Below are answers to frequently asked questions about Neocate. If you have any concerns about your baby you should contact your healthcare professional for advice.
- My baby is currently breast-fed, how do I introduce Neocate?
Breast milk is the best choice for babies as it contains all the nutrition required for growth and development. However, sometimes it is not possible for babies with cows’ milk allergy to exclusively feed directly from the breast and a specialised infant formula such as Neocate may be recommended by a healthcare processional. Some mums choose to combine breast feeding with formula feeding (mixed feeding) and some mums will (for whatever reason) switch to an infant formula completely.
Whatever you choose, it may be helpful to:
- Check with your doctor or dietitian if Neocate will be used in addition to, or to replace breastmilk. If your baby is also taking solid foods, perhaps only give solid foods after the formula has been taken. Please also check with your doctor or dietitian regarding your supply of breastmilk.
- Give the Neocate together with the breastmilk. Ask your doctor and/or dietitian if this is suitable. Nursing mothers or a lactation consultant will be able to give advice on using a mixture of breast milk with Neocate.
- Try using a cup to feed your baby Neocate at around 6 months of age. Discuss with your dietitian a suitable type of feeding cup e.g. sippy cup.
2. My child’s appetite has increased since starting Neocate, is this normal?
Your child’s appetite may be reduced when they are generally not feeling well and/or they are experiencing inflammation and/or irritation to their tummy because of their condition. When a child uses Neocate and symptoms start to improve, overall this can help to alleviate any tummy discomfort and distress caused by the condition, which subsequently your child’s mood and health should also improve as they start to feel better, and then you may eventually see their appetite improve dramatically.
Also, as children grow and develop, their energy and nutrient requirements increase, which means you can expect to see their appetite increase during this time, which usually means their formula and solid food intake will also increase.
3. My child’s bowel movements have changed since starting Neocate, is this normal?
Yes this is perfectly normal. Stools can change in consistency and colour when a child is introduced to an elemental formula such as Neocate. The reason for this is that Neocate is a very simple form of nutrition. It tends to get absorbed by the body high up in the gut meaning that very little of its nutrients pass into the lower gut. The large intestine is home to millions of bacteria that perform a number of functions including the breakdown of bile (a green substance) which your body naturally produces. These bacteria get less nutrition while your child is on Neocate and their numbers fall, so reducing the breakdown of bile. This means that more bile is present in your child’s stools giving them a green colour. This process is a natural effect of taking Neocate and does not affect your baby.
4. Will Neocate formula meet all my baby’s nutritional needs?
The Neocate infant range is formulated to meet the daily nutritional requirements of an infant (0 to 12 months of age). If you are concerned that your baby is not gaining weight or growing adequately, please consult your healthcare professional. They will be able to assess if your baby’s nutritional needs are being met and if dietary adjustments are necessary.
5. When will I see an improvement after starting Neocate?
If your child has been experiencing negative symptoms for some time, his or her condition may take time to improve. Severe allergies can cause inflammation and irritation to the affected areas. This, like a cut or burn, will take time to heal.
Symptom improvement will depend very much on the severity and type of allergic condition your child is experiencing. Amino acid-based formulae like Neocate are supported by studies which have shown symptom resolution (vomiting and/or diarrhoea) or symptom improvement (eczema) within 3 to 14 days.1,2 If symptoms persist or you have any concerns regarding the symptoms your child is experiencing, it is best to consult your healthcare professional.
It is important to follow your healthcare professional’s advice; do not stop using Neocate once you see an improvement or resolution of symptoms. Discuss your child’s feeding plan with your healthcare professional.
To learn more about the First 14 days support program head to this page.
6. What makes Neocate different from other formulas?
Neocate is elemental formula, which means that the ingredients in Neocate are in their simplest and purest form so they are easier for the body to process and digest. Neocate is based on 100% free amino acids. These are the building blocks of protein and, unlike formed whole proteins, do not cause allergic inflammation and are considered to be hypoallergenic. Other formulas are composed of whole proteins or whole protein fragments (hydrolysates) which are derived from cow’s milk or soy. These have the potential to cause allergic inflammation. For more information head to this page.
7. What is Neocate?
Neocate is a range of hypoallergenic, powdered formula consisting of 100% free amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. Neocate is for the dietary management of cows’ milk allergy and other allergic conditions such as multiple food protein allergies. Neocate is designed to meet the nutritional requirements needed to support growth and development in infants and children. For more information head to this page.
8. What is the difference between Neocate Gold and Neocate LCP?
Neocate Gold and Neocate LCP are special formulas designed for babies from birth to 12 months with cow’s milk protein allergy and multiple food protein intolerance. They can be used as a sole source of food and provide the necessary nutrients required for a baby’s growth and development, provided they are taken in adequate amounts. Neocate Gold has a larger percentage of Medium Chain Triglycerides or MCT (a type of fat) as compared to Neocate LCP, which assists with better fat absorption and digestion in babies. Ultimately it depends on your doctor’s clinical judgement to decide which formula is best suited for your baby.
As you embark on your allergy journey we are there to provide support, answers and inspiration
- Hill DJ et al. J Pediatr 1999; 135:118-121.
- Vanderhoof JA et al. 1997; 131:741-744.