How much formula do babies need?

Morning In America

(NewsNation) — Parents, rejoice: baby formula maker Abbott said Monday it reached an agreement with the Food and Drug Administration to restart production at its largest domestic factory.

It’s a key step toward easing the nationwide shortage that started after contamination issues forced the company to shut down its largest plant in Sturgis, Michigan.

It will take about eight weeks for formula to hit shelves, meaning the shortage — and struggle — still aren’t over for many. In the meantime, how much formula will babies need to get by?

Newborns

Newborns, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, do not need a lot of formula to be full. Parents should start by offering their babies 1-2 ounces of formula every two or three hours, the CDC says, if they are not getting breast milk. In the next few weeks and months, infant formula-fed babies will need to be fed about every 3-4 hours.

6 to 12 months

Babies that are six months and up will need about 30 ounces of baby formula a day. The CDC estimates they will need infant formula, or solid foods, about five to six times in 24 hours. As the baby starts eating more solid foods, the CDC noted, the amount of formula they will need will likely decrease.

12 to 24 months

At this stage, parents can make the switch from baby formula to plain whole cow’s milk or a fortified unsweetened soy beverage. The CDC says to start doing this gradually, such as by replacing one formula feeding at a time with cow’s milk to aid the child’s transition.

Babies under a year old can’t have regular milk. According to MedlinePlus, it is hard for babies to digest protein and fat in cow’s milk, and it doesn’t provide enough of certain nutrients.

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