Formula: Things to know

The article was consulted professionally by Master, Dr Huynh Bao Toan – Department of Pediatrics – Newborn – Share99 Nha Trang International Health Hub.

Infant formula is used when the mother cannot or does not have conditions for full breastfeeding. So what is formula milk, how to choose baby formula? The article below will answer questions about baby formula.

Breast milk is the best source of nutrition for babies in the first years of life. However, the milk glands in each mother are different, the amount of breast milk in the woman in the first months after birth does not always meet the needs of the baby. And when the mother cannot or does not have the conditions to breastfeed completely, baby formula is a safe alternative, ensuring adequate nutrition for the baby in the first years of life.

1. What is formula?

Formula milk (also known as Baby formula) or baby formula, is produced to make food for babies and babies under 12 months of age. Formula milk has the same composition as the chemical formula of breast milk, so it can be used to completely or partly replace breast milk.

Breast milk substitute milk is formula 1 powdered milk (which is the type for babies from 0-6 months) that is almost identical to the nutritional composition in breast milk to provide the nutrients necessary for the baby to develop. Formula 1 powdered milk is now offered in various forms such as:

  • Powdered milk: Usually mixed with water before drinking the baby;
  • Liquid milk: Usually mixed with an equivalent amount of water;
  • Instant milk: Usually more expensive than the above-said milks, can be immediately used by the child without having to go through the processing steps.

2. How to make infant formula

  • Step 1: Rinse the glass, spoon, bottle, nipples and boil thoroughly in boiling water for 10 minutes.
  • Step 2: Calculate the amount of formula your baby needs during a feeding.
  • Step 3: Take a sufficient amount of water according to the amount of milk calculated in step 2.
  • Step 4: Use a measuring spoon to take the amount of powdered milk as instructed on the milk carton, do not fill the spoon, but must cross the measuring spoon with a tool (knife or clean spoon handle).

Formula: Things to know

Mix baby formula with moderately hot water
  • Step 5: Mix baby formula with hot water about 40 degrees Celsius. If the water is too hot, it is necessary to cool to a temperature equivalent to body temperature (37 degrees Celsius) and it is not recommended to feed the baby immediately. It is recommended to feed the child slowly to avoid choking.

3. The need to use formula for babies

  • From birth to 1 month: 60 ml once, 8 – 10 times daily, total milk is about 480 ml/day;
  • From 1 month to 2 months: 90 ml / time, 7 – 10 times / day, total milk about 630 ml / day;
  • From 2 months to 4 months: 120 ml / time, 6 – 10 times / day, total milk about 720 ml / day;
  • From 4 months to 6 months: 150ml / time, 6 – 8 times / day, the total amount of milk is about 900 ml / day.

4. How to store baby formula

The maximum time to use baby formula is 2 hours. The remaining amount of milk should be removed, since including the baby's saliva, the milk can be contaminated and not convenient for storage.

Parents also do not allow children to use their excess milk again more than 2 hours in advance to avoid infection, especially Crono bacteria that can cause very dangerous diseases such as meningitis or septicaemia….

5. How to choose baby formula?

The variety of baby formula products on the market today makes it easy for parents to find a suitable formula for their children. However, it is important how to distinguish and choose the right product that the child needs. Parents can refer to how to choose a baby formula to help choose the right milk for the child. To avoid confusion and peace of mind with the product you have chosen for your child, parents should note:

  • Check if the brand or product packaging is real or not;
  • Carefully check the content of baby formula including protein, fat, DHA, ARA, vitamins … above the label to ensure that the baby not only develops well in height, weight, but also can develop the brain, strengthening the immature immune system of the child – the decisive factors in giving the child a quality source of nutrition in the first years of life;
  • Baby formula produced based on international standards will be a highly reliable product. Therefore, parents should also choose products that have been recognized by food safety and nutrition organizations for food safety, quality management, content indicators …;

Formula: Things to know

How to choose baby formula?
  • It is advisable to learn and consult from a nutritionist to have necessary information about the nutritional needs of the child as a basis for choosing baby formula. Especially mothers with premature babies, underweight or with gastrointestinal problems, desperately need a special nutritional formula, choosing the right product to help them catch up with growth momentum and develop well.

6. Note when using baby formula

Here are some issues parents should keep in mind when using baby formula:

  • How to phase: Milk should be mixed with hot water, it is not recommended to use a reheated microwave. Parents should also pay attention to overheated milk that can cause burns to the baby;
  • Shelf Life: Only use expired formula, if overdue should be immediately abandoned, because the milk is overdue, the nutritional content is impaired, can even cause disease to the child;
  • Storage: Parents need to read carefully information about how to store baby formula on the product packaging, especially before opening the product. Good storage of the product after opening will help maintain long-term milk quality as well as ensure safety when using. Note that frozen storage of formula milk is not necessary because it will reduce the quality of milk;
  • Cleaning milking tools: bottle, pacifier need to be cleaned before and after the feeding of the baby.
  • Homemade baby formula: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate or recommend that people make their own formula because it will not ensure both nutritional content and safety for babies;
  • Counterfeit formula: there are many fake baby formula products on the market, so parents should be cautious when buying and should consult with doctors and nutritionists to make the right knowledge and choices. One of the things to do to avoid buying fake milk is to read the labels carefully. Avoid buying expired milk, counterfeit labels of res famous brands, need to pay attention to shelf life and information about nutrients;
  • Milk color: always check the quality of milk, if you see a change in color or have a strange taste, you should quit.

Although breast milk is best for babies, when conditions do not allow the mother to breastfeed completely, it is possible to use baby formula to ensure adequate nutrition, especially in the first years of life. Formula milk has advantages such as a variety of types to help parents have many choices; the milking of the baby does not depend on the mother, thus creating favorable conditions for the mother to return to work soon.

Dr Huynh Bao Toan has 13 years of experience in pediatrics. Before being a pediatrician at Share99 Nha Trang International Health Hub, the former Head of Pediatrics – Newborn Department of Share99 Phu Quoc International Health Hub

For direct advice, please click hotline number or register online HERE. In addition, you can register for remote consultation HERE


  • How long is the formula finished?
  • Nutrition in nursing mothers
  • Questions every mother asks when starting breastfeeding

About: Minh Quynh

b1ffdb54307529964874ff53a5c5de33?s=90&d=identicon&r=gI am the author of I had been working in Vinmec International General Hospital for over 10 years. I dedicate my passion on every post in this site.


Leave a Comment