What is the best way to transition a baby from formula to whole milk?

CANDY - posted on 05/01/2011 ( 45 moms have responded )

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To all the ladies who have been through this before..What ideas, helpful ways do you you have to transition your baby from formula to whole milk? My baby is 10 months old and i would like to start giving him a little milk to see if he likes it but is it too early? or can i maybe mix it with rice cereal, oatmeal? i just want to make sure he can transition and not be one of those babies who has a hard time when they turn 1 with whole milk..thanks so much for the input!!

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Jennifer - posted on 05/10/2011

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hi i just want to say first off, i know many moms wont like wat i have to say, but im giving my hoenst opinion, my son is going on 9 months next week, and while the formula is recommended until at least a year, my son wouldnt drink it, he would refuse anytype of formula from every bottle and nipple i could find, so i had gone to see his dr about wat i could do to fix the problem, and he suggested i start him on whole milk, at the time he was a little less the 8 months old, and the only thing he asked was i give him vitamine suplments, i know at first i didnt want to give him vitamines at all, but as time went on he was still drinking the milk, and has never had a single reactions to it, i would also like to add that i myself have a dairy intolorence, but for some reason it has not affected him, so i think it all depends on you, and as for the transition part, i just went straight from the formula right to the whole milk, and didnt have any problems,
hope this helps :D

Elizabeth - posted on 05/12/2011

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My girl's doc advised to start whole milk at one year. With my girls, I started introducing whole milk a little at a time. If they usually got a 6 oz bottle, I would put 5 oz of formula and 1 oz of milk, I did that for the first week, then increased the milk amount until finally they were completely on milk. They adjusted very well this way with no problems at all. Good luck:)

Elizabeth - posted on 05/12/2011

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My little girl just turned 1yr old April 20th and her pedi. recommended cold turkey. So we went home and gave her a sippy cup of milk and she loved the milk but for some reason didn't like it in a sippy cup. She had been drinking from a straw for over a week so we bought the straw toddler cups and haven't had a problem since. She didn't even realize that the bottles were gone or anything. She's underweight due to a very active metabolism(I had the same problem as a child) but she eats VERY well and always drinks the amount of ounces of milk a day her doctor wants her to have. Just make sure he gets a balanced diet after going off the formula. You don't want him to miss any of the recommended food group servings or he won't get enough of vitamins, minerals, etc he needs a day.Hope your child is as easy to switch as mine, good luck hun!

Autumn - posted on 05/10/2011

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I started my son on 1/2 formula and 1/2 milk for a couple days in a sippy. After a couple days I did warm milk at night and still 1/2 & 1/2 during the day. Soon he switched with no problem and was completely off formula at 11 months. (also bottle broke at 9-10 months which helped too)! Hope this helps!!

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Codyandrachel - posted on 03/17/2014

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My daughter is 13 months and been off formula a few days before she turned one.. I give her juice during the day in a sippy and a bottle of milk at night. But she wakes up a few times a night. She used to sleep all night! I've tried putting some rice in it but she still wakes up a few times & spits up at least once a night now not aloft just like a quarter size... Idk what to do to help, any tips?

Danielle - posted on 05/11/2011

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Try him on sunshine powdered milk, thats how my mum changed all of her kids from formula to milk, and its working great for my nephew hasnt had any problems and you make it up just like formula :)

Kimberly - posted on 05/11/2011

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It is best to check with your pediatrician. Most of them recommend you wait til 1 year. Jane Marenghi said it best, though.

Erin - posted on 05/11/2011

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You've had a lot of responses & I'm not sure what's been said so far, so I may be repeating someone. Here's the best way to do it.
1st week, 1/4 milk to 3/4 formula
2nd week, 1/2 milk to 1/2 formula
3rd week, 3/4 milk to 1/4 formula
4th week, just milk
It always worked great with my kids. Good luck!

Cyndi - posted on 05/11/2011

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My son is 17 months and doesn't drink very much milk at all. His pediatrician advised us to keep him on toddler formula until 18-24 months (1-2 bottles/cups per day) because it is SO MUCH more nutritious than cow's milk and doesn't have all the extra fat that can be hard for little tummies to digest. The toddler formula is also much less expensive than then infant version and usually comes with a coupon right in the container. There's no rush to switch to milk - just make sure your baby is getting all the nutrients they need during this important time in their development.

Sarah - posted on 05/10/2011

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Hi there my bubs is 9 mths. I put her on cows milk when she was 8 mths cos she wouldn't drink the formula and she loves it. I just put half boiled water and half cow milk. Then increase by20 mls every week. One more week she will be on full bottles of it. She is a ggreat eater swell. But had noo trouble at all. Then if your worried about anything u can buy penivite. Now she drinks up to five full bottles a day so all good .

Christa - posted on 05/10/2011

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honestly doctors and w.i.c. will tell you that it's too early,but really its what you feel, you are the parent. as long as you think that you child would be ok with trying a little milk then do it. do 1/4 to half of what your baby drinks now. do that for a few days. transfer like 2 formula feedings to milk for the first 2-3 days then gradually increase the milk feedings and decrease the formula feedings. but it is up to you. my mom had all her children on whole milk at 3 months. my doctor for my son said 6 months would be ok if i wanted to put my son on whole milk.

Samantha - posted on 05/10/2011

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my little girl was 10months old when i gave her our milk. they is nuffin on trying stuff out just not rearly like 6weeks old. but just try n see if they like it or not

Alyssa - posted on 05/10/2011

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My nurse told me to start using it in cereals & have alittle more milk than needed & give spoonfuls of milk. (at 10months) than I slowly introduced normal milk as a drink by 2weeks after she was 1year old she was drinking milk fully & no formula. But they should still have formula until 12months. Good luck

Elisabeth - posted on 05/10/2011

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I think the main reason they say to wait until 1 year to switch is that it is hard for babies to digest cow's milk. If your son is big for his age, it's probably fine, because if he's big, so is his digestive tract and he can probably handle a little milk. I personally waited until my son was a year old (mostly due to my mom being paranoid), but I'm not going to tell you how to raise your child cause I hate when people do that to me. Once my son was 1, I started replacing a bottle or sippy of formula with one of milk, and he loved it. After a few days he was completely on milk.

Pamela - posted on 05/10/2011

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I mixed the milk and formula together, first just a taste, and then increase the milk amount each week. You can mix it with cereals, but you need to follow normal "new food" proceedures, to make sure there is no allergies.

Shantelle - posted on 05/10/2011

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you should not put sugar in milk as lactose is already a form of sugar and cannot be broken down easily if too much lactose is in the system along with the sugar this could cause some form of lactose intolerance!!!and if you dont want to give cows milk that is fine try going with rice milk instead and supplement the calcium with other calcium rich foods!!

Julie - posted on 05/10/2011

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My son had no trouble at all. I started giving him whole milk in a sippy cup at meals at about 11 months and stuck with the formula in his nighttime and morning bottles until I ran out. Once I ran out of that last can I switched over to milk all the time and he had no trouble at all. I think you'll find that your child doesn't even notice the difference. Good luck!

Lynn - posted on 05/10/2011

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I don't know where you are,but here in UK we are told babies cannot have cows milk until 1 year old as they have more chance of developing allergies if they have it too early.

Soma G - posted on 05/10/2011

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Hi! I must begin with the fact that my baby is a very choosy eater & if he likes something, it is my red letter day!!! I shifted him from formula to whole milk at 12 months. He was drinking milk thrice a day & once during night, so I changed two feeds into whole milk & kept the late night & midnight feeds at formula. That apart he eats some sort of cereal dish every evening & that is also prepared in whole milk. I made him like whole milk by adding a bit of sugar in it, he adapted smoothly & now is mostly on whole milk unless I am travelling & carrying powder with me as that is easier.
All the best!

Terri Lynn - posted on 05/09/2011

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The human body is allergic to milk. I never gave my family whole milk. We used almond milk. Dairy milk has cholesterol in it and is from the abusive dairy industry. It has pus in it. Check out the 1998 edition of Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care for more info on this. It causes terrible pain in many kids and a vegan diet is the very healthiest. Check out my group on Facebook for more info and help. www.facebook.com/vegetarianpage I am the administrator and over 123,000 (growing by 5,000 a month) people are there to help. We post much health information. Also visit www.pcrm.org for more help and info from doctors.

Julie - posted on 05/09/2011

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Doctors don't recommend giving any cow's milk before 1 year old. I have several kids with lactose intolerance and one of them could only recently drink cow's milk without any problems and she's 8! When your baby turns 1 just offer milk in a sipper cup instead of formula. You'll know pretty quickly if there is a problem. Your baby will either have a rash, wheezing, chronic diarrhea or intense intestinal cramping which will cause him to cry inconsolably.

Shantelle - posted on 05/09/2011

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I would wait till the little one is a year old first but what I did with the first daughter was I replaced 1 ounce of formula with milk every bottle for a couple days make sure there was no probs and just kept replacing ounce for ounce every like 5days to a week and walah on whole milk and at this time i would also replace any daytime bottles with sippy cups one bottle at a time!!

Erin - posted on 05/09/2011

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you can just give it to them, you dont have to slowly do it. If they have had dairy products like yogurt of cheese, they are not allergic. Weaning them off formula is not needed. You run out of the formula you have and give them milk, simple as that.

Mindee - posted on 05/09/2011

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Personally, I wouldn't ever switch my baby/child to cow milk ever. Not only is it advised by health professionals to wait until AT LEAST a year of age before even introducing it to them, but animal protein has been linked to causing type 2 diabetes. I give my toddler soy milk or rice milk when she wants 'milk', and water the rest of the time. I make sure she gets plenty of calcium through other foods. She also takes a gummy multi-vitamin and calcium vitamin each day. (So do I) =P I'm just sharing this so you have a different perspective to consider. Best of luck. =)

Alma - posted on 05/09/2011

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By the way, I use about 3-4Tbsp of cow's milk in her cereals. And if your baby has a hard time with it, then wait a little longer.

Alma - posted on 05/09/2011

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My baby is almost 8mos. old. She east lots of solids now and almost anything that she can get her hands or mouth on. I've been recently using cow's milk in her oatmeal or wheat cereal. Usually once every day or every other day just so her body can get a taste. She's been doing great! And I find it a very subtle and safe way for her to get cow's milk. And so far, so good!

Lisa - posted on 05/09/2011

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We just gave ours whole milk in a sippy cup starting at about 10 months. Usually with meals.When I knew there were no issues, I just starting replacing formula for milk in bottles.

With my first, we discussed it with our doctor and he was okay with starting whole milk at 10 months because she had a good healthy diet and had shown no food allergies or digestive issues.

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I didn't start giving my daughter milk in a bottle until she was over a year. However, at lunch or dinner, I would give her about a quarter of a cup of milk in a sippy, just so she started getting used to the taste. Then when she was a year, I would do half and half. Then I went to the Similac Toddler Formula for about a month switching every other bottle with formula and then plain milk. She seemed to transition just fine.

Maryland - posted on 05/09/2011

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It is really not an easy way of doing it. Just do it one day am just see if the child will take it.

Amber - posted on 05/09/2011

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My pediatrician told us at our 9 month check up that it is OK to start gradually introducing a little bit of cow's milk (whole milk) in cereal and things. He was not concerned about allergies or anything. Now that he is 1, we have been gradually trying it out with our son with his solid foods and he seems to be accepting it, although he will only drink a little at a time.

Kattie - posted on 05/09/2011

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I went from brastmilk to whole milk at around 11 months, but we had to do the miture until I got her fully off the breastmilk. She also didn't want to drink milk out of anything but a bottle,so I found her sippy cups that were similar to bottle nipples to begin with. She didn't drink a lot to begin with, so we made sure to feed her things like yogurt to keep the dairy nutrients going.

Jessica - posted on 05/09/2011

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your not suppose to give them cows milk till there 1 years old and i just went straight from formula to cows milk with no problems and theres alot of conflicting advise given to you so i would just ask a health visitor rather than listen to every1 else

Thepmala - posted on 05/09/2011

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I have a picky eater and I want too sure about switching him over and not providing him with enough nutrients. I made his cereal and oatmeal with milk just to see how he would take it and he was fine. once he was a year old I introduced whole milk to him and he loved it. I later switched to 2% since the whole milk was too fatty and it made him vomit a little more often than normal. he is doing great now.

Kelly - posted on 05/09/2011

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Hi, it worked for us by adding whole milk into the formula. So start with adding like 20 mills each day or week if you want and cutting that back in the formula just so baby is getting both. After a while he won't even know the difference. My boy transitioned well without even knowing anything and believe me he is quite fussy! Hope that helps :-)

Jane - posted on 05/08/2011

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Hi Candy,
I have a 6 month old baby boy and a 12 year old girl. I started with my little girl at the age og 6 months, and just started with my son. Every night at dinner time I give him a half a glass ( the plastic mugs for kids) of Non Fat milk. He loves it. If u have never tryed this before then I would sugest u try that :D see how it works. Cant wait to hear the resaults.
BR Jane

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I waited until 12 months and then went "cold turkey". I ditched the formula AND bottles. My son was completely fine with it. No fussing at all. I'd try it if he seems to like the milk at first.

Paola - posted on 05/08/2011

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My baby just turned one on April 18th. And on the 19th is when I started giving her whole milk. However, I did it gradually. One week I did 6oz of formula and 2 oz of milk, 2nd week 4 oz formula and 4oz of milk, 3rd week 2 oz formula and 6 oz milk, and by the 4th week she was on full formula. I did it gradually because I heard it upsets their tummy and they get very bad farts. I hope this help

Brooke - posted on 05/08/2011

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Really not supposed to intro cows milk until after 1 y/o because it can increase the risk that your child will develop a dairy allergy.

Brianna - posted on 05/04/2011

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mix the formula and whole milk together and over a week or so cut down how much formula is in the mixture

OhJessie - posted on 05/04/2011

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Formula tastes disgusting - giving them milk ought to be easy - and yes, you can put a tad of chocolate in it if need be. Chocolate is NOT poison.

Louise - posted on 05/04/2011

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It is recommended that you do not give cows milk until 12 months due to stomach irritations. I let my daughter go onto the follow on milks until she was 18 months to make sure she was getting enough iron and vitamins in her diet as she was a poor eatter. Then I tried giving her half milk half formula and she refused to drink it. So I had to add just one once of milk a day and then added two ounces of milk to her formula and then by day 5 she was 5 ounces of milk and 3 formula and then day 6 she was full cows milk.

Joni - posted on 05/04/2011

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Hi,
I have done this 3 times now and it has worked fine with each kid. I started when they were a little over 11 mos. I did half formula/half whole milk and then (as mentioned be the previous poster) did 3/4 whole milk with 1/4 formula. I did this very gradually until they were 12 mos. It worked great!

Charity - posted on 05/02/2011

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I introduced my son, who just turned 1 on the 19th, to whole milk at 10 months and he was completely off of formula and on whole milk at 11 months. At 10 months he was down to 2 bottles of formula a day anyway, he had one when he woke up and one before bed...so i just substituted the one in the morning for whole milk in a bottle at first and then about a week later we got rid of the formula bottle at night and went straight to whole milk. My son wasn;t too picky about sippy vs. bottle so after the got used to the whole milk we also took away the bottles and went to sippys only. My little tip of advice is about the first week or so when I introduced him to whole milk I had to warm it just a bit to take the chill off bc he wasnt used to drinking such a cold liquid. I say good luck and my baby is perfectly healthy and happy even though I didn't wait until his first birthday to give him whole milk ;) as long as they are ready and willing I say go ahead and try but don't force. Good luck to you!

Jane - posted on 05/01/2011

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12 mos. and at that time, do it half and half for a few days, then 1/4 and 3/4 for a few days and then all milk.

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