Hypoallergenic formulas for newborns and infants can help reduce the risk of food allergies which are quite common during the first year of life. Statistics show that at this age its prevalence reaches 6–10%. The development of food allergy is based on complex mechanisms of the immune system. In other words, this is a strong immune response to allergenic substances entering the organism. It is known that in the future it can cause a variety of allergic diseases – atopic dermatitis, lesions of the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory system.
The immaturity of the digestive system plays an important role in the development of allergies, which is observed in absolutely all babies. In the first year, the gastrointestinal tract does not fully fulfill its protective functions. Therefore, allergens easily enter the blood. That is why the best food for a baby under one year old is breast milk. It contains substances that help strengthen the child’s immunity and protect against allergies.
When to use a hypoallergenic formula
Those kids having family allergy anamnesis are exposed to high risk. That is why it is quite important to prevent allergies in time. The main allergen in children is usually milk protein in most cases. Hence milk protein in hypoallergenic formulas is usually hydrolyzed (split) form which helps reduce the allergenic potential.
The degree of hydrolysis is different. Formulas with fully hydrolyzed protein are made for therapeutic nutrition (if allergies are already present). Partially hydrolyzed ones are prescribed to healthy kids as a preventive measure. They contain everything needed for proper nutrition for babies up to one year old. At the same time, such formulas have a more pleasant taste than the medicinal ones, and children take them more willingly.
Non-allergenic infant milk is prescribed only by a pediatrician, but, of course, you should know what is included in the product. The presence of some components is highly desirable, while others are best avoided. Ingredients that are important to be in the composition of a hypoallergenic formula:
Let’s see why they are so important.
Probiotics serve as live bacteria that have a beneficial effect on the child’s organism, forming a full-fledged barrier of the intestinal mucosa. They’re needed for improving the balance of the intestinal microflora thus preventing pathogens from adhering to the mucous membrane. Probiotics avoid the development of diarrhea and candidiasis of the gastrointestinal tract. For children prone to allergies, there are specially designed formulas with probiotics like HiPP HA. It is a formula containing probiotic cultures of lactic acid bacteria L. fermentum, isolated from breast milk. It is proven that the combination of hydrolyzed protein in a combination with probiotics and prebiotics reduces the risk of allergies, helps to strengthen natural immunity, and promotes healthy intestinal microflora.
Breast milk contains substances that help the formation of good microflora in the baby’s intestines. If a baby is bottle-fed, the balance of microflora is disturbed. The use of hypoallergenic infant formula is the solution to this problem because it is enriched with prebiotics. These are substances that help the growth of beneficial flora – bifidobacteria and lactobacilli. Formulas with prebiotics improve digestion, decrease anxiety associated with colic. Furthermore, the possibility of allergies becomes less. It could be the right time to try HiPP hypoallergenic formulas if you notice allergy signs like digestion problems or skin reactions. This non-allergenic line is divided into stages e.g. HiPP HA Stage 2 is good for infants from six months onward.
Human milk oligosaccharide
Scientists managed to prove that breast milk oligosaccharides are necessary for the formation of the baby’s immunity, ensuring comfortable digestion, and preventing allergies. They serve as a source of nutrition for the healthy intestinal flora and promote its growth thus ensuring comfortable digestion. Moreover, breast milk oligosaccharides have a protective function :
- preventing harmful bacteria and viruses from entering the intestine
- they enter into the bloodstream and help the cells of the immune system to reduce inflammation, thus strengthening the overall immunity of a baby.
Therefore, when looking for a suitable formula for your little one, you should pay attention to the presence of these components in the composition of the formula. So a formula with probiotics, prebiotics, and breast milk oligosaccharides can be a good choice for a baby. At the same time, a consultation with a pediatrician is required, because only a doctor can advise which hypoallergenic food to choose for a newborn.