Pros: Iron-fortified; easy to digest; cost effective when compared to other starter formulas.
Cons: No formula can duplicate the many beneficial ingredients found only in breastmilk.
Of course, breastmilk is almost always the best nutritional choice when it comes to choosing feeding methods for your new baby. The perfect balance of fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and immune-system-building protective antibodies found within has never been duplicated, although formula companies DO try. But as an occasional supplement to breastfeeding, or if breastfeeding is discontinued or not chosen for whatever reason, there ARE adequate iron-fortified infant formulas on the market that provide the necessary nutrients babies need for proper growth and development. Of the numerous "starter formulas" parents might consider discussing with their newborn's pediatrician, such as Similac with Iron and Enfamil with Iron, Nestle Carnation Good Start is an equally nutritious, generally well-tolerated yet cost-effective alternate choice.
My now 13 month old son, Tristan, was almost exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of his life. Once solids were introduced into his diet, I began supplementing breastfeedings occasionally with iron-fortified infant formulas until he finally "self-weaned" at age 9 months. At that time, iron-fortified formula provided a large portion of his daily caloric requirements, along with other age-appropriate solid foods. Of the many types and brands we tried both as a supplement to breastfeeding and then as his main dietary food source with successful results was Nestle Carnation Good Start infant formula. I had registered online at their website during my pregnancy and had received numerous checks for $7 off their 12 ounce canisters of powdered formula (an equivalent to a free can as most stores sell this product for around $7 each or even a bit less).
So while I was still breastfeeding, I'd pick up a canister of powdered Nestle Carnation Good Start with these free checks every time I went grocery shopping, paying close attention to the expiration dates printed on the bottom of the cans so that I could save them for later use. I did this with other brands and types of formula as well, so by the time I needed my "formula stash", I'd created a stockpile that would last for several months at a very lost cost. But even though Tristan switched easily from one brand to the other with no problems, always check with your pediatrician before engaging in the unconventional practice with YOUR own baby.
Nestle has been manufacturing infant formulas since 1867, so they've certainly had many years of experience in this area. Designed as a milk based "starter formula" for babies 0 to 12 months, Nestle Carnation Good Start is the ONLY infant formula that contains 100% whey protein, which is the primary type also found in breastmilk. These Comfort Proteins are broken down into smaller pieces, making them easier to digest in an infant's immature digestive system. Because of this, Nestle believes that Carnation Good Start is an ideal choice to help bring out the very best in your baby when breastfeeding is not chosen, is discontinued, or a supplement is desired. Nestle states on the can and in their advertising that they believe breastmilk is best. Of course this statement could be highly debated as they would surely go out of business if the majority of consumers believed this, as well, so take this as you will.
NUTRIENTS per 100 calories (5 ounces, prepared as directed)
Enzymatically reduced mineral whey protein concentrate (from cow's milk), vegetable oils (palm olein, soy, coconut, high-oleic safflower), lactose, corn maltodextrin, soy lechithin, minerals (calcium chloride, calcium phosphate, magnesium chloride, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, manganese sulfate), vitamins (sodium ascorbate, inositol, choline bitartrate, alpha-tocopheryl acetate, niacinamide, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, vitamin A acetate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, folic acid, phylloquinone, biotin, vitamin D3, vitamin B12), taurine, nucleotides** (cytidine 5'-monophosphate, disodium uridine 5'-monophosphate, adenosine 5'-monophosphate, disodium guanosine 5'-monophosphate), L-carnitine.
**Naturally found in breastmilk**
DIRECTIONS FOR PREPARATION & USE
Proper dilution of infant formula is critical for your baby's good health and nutritional needs. Use boiled, bottled, or regular tap water (discuss which is best with your baby's pediatrician) and pour the desired amount into clean and/or sterilized bottles. Add one unpacked level scoop (included) of powdered Nestle Carnation Good Start for each 2 ounces of water inside the bottle. Shake or stir this formula mixture well. Test the temperature (use a microwave cautiously, if at all), feed immediately, or cover and refrigerate prepared bottled formula and use within 24 hours. Discard any unconsumed formula left in the bottle after each feeding, as your baby's saliva with contaminate any remaining formula with bacteria, making it potentially harmful if consumed at a later time. Cover opened can and store in a cool dry place, using contents within 1 month after opening. Avoid prolonged storage of Nestle Carnation Good Start at excessive temperatures, and use before the expiration date printed on the bottom of the can. Each 12 ounce powdered can yields approximately 87.2 ounces of prepared formula when properly diluted as directed, or almost 11 eight-ounce servings.
While powdered formula is generally the most economical and usually ideal for breastfeeding mothers who occasionally supplement as only one bottle can be prepared at a time with little waste, Nestle Carnation Good Start may also be purchased in liquid form, either in "ready-to-feed" 32 ounce cans (no added water required) or in "concentrated" 13 ounce sizes, requiring some mixing before serving. The "ready-to-feed" variety is the most convenient as no mixing is required, but it's generally the most expensive. I personally never purchased this type. The smaller "concentrated" cans of infant formula are less expensive, but they must be mixed with a 1:1 ratio of water for proper dilution. So each 13 ounce can of Nestle Carnation Good Start (about $1.98 each) will yield 26 ounces of properly prepared formula for your baby. If you are ever unsure as to proper dilution guidelines, call your baby's pediatrician for further instructions. Your baby's health depends on it!
Because Nestle Carnation Good Start is a routine, milk-based "starter formula", do not use if you suspect your baby is allergic to cow's milk proteins. Other special types of formula (such as soy based and others) may be recommended by your baby's pediatrician as a replacement if this is the case. ALWAYS feed your baby infant formula fortified with IRON unless otherwise directed by your baby's doctor as iron-deficiency anemia can easily occur when too little iron is absorbed into your baby's digestive system. Most full-term infants are born with enough iron-stores to last the first 6 months or so, but depleted iron levels must be replaced through a baby's diet. Contrary to popular belief, infant formulas containing IRON do NOT cause constipation. Low-iron formulas should be used cautiously, if at all.
JUST WHAT IS A "STARTER FORMULA" ANYWAY?"
STARTER FORMULAS are routine milk-based formulas, such as Nestle Carnation Good Start, designed for babies 0 to 12 months of age. The majority of formula fed babies thrive on these with little or no complications. However, when allergies and other digestive complications occasionally occur, babies are often switched from these types of formula to other special ones specifically designed for such feeding problems. Once a baby reaches at least 4 months of age and is also consuming iron-fortified solid foods such as rice cereals, these "starter formulas" can be replaced by "follow-up" formulas containing more calcium for growing bones, if desired. Such a choice to consider if and when the time comes is Nestle Carnation Follow-Up Formula.
As you discuss feeding options for your new baby with his or her pediatrician, consider choosing Nestle Carnation Good Start as a nutritious, easy-to-digest yet cost effective milk-based alternative to other similar "starter formulas" on the market today, such as Similac with Iron and Enfamil with Iron, which can cost up to 20% more. ALL infant formulas marketed in the US must meet the same guidelines set forth by the FDA (Federal Drug Administration), so the more expensive brands aren't necessarily any better than lower costing yet equally nutritious alternatives, such as this one. So when breastfeeding isn't chosen, is discontinued, or supplemented for whatever reason, rest assured that Nestle Carnation Good Start, the only infant formula containing easy to digest Comfort Proteins, will provide your baby with all the adequate nutrients needed for proper growth and development during his or her first year of life. I trusted this brand with my precious little one. Maybe you should too!
For more information on Nestle Carnation Good Start as well as other types of infant formula by this same company, check out their website online at:
While you are there, register for a free monthly newsletter full of helpful information, as well as valuable money-saving checks, geared towards the specific age of your baby to be delivered to your mailbox. Also, check out their "growth tracker" and plot your baby's height and weight there to see how he or she measures up on standardized growth charts. They also have a "immunization tracker" that lists which immunizations are given at specific ages that may be helpful to new parents as well.
Questions or comments?
NESTLE USA, INC.
Glendale, CA 91203
UPDATE: January 2004
Nestle now offers their Supreme lines of infant formula, which contain the new DHA and ARA fatty acids (to support brain and eye development) once only available in breastmilk.
Copy and paste the following URL into your computer's web browser for more information: