The Soy Baby Formula Adventure

We’re on week three of soy baby formula, or, depending on how you count, week one of the second time we’re trying soy baby formula. On the one hand, the baby hates it; on the other, it seems to have ended the morning congestion and sniffles.

Why We Started Soy Baby Formula

A big cold had come and gone, but the congestion hadn’t passed. My son would still wake up in the morning with the sniffles, and just getting better and beating that bug didn’t seem to make it better. Now, it’s hay fever season here, but babies don’t get hay fever, so there had to be something else going on. The doctor suggested a mild milk allergy might be the cause, and further suggested we try soy formula.

Soy’s the trendy thing, of course; people say all sorts of nice (or awful!) things about it. But we’re not much for trends. On the other hand, I’m allergic to dairy, and so was one of my grandfathers. So soy baby formula looked like it might be worth a try.

My excitement didn’t last long. I read the ingredients and discovered that major brands just substituted corn syrup solids for whey. And I’m allergic to corn too. Further searching revealed no alternatives directed towards infants that were corn syrup-free.

While the sniffles went away, it was easy to rationalize that as just my son getting even healthier than before. And we never got to 100% soy baby formula — he hated the taste, so we mixed it 3:1 with dairy baby formula.

What We’re Doing with Soy Baby Formula Now

It was my son’s hate for the soy baby formula that got us to try back on dairy. He’d loved the dairy formula — he’d suck it down, and he’d also grown like a champ. And jettisoning all of that corn syrup solids just seemed like a nice bonus. So, after a couple of weeks, we went back to dairy.

Unfortunately, his sniffles came right back.

So now we’re returning to soy. We’d been on the Enfamil ProSobee but will try the Similac Soy Isomil instead; he does slightly prefer the Similac dairy over the Enfamil, so maybe they just have his flavor profile down a little more.

And we’ll be watching to see if his sniffles go away as we get back to the 3:1 dilution. One time, it could just be a cold clearing up; twice, it’s probably the soy.

Soy Baby Formula and Kaizen

This isn’t specifically about soy baby formula; this is about the amount of time I spend stressing about whether or not I’m giving the best to my son. I have a feeling that I’ll have this experience a lot as a father.

Kaizen talks about muda, about waste. Worry is a waste; it adds no value to the end product. My son will be no more smart, or strong, or healthy because I worry. If I’m parenting in a way that causes me worry, I should either accept it or change it.

I would have an easier time accepting corn syrup solids if he enjoyed his bottles.

This is my biggest muda now: muda of worry. I should stop worrying, because I chose this state. Worry is a waste now.

Wade Armstrong

Hi! I'm a dad in Los Angeles, CA. I work in tech, where I learned about lean & agile methods — thus the "Kaizen" part of the Kaizendad name. My hobbies include cooking and photography.

Los Angeles, CA