Breastfeeding is best. It’s true, but not always possible. With the birth of my fourth child coming closer I was excited at the thought of breastfeeding again. Some women don’t take to it, but I loved it. I think it soothed and relaxed me as much as it did my baby. But, I also worried about how long I would be able to do it. With my other children my body simply gave out somewhere between 4-6 months and then refused to produce more milk. No matter what I did. And I tried everything! And so we always resorted to store bought formula, something that made us feel uneasy.
Prior to Hailey (our fourth child) being born, my husband and I had begun a journey into the world of Traditional eating vs. modern eating. We equate it to eating the green pill (or was it the red one) in The Matrix and going down a “rabbit” hole, knowing we can never go back. It’s a good thing, don’t worry .
Along our journey we stumbled on a book called Nourishing Traditions. It’s as much a recipe book as it is an amazing educational tool, teaching us all the traditional techniques that have been lost over the past century. In the book there were a few different recipes for infant formula. At first glance it was extremely intimidating. There were ingredients in there that I had never heard of: bifodabacterium infantis, acerola powder, yeast flakes, and more. And a few of the ingredients had to be made ahead of time, such as homemade liquid whey. It all seemed so time consuming and…. expensive? But with every bottle of store bought formula that Hailey consumed, the more it weighed on my husband and I to commit to making the Milk Based Formula (there is a meat based formula and fortified commercial formula to choose from as well). The formula is based on studies done by Dr. Weston A. Price and is designed to be as close to the various components of human milk as possible. I encourage you to look into the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF). It has proven to be an amazing educational source for how we want to eat (www.westonaprice.org).
The main ingredient of the milk based formula is, well, milk of course. Raw milk, not pasteurized or homogenized milk. If you’re new to the thought of drinking raw milk here are a few resources for you: http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/
IF you venture into making your own formula like I did, here are a few pointers:
First, get into the routine of making whey a few days before you’ll need it. Whey is easy to make. If you make you’re own yogurt from raw milk, you’ll end up with whey as a bi-product when you strain your yogurt. Voilla! And yogurt is very beneficial to your baby as well (once they are old enough to eat it of course). IF you don’t make you own yogurt, simply take your raw milk, pour some into a quart size mason jar, put the lid on and let it sit on your counter for 2-4 days. The milk solids will separate away from the whey, and when it is really good and chunky, dump it into some cheese cloth and let it strain until the whey stops dripping. It can be saved in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. But you’ll use it up before then.
Second, the ingredient ‘high vitamin butter oil’ is optional. We did purchase it with the intent to add it to Hailey’s formula as it was highly recommended for good health. BUT, it made the formula so chunky that it didn’t go through the nipple. I do recommend putting it in your child’s food once they start eating solids though.
Third, any other advice I can give you would be found in these amazing videos: http://www.youtube.com/
On a side note: Our Hailey was born with a few birth defects. No reason as to why, but her condition is prone to poor health and poor digestion. Her doctors are continually amazed at how healthy she is. We are attributing her good health to how we feed her and to God’s grace in her life.
Here is the Recipe I use:
- 2 Cups whole raw milk, from pasture-fed cows
- 1/4 cup homemade liquid whey
- 4 Tbs lactose
- 1/4 tsp bifodobacterium infantis
- 2 Tbs raw cream, from pasture-fed cows
- 1/2 tsp high vitamin cod liver oil
- 1 tsp unrefined sunflower oil
- 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp coconut oil
- 2 tsp Frontier brand nutritional yeast flakes
- 2 tsp gelatin
- 1 7/8 Cups filtered water
- 1/4 tsp acerola powder
Happy WAPF formula making !