I’ve been doing a monthly post on Promil® Four sharing with you all everything I’ve learned this year as I try my hardest to be the best I can be as I nourish my kids to nurture their gift.
This year I am thankful for my children’s health. Both of my kids have grown so much this year–physically, emotionally & mentally. Both of them rarely got sick this year and thinking about what contributed, all I can think of is me being more mindful when it comes to nourishing and nurturing.
One of the factors that contribute to my kids’ overall health & wellness is I just simply follow the same principle I’ve been doing to myself the past years—being more conscious on what I eat, being active, & allowing myself to have treats but only in moderation. Also I’ve learned to mindfully read the label on what food I serve my kids. Since I discovered recently that I have PCOS, I’ve been more discerning when it comes to my sugar intake so I’ve applied this discipline to my kids as well.
Understanding the nutritional values, knowing the ingredients, calorie counts and even the sugar content of your child’s milk plays a huge role in providing the right nutrtion. Getting accustomed to read the labels is something we parents should do.
According to Food Scientist Dr. Lotis Francisco, milk labels provide the necessary information that would allow you to check and balance the ingredients and other nutritional facts of the milk.
Here’s some guidelines to help you decode the label of your child’s milk.
What’s on milk labels?
Dr. Francisco said that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires labels on all prepackaged food, like milk. These labels must provide a complete list of ingredients, as well as its nutrition information in readable type. Usually, these are located at the back or side of thepackaging under the “Ingredients” and “Nutrition Facts” headings.
When reading the Ingredients label, you must take note that the items listed are in descending order of proportion: from most to least. This means that the first ingredient in the list is also the main component of the milk.
For instance, some formula milk, like PROMIL® Four, have non-fat milk as their first listed ingredient, and thus is their first component. Dr. Francisco noted that this component is preferred for children over 3 years old since it eliminated unnecessary fatty acids and kept the other milk components like lactose.
Other milk brands, meanwhile, use other key ingredients like hydrolyzed cornstarch that servesas an agent to retain milk’s sensory properties, and functions as a source of carbohydrates withalso its sucrose content. With these ingredients, your child’s milk would look and feel like that ofa regular one when consumed, and is much sweeter than the recommended.
How do you read the Nutritional Facts?
The Nutritional Facts label, on the other hand, appears in a tabulated form that declares the protein, carbohydrates (including dietary fibers and sugars), fats (including saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol), sodium, as well as the caloric content of the milk. Added Vitamin A, Iron, and Iodine, as well as other vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids are also included in the tabulation.
“All of these nutrients are expressed through the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intake (RENI) of children, based on the guidelines of the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI),”explained Dr. Francisco. “So, if the Protein Content in the milk indicates 30 percent, then, your child needs 70 percent more from other food sources to meet his or her daily RENI.
How do you know the sugar content?
When it comes to formula milk’s sugar levels, most parents may find it confusing, especially that the Nutritional Facts label only indicates an aggregated sugar content. That is why high sugar levels do not necessarily imply poor quality.
Among the types of sugar added in formula milk include sucrose, also referred to as table sugar and starches. These are added to replace some or all of the lactose naturally found in milk. Given the case, Dr. Francisco noted that it is still better to check the type of sugar used in your child’smilk. For your child’s proper growth and mental development, PROMIL® Four is predominantlylactose with its non-fat milk as the main ingredient.So glad my children’s milk has non-fat milk as their main ingredient.
What other nutrients should you look out for?
To ensure that your child gets the essential and important nutrients for proper growth and mentaldevelopment, it pays off to check if milk’s macronutrients—protein, fat, and carbohydrates—are at the right level for children over 3 years old.
Based on FNRI’s Philippine Dietary Reference Intakes, your child’s milk per serving should have Protein within 6-15% of total energy, Fat within 15-30% of total energy, and Carbohydrates within 55-79% of total energy to be within the acceptable macronutrient distribution range (AMDR).
Below recommended range may stunt child’s growth and drain energy, while above may cause the risk of obesity. To support proper growth and mental development, it is preferred for these nutrients to be within range. For PROMIL® FOUR, it gives 15% total energy from its protein content, 30% total energy from fats, and 55% total energy from carbohydrates.
PROMIL® FOUR is also the only formula milk with NUTRISSENTIALS®. It contains DHA, AA, Lutein, Iodine, and Iron to help support brain and visual development. It also has Vitamin A, which supports healthy eye development; Zinc for normal growth and maintaining a healthy immune system; Niacin, which aids in metabolism; Biotin, which enhances energy for physical development; and Potassium, which promotes healthy muscles.So glad my kids are on the right track when it comes to nutrition. This coming 2019, I wish continuous growth & good health for me and my family. So thankful that brands such as PROMIL® FOUR has helped parents like me nurture the gift through proper care, parenting, and nutrition.
Learn more about PROMIL® Four, visit their website at www.promilnurturethegift.com.ph.