T Nation

Prime Time - SOY BABY

Here’s a question for the Prime Time guys, and anyone else with some helpful information.

A friend of mine recently gave birth to a baby boy. He’s about 3 months old, and was just diagnosed with severe asthma. The doctors say that he is also allergic to the baby formula they were feeding him, and have recommended that he be given a soy-milk substitute.

Now, we’ve all heard how bad soy milk is for the adult population, so giving it to 3 month old babies is freaking me out.

My friend and her husband are not very knowledgeable about nutrition, and haven’t thought twice about the doctor’s recommendation. The doctor, as usual, has not explained to them WHY soy-milk should be used or what exactly in the formula is causing the allergic reactions, but has told them that testing for allergies should not be done at such a young age.

I know quite a bit about nutrition, but infant nutrition is something I’m not willing to touch with a 10 foot pole.

What should the baby be fed instead? Is soy milk even bad for infants?

So hopefully I can rely on the T-Nation gods, and all the intelligent forum members to help me out. Or more importantly, help a 3 month old baby boy. WON’T SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN?!?!?!

Obviously I’m not a nutritionist, but the logic I have heard behind this is that cow’s milk increases mucus production in humans, and if the baby is an asthmatic, increased mucus production is bad and leads to more asthma attacks. I don’t know if soy-milk produces less mucus.

Why don’t they just breast feed the baby? Are there problems?

Why isn’t the mom breast-feeding? I guess it is soooo much easier to crack open a can of shit protein and garbage carbs (Similac) and pour that down baby’s gullet, where it upsets his fragile GI tract, and either pukes, and/or shits his diaper.

I used to stock groceries in the baby aisle, and I read the ingredients in formula, and it is overpriced garbage protein and junk carbs. Keep in mind that any type of dairy based liquid protein drink is pasteurized and condensed. This probably results in killing off the fractions of the protein. Now, you will not find miccelar casein, and other good proteins in formula. It is basicly WPC, which is high in lactose. Couple that with plenty of maltodextrin, and even a bodybuilder would bloat up from the gas produced.

Now imagine giving this stuff to a baby, who cannot process food as quickly as an adult with a matured intestinal tract. Instant upset baby. It is unfortunate that moms today just instantly grab the bottle of formula, and do not let the baby suckle.

There are many important nutrients in a mother’s milk which enhance immune function of the baby, not to mention essential fatty acids to help brain function. Soy based formulas are another evil. The phytoestrogens in soy cause testicular shrinkage in male babies, and God only knows what it does to female babies. Tell them to go to westonaprice.org, for more information on baby formulas, and since I am a guy , I have no insider information on breast-feeding, but one of my friends, a pediatrician, recommends it over formula, hands down. Try goggling breast feeding sites for more information. I hope this helps. -The Starkdog

You should read the article poison protein. Feeding soy milk to a baby boy will interfere with him having a normal development at puberty. What’s the matter with merely breast feeding the lad.

don’t let that kid drink soy formula!!! check out these links… it’s bad stuff!!

Breast is best but if there is no alternative…

I’ve done a little reseach on this in the past for a literature review. There are formulas out there based on hydrolysed milk proteins. It?s usually the casein proteins that illicit the reaction. Once you hydrolyse them the problem goes away - depending on the degree of hydrolysis of course.

There are infants out there who can?t take soy of cows milk formula and this was designed for them. Howeve they are more expensive than soy based products so they gets first mention.

http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=body_87prote

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459516

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=461709

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459861

Tell them to read any of these 4 articles, they’re all referenced I think.

I’m going through this right now as well. We are starting to talk about having a baby but my wife is very much against breast feeding… It’s like she thinks it is gross or something. Her sister also does not do it. I just don’t understand.

Does anyone know of any really good sites explaining the differences and why one is better than another?

I do know if we use formula it will NOT contain soy… Could I make formula out of Grow!?

I’m just going to chime in to give my support for the breast. It is unfortunate if the baby has an intolerance to thier mother’s milk, but there is no other viable reason to not breat feed a child other than a selfish reason.

There is enough information in this thread already mentioned about how bad formula is, but I will add just a few other items.

  1. The cost of formula is incredible. I’ve seen numbers of over $400/month.

  2. For the boys ~ Infant boys have higher testosterone levels, in their first two to four months, than they do when they are going through puberty! We all know how bad Soy is for boys, so this is a CRITICAL time for them to be getting the proper nutrients. My boy is 12 weeks old and is getting wood about four to six times a day (if not more). He has wood, almost every time we change his diaper. LOCK UP YOUR DAUGHTERS IN 12 YEARS! I may not be able to control him.

  3. I don’t have much to base this on, but I will say that it is very important to breast feed for LONGER than just the first six months. If possible, your child (and the mother) will benefit if you can keep the breast feeding up for at least a year. Recent studies linked diabetes with lack of duration of breast feeding. I am speaking in very general terms here, as I don’t have the time to get the research for you.

That is my $2 worth.

~ Jack

How about goat’s milk it’s very easy to digest compaired to cow? In reference to Grow! and kids I dated a woman with kids years back (boy6 girl 9) and they considered the chcolate protein the same as the other sugary powders. They continued on their normal growth patterns for kids their age but the weight seemed to be more muscle. I don’t know if it was because they were more active than before but they certainly felt better throughout the day. They each had a scoop with milk at every meal.

Wow, there are some great responses here! Thank you everyone.

We all seem to be in agreement with the “breast is best” method (nice one, Drewsky!). When I first found out she was using formula, I was kind of angry, as I thought the same as jackzepplin, that it was stupid and selfish. I asked why she wasn’t breast feeding and she said that with her last baby, she couldnt produce enough milk, and the baby was getting sick, so she switched to formula, and everything was fine again. Her last baby was a girl by the way, and I think she used milk based formula for that - no allergies.

Thank you sifu, projectx, and orbitalboner for the article suggestions. I had read most of them many times before, but they take on whole new meanings when you’re reading them thinking of a 3 month old baby that you dont really have control over. I tend to skip over the points that dont apply to me at the time. I will definately show them these articles.

After going through westonaprice.org (thanks starkdog) it seems that not producing enough milk is caused by horrible diets. It also seems that bad diets = bad breast milk. And I have to say, her diet sucks!

Now as we all know, its hard to convince other people to eat properly… just getting a regular joe to follow JB’s 7 habits is close to impossible! And I know that she will not change her eating habits enough to provide healthy milk for the baby.

So with that said, I guess the best solution is to feed the baby some type of homemade formula? Hydrolyzed milk protein seems to be a good alternative, along with added extras. westonaprice.org recommends cod liver oil, coconut oil, E.V. olive oil, and some other stuff. I’ve been looking around for other recipes, but if anyone has suggestions, feel free to share.

And todd s., i was thinking the exact same thing! formula out of Grow!?? hmmmmm… however it looks like casein tends to cause most of the allergic reactions to milk products.

I look forward to more replies! Thanks again to all who helped.

You might want to also check with a lactation consultant. The hospital or OB office may know of one in your area. There is even a thing known as a “milk bank” (human milk that is).

One word of warning re:goats milk. The alergenic properties are due to the protein in the milk (not lactose - different problem), goats milk cows milk have many common protein types and so can cause the same types of reactions.

For more info read this (espec the abstract) it is the position statement by the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology, they can print this out and present it to their doctor who will listen, this group is VERY well respected.

Someone asked about breastfeeding information - LaLeche League is THE group to checkout. www.lalecheleague.org

Once you’ve read about it, there’s just no way you could NOT at least try to breastfeed your baby. It’s just so much healthier all around. It’s hard and there’s a learning curve, but with support it’s actually easier than bottle-feeding in many ways.

It is almost impossible to not make enough milk for your baby - this reason is usually incorrect and the mother simply needs to nurse more often. It is a supply-and-demand system, put baby to breast more often and in a few days you will make more milk.

It’s sad that by the time parents realize a baby has digestive or other problems and could especially benefit from breastfeeding, it’s too late.

It’s harder at first when you’ve just been through the hellish experience of giving birth, but in a few weeks it gets so much easier, it’s best for baby and it’s free. T-Men, encourage and support your “babies mommas” to breastfeed!

(getting off my soapbox now…)

Since this was entitled “PRIME TIME” I feel the need to chime in. I really have to say that I’m not sold on the whole “soy is evil” campaign. Of course I’m also not saying that it’s all a lie, I just don’t think there’s enough evidence yet to throw it around as dogma.

Don’t call me Switzerland, I’m just waiting for more info.

As for the manganese warning… have we suddenly had a dramatic increase in neurological problems since these soy products have hit the market? The limited evidence is hardly conclusive, but then again, how far does one have to go before you say “okay, these people died so I guess this stuff really is bad for us”.

Too many questions…

[quote]Phileaux wrote:
How about goat’s milk it’s very easy to digest compaired to cow? In reference to Grow! and kids I dated a woman with kids years back (boy6 girl 9) and they considered the chcolate protein the same as the other sugary powders. They continued on their normal growth patterns for kids their age but the weight seemed to be more muscle. I don’t know if it was because they were more active than before but they certainly felt better throughout the day. They each had a scoop with milk at every meal.[/quote]

I thought you weren’t meant to feed kids under a certain age Grow! Isn’t there a warning on the label about this?

I would just like to note that though soy is often bashed, and (possibly) rightly so, we must remember that not all soy is evil.
For example, most REAL food (such as tofu and of the such) made of soy uses fermented soy, which is known for being MUCH healthier than the soy protein isolates and phytoestrogen isolates.
And it’s true that the whole estrogen thing is probably bad for t-men, but it works wonders for my mom who’s hit menopause.

Theere are a number of well-meaning comments here. Still, there’s way too much to consider regarding this issue than you’re going to get here. I suggest going to a local (university) bookstore and reading the relevant chapter from a “Nutrition 101” (Freshman-type, introductory) type textbook.

Trust me, this can be an invaluable, easiy to understand, mostly opinion-free, reasonably brief, middle-ground resource.

[quote]enterthedojo wrote:
What should the baby be fed instead? Is soy milk even bad for infants?
[/quote]

I know this is a few days old, but hopefully you’re still reading it.

She needs to relactate and breastfeed that baby!!!

Tell her to look at www.lalecheleague.org for info on relactation. If the child is allergic to the cow’s milk-based formula and they’re doubtful of using soy (can’t blame them there!), then she needs to BREASTFEED.

Feel free to PM me for help, if she chooses to do that.

Also, if the baby was getting sick, it was likely somehting SHE was eating that was passing through to the milk and making the baby sick. Few ppl are educated on breatsfeeding. It’s sad.