake