Best Hypoallergenic Infant Formula: The Ultimate 2023 Guide

45 hours of research 5 minute read

" Some babies with extra sensitive tummies require formulas that are exceptionally easy to digest. "
best hypoallergenic formula

Some babies are born with sensitivity or intolerance to milk protein and have difficulty processing formula milk and sometimes even breast milk. Typically, pediatricians recommend a hypoallergenic formula for babies showing signs of milk protein allergy, including diarrhea, vomiting, wheezing, irritability, and eczema.

Thankfully, the presence of true milk protein allergies in babies is only 2-3%.

Finding the right hypoallergenic infant formula for your baby can be a stressful process. This article is a complete guide to choosing the best hypoallergenic formula for your baby who cannot tolerate regular formula. Keep reading to find more information.

What Is A Hypoallergenic Baby Formula?

If your baby is allergic to cow's milk protein, the symptoms can start appearing between the first three to six months of life. Hypoallergenic formula is specially designed for babies who have problems digesting cow's milk protein.

The term "hypoallergenic" means that the formula proteins have been hydrolyzed or broken down into smaller ones. This formula causes a less allergic reaction and is well tolerated by infants. Depending on how severe your baby has an allergic reaction determines how small the formula protein should be.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) , the hypoallergenic formula should be:

  • Tolerated by at least 90% of infants with allergies.
  • Studied in infants having cow's milk allergy.
  • Studied in a scientific clinical trial.

What Are Different Types Of Hypoallergenic Formula?

Below are some hypoallergenic formulas to choose from:

1. Partially Hydrolyzed Formulas

Partially hydrolyzed formulas contain partially broken milk protein. These formulas aren't truly considered hypoallergenic because of several sized proteins. They cannot be used for babies with milk protein allergies.

2. Extensively Hydrolyzed Formulas

In these formulas, the protein is extensively broken down into tiny pieces, and therefore, it is easily absorbed and digested by the baby. Such formulas are known as genuinely hypoallergenic and are tolerated well by 90% of infants.

3. Amino Acid-Based Formulas

These formulas lack small or large protein molecules because, in these formulas, protein is broken down into their building blocks, called amino acids. These are 100% non-allergic and can be used for infants who are allergic to extensively hydrolyzed formulas.

4. Soy-Based Formulas

Soy-based formulas are used as an excellent alternative to cow's milk, but they are not considered hypoallergenic. According to research, about 50% of infants who are allergic to cow's milk will also react to soy formula. So, babies with cow's milk intolerance should not be given soy-based formulas.

5. Goat Milk Formulas

These formulas are a safe option when babies are sensitive to cow's milk, but do not really have other allergies.

When Should You Choose Hypoallergenic Formula For Your Baby?

holle samp photo 2

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, a hypoallergenic formula should only be used when the baby has apparent medical symptoms. If a baby has family history of food allergies, a hypoallergenic formula should be considered. The probability of food allergy in babies increases by 10% if the mother/father has allergies and further increases by 20% if both parents have allergies.

If the baby allergic to milk protein shows the following symptoms, they may be prescribed a hypoallergenic formula:

1. Reflux

Spitting is an entirely normal phenomenon, but it may become a point of concern if a baby has more severe symptoms. A baby with severe reflux shows the following symptoms:

  • Arching away from the breast or bottle
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Gagging or choking
  • Irritability
  • Throwing up lots of liquid

All these signs may indicate a milk protein allergy.

2. Constipation

If your baby isn't tolerating cow's milk protein, constipation is a sign. A constipated baby has hard, pellet-like stools.

3. Gassiness

Gassiness is normal in babies with a sterile GI system. However, if a baby has an allergy or milk intolerance, they may experience excessive gassiness with a foul odor, clenched fists, and bloating.

4. Bloody Stools

Infants' food intolerance and allergies may form small ulcers in the GI tract, resulting in bloody stools.

5. Diarrhea

Hypoallergenic formula is required when a baby has watery and foul-smelling diarrhea due to milk protein allergy. Diarrhea may also lead to dehydration and cause severe medical complications.

6. Vomiting

A forceful projection of stomach fluids is known as vomiting, which may signify a severe allergic reaction to milk protein.

7. Colic

Extreme fussiness and crying for more than 3 hours a day, even if the baby's diaper has been changed, is known as colic. Colic affects about 20% of infants.

8. Itchy Rash

If your baby develops an itchy rash or hives after feeding formula, this may indicate an allergic reaction to cow's milk. Your baby can also experience eczema as a result of allergy and intolerance. The baby develops red, itchy bumps on the face, neck, and scalp in eczema.

Things To Consider While Choosing A HA Formula

holle samp photo 3

Before purchasing a hypoallergenic formula for your baby, you should consider the following things:

1. Choosing The Right Brand

It requires some research and a careful approach to find the best product for your baby having a hard time digesting regular formula. You should look for a reputable European brand, such as HiPP, Holle, or Lebenswert that have passed a test of time and are in the market for decades.

2. Nutritional Choice

Baby formulas should always be nutritious and manufactured with wholesome ingredients. A hypoallergenic formula must contain the following vital elements:

  • Minerals
  • Vitamins
  • Probiotics
  • Fortified iron
  • DHA and ARA

3. Organic Certification

European formulas are 100% organic certified and follow the strict EU Commission guidelines.

4. Taste

Many formulas out there come with a terrible and unpleasant taste. Some formulas have good taste achieved from taste-enhancing ingredients. You should choose a formula free of artificial flavors, taste-enhancing agents, and corn syrup.

5. Pricing

As a parent, you should never compromise on your baby's health. Do not sacrifice good quality over price. Since the hypoallergenic formula is unique, it comes with higher prices. Also, amino acid-based formulas have even higher price tags.

Best Hypoallergenic Formula For Babies

Your pediatrician may recommend formulas from different brands that may work for your baby. The following are some recommended formulas by Organic Life Start, and are all hypoallergenic formula without corn syrup:

1. HiPP HA Formula: Best Seller

Contains Probiotics & Prebiotics

No sugar, no corn syrup, no soy

Hydrolyzed milk proteins reduce allergic reactions

Popular for constipated babies

Check Price
HiPP HA Formula

HiPP HA formula comes in three stages (stage PRE, stage 1, and stage 2). With its special formulation, HiPP HA is recommended for babies with allergic reactions.

  • Why Choose? If your baby is sensitive to or allergic to cow's milk. If you haven't tried any other European hypoallergenic formula, you can use this formula.
    • Contains 100% whey (no casein).
    • Has hydrolyzed protein.
    • Has the same lactose content as a non-HA formula.
    • Contains starch.
    • It contains prebiotics and probiotics.
    • Contains DHA & ARA for brain development.

    Check Price

Contains Probiotics & Prebiotics

No sugar, no corn syrup, no soy

Reduced lactose with hydrolyzed milk protein

Easy to digest formula for sensitive babies

Check Price
HiPP Comfort Formula

HiPP Comfort Milk formula is suitable for constipated babies and sensitive to some ingredients in baby formulas, such as lactose. The formula has reduced lactose content so that it can be less irritating to the gut.

  • Why Choose? If your baby is newborn to 1 year old and has constipation, colic, and food allergy.
    • Contains hydrolyzed protein.
    • It has a special fat structure to aid easy digestion and soft stools.
    • Reduced lactose to reduce gut irritation.
    • Easily digestible.
    • It contains prebiotics and probiotics.
    • Contains DHA & ARA for brain development.

    Check Price

Clean formula ingredients

No palm oil

Contains DHA, & ALA

Popular for babies alergic to cow's milk

Check Price
Holle Goat Formula

Holle Goat Milk formula is ideal for babies to avoid cow's milk protein allergy. The formula is manufactured with 100% organic goat milk that is easy on the baby's digestive system. The formula also relieves constipation.

  • Why Choose? Your baby has constipation or colic and cannot tolerate cow's milk well.
    • 100% organic goat milk.
    • Contains simple and wholesome ingredients for sensitive tummies.
    • No prebiotics and probiotics
    • Free of palm oil, which can cause digestive issues in babies.
    • Contains DHA & ARA for brain development.

    Check Price

Clean formula ingredients

No palm oil

Contains natural whey, DHA, & ALA

Popular for babies alergic to cow's milk

Check Price
Holle Goat Dutch Formula

Holle Goat Dutch formula is perfect for infants who are sensitive to cow's milk. The formula is demeter certified (organic++), contains organic goat milk that is gentle on the baby's stomach and is easier to digest.

  • Why Choose? Your baby is sensitive to cow's milk and digestive issues.
    • Contains 100% organic demeter certified goat milk (organic ++)
    • Contains simple and wholesome ingredients for sensitive tummies.
    • No prebiotics and probiotics
    • Free of palm oil, which can cause digestive issues in babies.
    • Contains DHA & ARA for brain development.

    Check Price

Hypoallergenic Formula - In Summary

Some babies are naturally allergic to cow's milk protein; therefore, their digestive system sometimes cannot process breastmilk or formula milk. You can observe symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, reflux, or constipation due to an allergic reaction. If your baby is allergic to milk protein, you should opt for a hypoallergenic formula. Organic Life Start is dedicated to providing your baby with the best formulas that are easy to digest: HiPP HA, HiPP Comfort, Holle Goat, and Holle Goat Dutch formulas. These formulas can be a perfect solution to deal with your baby allergies.

Most Popular Hypoallergenic Baby Formula

  1. HiPP HA Formula
  2. HiPP Comfort Formula
  3. Holle Goat Formula