After the release of her new book, Balancing in Heels, Kristin Cavallari has been promoting content across the Internet and on TV. Recently, an article doing just that on People magagine was taken down due to concerns over a goat's milk formula recipe Cavallari shared from her book.
In the article, Cavallari, the wife of Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears quarterback, explained that she had some concerns about giving processed formula to her children but needed an option for feeding her babies when her freezer stash of breast milk ran out. She named glucose syrup solids, an ingredient found in most formulas, as one of her largest concerns. This caused her and her husband to turn to their pediatrician and work to develop an alternative formula made from goat’s milk, cod liver oil and a few other organic ingredients.
After sharing her homemade formula recipe with their readers, People received criticism based on research that suggests that goat’s milk is dangerous for infants. The consequences of introducing goat’s milk to a child under 1 can range from mild to severe, with some children experiencing life-threatening reactions to the raw milk.
This goes to show just how important it is to consult with your pediatrician before introducing any alternative treatments or feeding methods to your child. In a world where so many moms are spending significant time online and seeking out advice on parenting from the online community, it is crucial that moms understand that taking advice from someone who is not a medical professional can have dangerous consequences for their children.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that, because something worked for me, it will work fine for all babies. But scientific evidence is much more reliable, and parents need to research all the possible outcomes and risks associated with feeding their own child certain foods, introducing certain medicines or going against a recommended course of treatment. Just because one doctor says something is OK for her baby doesn't mean it's OK for your baby, too. As great as it is to be able to seek out community and support from a Facebook group or a celebrity's blog, these are not reliable sources for medical advice.
Also, while many assume that natural is always better, it is important to remember that things occurring naturally can still be dangerous or poisonous. That is why it is so important to rely on sound medical evidence and involve your pediatrician before you move forward with any suggestions from the online world, including alternative vaccination schedules, use of essential oils or introducing homemade formula to your infant.
If you have concerns about the advice you are being given by your child’s doctor, don’t turn to the online world for help. Instead, seek out another professional opinion, even changing pediatricians if necessary. While anecdotal evidence may seem convincing at face value, following the advice of anyone without professional credentials can put your child’s life at risk.
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