There are many challenges that come with being a new parent and choosing the right formula for your child is one of them. While it's a blessing that there are so many products available in the baby formula market today, it can make choosing a formula a little daunting.
Since you've probably spent some time researching the different types of formulas available, you've probably come across some pros and cons for each type, from cow's milk to hypoallergenic and more. There is a lot of information available that can be overwhelming, especially when the information is updated as we continue to develop to better understand the science of infant feeding.
One topic you've probably come across is the difference between cow and goat milk formula, which can be confusing. That's why we decided, based on the latest scientific knowledge, to create a detailed, easy-to-understand guide on the differences between cow and goat milk formulas.
Whether you're a parent struggling to choose the right formula or just interested in learning all the differences, this guide is for you! Read on to learn more about goat milk versus cow milk formula.
Table of contents
- How do you prepare cow's milk versus goat's milk?
- Cow VS Goat: consistency, color and taste of the formula
- Advantages of cow's milk over goat's milk
- Lactose intolerance + sensitivity
- cow milk allergy
- Quick Closing Questions
There is no essential difference between the production of goat milk feed and cow milk feed. The preparation only varies depending on the type of cow or goat milk formula you choose (powder formula, liquid concentrate, ready-to-feed). The type of milk used in these formulas does not affect how they are prepared. All European infant formula powders must be mixed with water that has been boiled and then cooled. It's always best to follow the preparation instructions on the back of each box or container.
many executivesBaby foodBrands started biddingGoat Milk Formulasin addition to their cow's milk formulas. To name just a fewKopfOffers aGoat milk formulathat comes in 4 steps.HalloOffers aGerman goat formulathat comes in 3 steps.JoviejforgiveWe also offer a goat milk formula that is done in 3 steps.
Cow VS Goat: consistency, color and taste of the formula
Let's start by saying that the two are very similar when it comes to consistency and babies all over the world like them both. There is little difference in color and taste between the two, but both have many health benefits.
A notable difference between the two is that goat's milk tends to have a stronger flavor than cow's milk. This isn't usually a problem, although you areSwitching from cow's milk to goat's milkand your baby is already used to the taste of cow's milk, it may take a while to get used to the new taste. This is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about. With consistency, you will get used to it quickly enough!
Goat's milk is naturally homogenized, which means fresh cow's milk goes through the artificial homogenization process so the fat doesn't settle out and float on top of the milk, the goat's milk remains naturally consistent and smooth. Regardless of the process, there are no major differences as both are homogenized. Cow's milk contains more carotene, which makes the milk appear a little more yellow or creamy white (goats also have carotene in their diet, but efficiently convert it to vitamin A).
Both cow and goat milk are highly nutritious and can play an important role in your baby's early development. Both formula types have a similar nutritional value and contain protein, carbohydrates (lactose), fats, micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and water.
On closer inspection, both differ in composition. Let's look at goat milk nutrition first. The nutritional value of goat milk contains more calcium, potassium and vitamin A; whereas cow's milk contains more vitamin B12, selenium and folic acid.
Learn more:Baby food ingredients
However, infant formula is fortified to provide the perfect balance of nutrients for your baby's age: to mimic the makeup of breast milk as closely as possible, both goat's and cow's milk offer formulas that provide the perfect blend of minerals (such as calcium, magnesium, potassium) and vitamins (such as vitamin A, B12, K). This means that cow and goat milk formulations do not differ greatly in nutritional value.
Let's take a closer look at the composition of cow and goat milk.
The fat content in cow and goat milk is similar. Still, goat's milk can be easier to digest and easier on the stomach. Goat's milk has more medium-chain fatty acids than cow's milk, which are absorbed more quickly by the body than long-chain fatty acids, which are more abundant in cow's milk.
Goat milk products are also naturally higher in omega-6 essential fatty acids, which do not play a significant role in infant formula as they are one of the fortified ingredients in the formula.
Both cow and goat milk contain a mixture of two main types of milk protein: whey and casein. Casein is a larger and more complex protein, accounting for approximately 80% of the total cow's milk protein structure.
In human breast milk, the ratio of casein to whey is much lower. It varies during different periods of lactation, from around 20:80 to generally 50:50. For this reason, the protein content in infant formula is adjusted by manufacturers to mimic the composition of human milk, which is adjusted for life stages.
Like breast milk in the early stages of lactation, Pre and Stage 1 formulas contain a higher percentage of whey because it is easier on the stomach. Babies are not born with a fully developed digestive system. Therefore, the content of the formula is always adapted to the age of the baby. The later stages (when your child already has a more developed stomach that can process more complex foods) contain higher levels of casein.
Learn more:European infant formula steps simplified
Also, there are two main types of beta-casein protein in milk, namely A1 and A2 beta-casein. Goat's milk is naturally A2 and is best for sensitive stomachs, while most cow's milk is A1 and in some cases can cause inflammation in the body.
Goat milk's protein profile is most similar to human breast milk as it does not contain A1 casein and BCM-7 is not produced during digestion. That means goat's milk is safer for your baby's tummy!
The advantage of goat milk is that the protein is particularly easy to digest. In the stomach it forms a light and soft curd, easily digestible and not too heavy in the stomach. Cow's milk protein, on the other hand, tends to form a thick, firm curd. This example makes it easy to see the digestive benefits of goat milk protein.
Cow's milk contains a number of different allergens that the body sees as "invaders" and can therefore cause allergic reactions. Goat's milk protein, on the other hand, is less allergenic.
The presence of allergens in cow's milk shouldn't worry you if your baby isn't showing any symptoms or adverse reactions to cow's milk. However, if you suspect there is a problem related to cow's milk allergies, such as B. a slight sensitivity, goat milk food can be an alternative as it has less allergenic properties.
However, if a cow's milk allergy is diagnosed or suspected, giving your baby goat's milk formula is not a suitable alternative, as the similarity to milk can provoke an allergic reaction. Always consult your pediatrician first when making any formula choices or changing your baby's diet.
Lactose is a type of sugar and the main carbohydrate in cow and goat milk. Although both types of milk contain it, goat's milk has less lactose and therefore less sugar. Be sure to check with your doctor if goat diet is right for your child before making any changes. You can find more detailed information on this in the following section Milk intolerance.
Lactose intolerance + sensitivity
Babies who suffer from milk intolerance cannot fully digest lactose, the carbohydrate in cow and goat milk. The result can be discomfort, bloating and gas or an upset stomach after consuming milk or dairy products.
Lactose/milk intolerance is widespread worldwide and a common diagnosis in children. While not a dangerous or life-threatening condition, the symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable and distressing. As a result, parents of babies who have been diagnosed with or are at risk of developing milk intolerance are often looking for alternatives to cow's milk. If you suspect your baby is lactose intolerant, you can look for the following signs:
- Excessive crying (especially after eating)
- loose stools
- nausea vomiting
- bloating and bloating
Cow's milk is one of the most common allergies. While milk intolerance is a digestive problem caused by lactose (milk sugar), cow's milk allergy is actually an immune response to milk protein. Symptoms of milk protein allergy usually develop between 2 and 4 weeks of age and almost always appear within the first 6 months of life. If you suspect your child has a milk protein allergy, you can look out for the following signs:
- to throw up
- Abdominal pain (may be indicated by excessive crying or irritability, especially immediately after eating)
- eczema and skin rashes
Alternative formula options are available for children with cow and milk allergies. Several studies have been conducted into the suitability of goat's milk formula for infants diagnosed with cow's milk allergy, which have concluded that goat's milk is not a suitable alternative.
Although the protein structures of cow's and goat's milk are different, cross-reactions between their allergens are likely to occur, and a large number of children who react to cow's milk protein will also react to goat's milk protein. So if a baby is allergic to cow's milk, they're probably allergic and shouldn't be eating goat's milk either.
Cow and goat milk formulas meet your baby's nutritional needs to ensure a safe and healthy start in life. Since infant formula should be as close as possible to breast milk, infant formula made from cow and goat's milk are fortified in such a way that they result in a similar nutrient composition.
If your baby is showing signs of discomfort or adverse reactions to cow's milk (and there is no known or suspected cow's milk allergy), goat's milk formula may be a good choice as it tends to be easier to digest and more stomach-friendly. However, before choosing a formula or changing formulas, you should always consult your pediatrician.
What is the healthiest milk for babies?
Both goat's milk and cow's milk formula are healthy and nutritious for your baby, as long as you don't have a known or suspected cow's milk allergy or severe lactose intolerance. We recommend choosing an organic formula such aseverywhere in Formelto give your baby a formula made from quality ingredients.
Is baby food with goat's milk closer to breast milk?
Both cow's milk and goat's milk formula should be as similar in composition to breast milk as possible. All European formula manufacturers have to follow strict guidelines as to what ingredients should be included and in what amounts. Therefore, the milk in all formulas is fortified with all the essential nutrients and the nutritional value of goat and cow milk formulas is similar.
Is goat's milk an alternative for babies with cow's milk allergy?
NO. For babies diagnosed with cow's milk allergy, goat's milk is not an option as it contains the same proteins as cow's milk. However, for babies who have any symptoms of discomfort or an adverse reaction to cow's milk (who do not have a diagnosed or suspected allergy), goat's milk formula may be a good choice. Due to various factors (different protein composition, more easily digestible fats), goat's milk formula can be less allergic and more stomach-friendly for the baby. Always consult your pediatrician first when making any changes to your baby's formula.
Why is goat milk food easier to digest?
Goat's milk can be more easily absorbed by the body for several reasons. The main differences are the structure of proteins and fats. Although the fat content of both types of milk is similar, goat's milk naturally contains smaller fat molecules that can be broken down faster. Where cow's milk has more long-chain fatty acids, goat's milk has a higher proportion of medium-chain fatty acids, which can be digested faster. In terms of protein, goat milk proteins form a lighter, softer curd in the stomach that is easily digested. Cow's milk proteins make a harder, heavier curd. In addition, cow's milk contains other known allergens, in particular alpha-S1-casein protein. Goat's milk contains only 11% of this protein content compared to cow's milk and therefore tends to have fewer allergens.
Is Goat Milk Infant Formula an Alternative for Babies with Lactose Intolerance?
It depends on the baby and the severity of the intolerance! Goat's milk is naturally lower in lactose and can therefore be a good alternative for babies with very mild (not severe) milk intolerance. If you suspect lactose intolerance, consult your pediatrician before deciding to switch to goat's milk formula.
How do I know my baby may not tolerate cow food well?
Some symptoms to look out for include discomfort (irritability, excessive crying) after eating, diarrhea, regular nausea and vomiting, gas and bloating. Skin problems like eczema and rashes can also be signs of a bad reaction to cow's milk. If you notice any of these symptoms, consult your pediatrician to determine the cause and the appropriate next steps for your baby.
What can I do if I suspect that my baby does not tolerate cow food?
It's always best to consult your pediatrician if you have any concerns about the formula you are using. Switching to a goat's milk formula may be a good option for you if your baby has stomach problems or other adverse reactions to cow's milk, but it's not a suitable alternative for other babies.
Can I switch from cow's milk to goat's milk?
Yes! If you're switching from a cow to a goat, your baby may take a little longer to get used to it because goat's milk has a stronger flavor. But they will soon get used to it and have a lot of fun! Always consult your pediatrician before changing the formula.
Disclaimer:Breastfeeding is the best nutrition for your baby because breast milk provides your child with all the essential nutrients needed for growth and development. Consult your pediatrician if your child needs additional nutritional supplements.
Please note that this information is based on general trends observed in infants and does not constitute medical advice in any way. Your doctor should be your first source of information and advice when it comes to supporting your child's health. Always consult your pediatrician before making any decisions about your child's diet or if you notice any worrying changes in your child's vomiting patterns.
We hope this article will help you decide what the best organic baby food might be for your child to start organic in life. If you need further assistance, please contact our customer service team. We're here to help! Be sure to sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss the latest information on our formulas.