How to know the best baby formula for sensitive stomach

No parent wants to see their child suffering, which is why if you are a parent who uses a formula, you will want to pay attention to many signs. If you see that your baby is suffering from a sensitive stomach, you will need to find the best baby formula for sensitive stomach. And here comes our role in helping you do just that. So keep up and read this article to decide what formula is best for babies with sensitive stomachs.

What is a sensitive formula?

Sensitive formulas- also known as gentle formulas– are a bit different from your usual formula. They are used when the digestive system acts up and shows signs of discomfort. This irritation can show as fussiness due to spit-up or gas. 

Usually, you can call a formula sensitive when it is lactose-free or has small amounts of it. Also if the formula has whey to casein higher than what is used in the normal infant formula. Sometimes the sensitive formula uses a broken-down protein to offer relief to the digestive system. Those features help release the gas in the stomach and ease the spit-up. This in turn allows your baby to be in better shape and it stops the discomfort.

So to know if your baby needs a sensitive formula and before you start the hunt for the best baby formula for sensitive stomach you will need to know if your baby needs a sensitive formula to begin with. But if your baby does need one, you may want to read this article to the end and maybe the answer to the best baby formula for sensitive stomach will be what you need.

Do you need a sensitive formula?

Before we delve into finding the best baby formula for sensitive stomach, we will need to discuss the fact that whether or not your baby needs a sensitive formula to begin with. And for that answer, you will need to read the following.

If your little one needs to follow a special diet due to having a sensitive tummy, there will be signs shown. The main thing you will see is signs of discomfort and fussiness. This can be due to extra gas of reflux or spit-up. Diarrhea or constipation or chronic reflux or vomiting might also be the reason for this. In all cases, you will need to visit your doctor and have them help you with whether or not you need to switch your formula and even suggest a better formula type.

For instance, in case your baby has chronic reflux, you can switch to a formula type that has a high whey protein percentage or you can choose a formula that has a thicker texture. Also, if the case is baby eczema, then a hydrolyzed protein formula should do the trick, or if the baby is always constipated, then finding and using a formula with no palm oil should help immensely. 

So rest assured that when you know the exact issue with your baby, you will be able to find the best baby formula for sensitive stomach for them.

How to choose the best baby formula for sensitive stomach

The first step in knowing the best formula for sensitive baby stomachs is knowing how to choose one. Getting the one you need from the sea of brands out there is no easy task. So we will help you to take a step in the right direction. We will point out the main features to look for. 

  • Hydrolyzed formula: those are some of the best baby formula for sensitive stomachs. They contain pre-digested proteins, which means that the protein has been broken down into smaller pieces for easier digestion to the babies, and they proved to do wonders with gases, reflux, colic, and spit-up.
  • Reduced lactose formulas: they are similar to the hydrolyzed formulas. The reduced lactose is used for better digestion and less discomfort. It is achieved by breaking down lactose into small molecules and removing only some of them. This is also considered the best formula for breastfed baby with sensitive stomach.
  • Lactose-free or dairy-free formulas: they are different types of formulas in the same category. Some babies are allergic or intolerant to milk or lactose in milk. If they are allergic to milk itself, then a formula with no cow’s milk is your best choice. But if they are intolerant -which means they are allergic to lactose-, then a lactose-free formula is your answer. Soy-based formulas can help with both cases though. 
  • Closer to breastmilk formulas: is on the list of what baby formula is best for sensitive stomach. Some companies aim for mimicking breast milk when creating the formula -which is great for your baby as breast milk is the best meal you can offer-. This is done by adding ingredients that you can only find in mother’s milk like DHA, ARA, and fat protein blend.
  • Additions: the best baby formula for sensitive stomach should be additions-free. A formula for a sensitive baby already requires extra care. So you should make sure that there are none of the industrial components added, such as colors, sugar, or gelatin. And you should always check with your pediatrician if anything on the ingredients list seems like it doesn’t fit.
  • Others: you should also check the nutrients and prebiotics added to the formula. As they can boost your child’s immune system, especially if they have a sensitive stomach. Availability of the product and the price range can also be important factors to consider when choosing the best baby formula for sensitive stomach. As those can be both expensive and rare. 
How to choose the best baby formula for sensitive stomach

How to choose the best baby formula for sensitive stomach

What is the best baby formula for sensitive stomach?

A question that parents always ask is what is the best formula for babies with sensitive stomachs. The answer to that question though is simple yet different to each person. The key to choosing the best baby formula for sensitive stomach is knowing the reason for the said stomach. Once you figure out the reason, you will only need to choose a brand and you will be good to go. A visit to the pediatrician will most probably help you figure out the reason and thus choose a better kind.

When you choose the best baby formula for sensitive stomach, there will not be a brand better than the other. As all brands have to go through the Food and Drug Administration. Every brand on the shelf out there is approved by the FDA so do not worry.

What you need to make sure of though, is following the manufacturer’s instructions when you are preparing a formula. Having a watery formula can make it less beneficial with fewer nutrients. But a thick formula can harm the baby and will definitely cause stomach issues.

When you put your hand on the reason for their sensitivity, you will be ready to choose the best baby formula for sensitive stomach. That is why we will give you a list of reasons for the sensitive stomach and what to do in each case.

Best baby formula for sensitive stomach with colic

The most common reason for crying babies after you feed and change them is colic. But before you proceed to take a step in this direction, you should pay the doctor a visit. Just to make sure that you are in the right direction. Babies start having colic from the age of three weeks and it continues until the age of four to six months. Do not bother asking about the reason though, it is still unknown to this day.

There are a few things that you can do to help in this case. First, make sure that you are getting the concentration of the formula right. Or you can just switch to a ready-to-use formula. Secondly, switching to a formula with a different source of milk might be helpful. So you can choose from cow’s milk or goat’s milk or even soy milk. Thirdly, you can go for a formula that contains DHA and ARA. Those are used to mimic breast milk so they are less likely to cause colic. Just be aware that it can take a couple of days for the new formula to work. And those might be just what you need to get the best formula for sensitive baby stomachs.

The best formula for gassy babies 

Normally, babies have gas all the time, and that is completely fine. Sometimes though it can be painful for some babies. The reason for gas is that the digestive system is not complete in babies. So it produces air when it breaks food or babies themselves can gulp air when they are eating or even crying. This is common from the age of one to four months until the babies’ body completes the digestive system. The main reason for the gasses is improper feeding but it can also be sensitivity towards the formula you are using. So watch out for the reason as it might ruin both you and the baby’s day. 

If you see that your baby’s stool is foul-smelling or that their sleeping pattern is not regular or they are fussy, it can be a sign that your baby is suffering from gas. When you pick formula for gassy children, you need to choose one with predigested milk proteins and fewer hormones in its ingredients as they are easier to digest. 

Usually, the best baby formula for sensitive stomachs due to gas and colic is Enfamil Gentlease Infant Formula. 

Dairy sensitive babies  

Having a dairy-sensitive child can be a pain, for both you and the baby. Fortunately though, this only happens to 7 percent of babies. And 80 percent of them outgrow it by time. The reason why this happens in the first place is that the immune system regards the proteins in the cow’s milk used in the formula as a strange substance that can harm the baby, which in turn triggers the release of histamine that causes the allergic reaction. The signs for this are vomiting, spitting up, gagging, diarrhea and blood in the stool. Also, colic wheezing, coughing, and swelling- especially in the mouth or the throat- can be signs of this. Skin rash is a huge sign though. 

If you see these signs occurring for a couple of days you should head for the doctor right away. Do not try to diagnose the symptoms yourself. The doctor will tell you what to do and help you with what baby formula is best for sensitive stomach. Usually, babies with cow’s milk allergy are also allergic to soy milk, so you should choose a hypoallergenic formula with a hydrolysate protein or an amino acid-based formula as the protein in them is broken down and it’s unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. 

One of the best formulas for milk sensitive babies is the Neocate Syneo Infant Hypoallergenic Amino-Acid Based. 

Neocate SyneoTM Infant

The best formula for lactose sensitive babies

The best formula for lactose sensitive babies

The best formula for lactose sensitive babies

Milk or lactose intolerance is a condition where babies are sensitive to lactose in milk, which is lactose. This case is different from milk intolerance as the babies are allergic to lactose, not proteins. But just like it, do not diagnose it yourself and visit the doctor.

If this sensitivity is due to an infection or a sickness, the baby should be able to overcome it once you treat the reason. So it will be safe to drink milk after that. 

But, if this is a case of congenital lactose intolerance then unfortunately it is permanent as the body does not secrete the lactase enzymes itself. And you will be able to notice it from day one. As the baby won’t be able to tolerate even breast milk as well. The symptoms, in this case, would be diarrhea, stomach cramping, gasses, and bloating. The best formula for babies, in this case, would be a lactose-free formula.

Best organic baby formula for sensitive stomachs

Some parents commit to the organic lifestyle and want their babies to join them in that style as well. We know that it is already hard finding food for yourself. But it will be easier to commit your baby to that lifestyle. As for your baby, you will just buy an organic formula that companies thought of and provided. What makes the organic formula special is how nutritious it is. The ingredients are without any additions like antibiotics, pesticides, or growth hormones. This is more beneficial for your baby and is less likely to cause an upset stomach.

The organic formula has the stamp of the U.S. Department of Agriculture also known as USDA. This is the entity that issues the regulations for any processed foods.

Just beware that sometimes the packaging of a formula says that it is an organic formula. This only means that at least 70% is organic and that the rest of it has no genetic manipulation done. Only the USDA stamp means a 100% organic ingredients list.

The reviews of the parents suggest that the best organic baby formula for sensitive stomachs is Earth’s Best Organic Sensitivity Infant Formula.

Best baby formula for Acid reflux sensitive babies

Acid reflux is one of the most irritating conditions that can occur to your baby. It happens when the acid of the stomach along with the food go back up the throat and esophagus. You will know the mild case as spit-up. This starts at the age of 3 months until the esophagus is completely developed. 

One or two spit-ups a day along with normal weight gain is nothing to worry about. But, if it happens more than five times a day along with some symptoms like weight loss, refusal to eat, bloody stools, or bloody vomit, then you should head directly to the doctor.

For mild acid reflux, adding a spoon or two of rice cereal to the formula should do the trick and keep the contents at bay. This way the food will be heavier and thus harder to go back up. In case of severe acid reflux, the way to go should be hydrolyzed protein or soy formulas or even a specialized formula. So your action is based on the severity. In all cases though, any action you take your doctor should approve.

If you want to know the best baby formula for sensitive stomach with acid reflux, you may want to consider: Enfamil A.R. Infant Formula.


The best baby formula for sensitive stomach depends on the reason for this sensitivity. Each condition has its course of action according to your baby. And do not forget that your pediatrician should approve any changes that you make in your baby’s diet.  


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