Hypoallergenic formula is recommended for babies with cow’s milk or dairy allergies after a positive test by an allergist or immunologist. The hydrolyzed formula doesn’t elicit any allergy response, because the protein is broken into small pieces so the immune system can’t recognize it. Therefore, this will apply changes in baby poop in terms of color, consistency, frequency, and smell.
In this article I will talk about what’s the normal hypoallergenic formula poop, also the warning signs you should worry about. Furthermore, the relation between baby poop and constipation/diarrhea.
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What Does a Hypoallergenic Formula Poop Looks Like?
Babies who are on a hypoallergenic formula have a yellow, green to dark green formula, a loose and sometimes a chunky peanut butter consistency, more frequent poops with some brands, and once to twice a day with other brands, all that with a stinky horrible smell.
The poop structure varies by the brand you are using. This table shows the poop color, consistency, frequency, and smell for each hypoallergenic formula brand.
|Poop Color||Poop Consistency||Poop Frequency||Poop Smell|
|Similac Alimentum||green to brown||loose and watery||once to twice a day||horrible|
|Enfamil Nutramigen||yellow/beige||like peanut butter||after every feeding,|
after 2 weeks 1 to 2 day
|Gerber Extensive HA||green to dark green||loose||once to twice a day||horrible|
|Target Brand HA||green||very wet||after every feeding,|
after 2 weeks 1 to 2 day
|Walmart Brand HA||green||pudding like||once to twice a day||horrible|
|Amazon Brand HA||yellow||pudding like||once to twice a day||horrible|
|Kabrita Brand HA||green||pudding like||after every feeding,|
after 2 weeks 1 to 2 day
Hypoallergenic Baby Formula Poop Color and Consistency :
Hypoallergenic formula poop color is often yellow to dark green, a runny watery stool, sometimes more firm like peanut butter. The iron is responsible for the green color. Furthermore, the consistency is caused by the existence or non of palm oil in the formula.
- Similac Alimentum Poop:
Babies on Similac Alimentum have usually a green to brown poop, muddy sticky, sometimes a little looser, and more watery though.
The looseness of stools is due to the non-existence of palm oil in Similac Alimentum and the use of medium-chain triglycerides as a fat blend which makes the stool soft and watery.
- Gerber Extensive HA Poop:
If you’re using Gerber Extensive HA you probably see a green to dark green poop and loose consistency. Like Similac Alimentum; Gerber doesn’t use palm oil that’s why the poop is loose and soft.
Furthermore, the green color is due to iron, and sometimes the dark green color can mean that you’re using an iron supplement.
- Enfamil Nutramigen Poop:
Moms who are feeding with Enfamil Nutramigen are seeing a yellow/beige poop, a chunky peanut butter consistency, it has chunks like curdled milk. Sometimes the poop could be loose.
Enfamil uses palm oil in their hypoallergenic formula, which makes the stool more firm, and sometimes can lead to constipation. However, if your baby is doing great and has no pain during BM, just don’t be concerned about palm oil.
hypoallergenic formulas are more expensive than regular formulas. switching to generic brand formula will be a good choice; I wrote an article about the best 9 generic brands for nutramigen formula (cheap!!) if you want to check
- Generic Hypoallergenic Brands Poop:
Babies on Target brand hypoallergenic have a very wet poop with a green color. The same thing for Walmart brand HA and Kabrita brand HA; green poop and consistency of pudding. However, for Amazon brand HA you will see a yellow color.
All these colors are normal for a formula-fed baby, the wet runny consistency also fine for a hypoallergenic formula where the protein is broken into small pieces which helps the baby digest it fastly and do a runny soft poop.
Just make sure is not diarrhea (i will talk above about signs of diarrhea).
What Are The Baby Poop Colors That Aren’t Normal?
- Black, Red Poop :
After the meconium pass (newborn poop), generally 5 days; if you see a black or red color; then your LO may be bleeding from inside the digestive system, the blood in the stool can be a result of constipation, digestive system problems, or allergy.
Sometimes the blood in stools can be a result of poop frequency; babies who are on hypoallergenic formula poop more in the beginning (almost after every feeding), which can lead to slight anal fissures.
For a baby who drinks a hypoallergenic formula and still has an allergy and poor growth; the amino acid formula is the right option for your LO.
This formula is made from individual amino acids (the building blocks of protein) where the range size of protein is 1 KiloDalton whereas the normal range size is 14 to 67 KiloDalton.
black or red colors are warning signs; you must call your pediatrician.
- White or Gray Poop :
White and gray poop means that the baby isn’t digesting foods well, which is rare for a hypoallergenic formula baby, because the protein is broken into small pieces (a range size of 3 KiloDalton), therefore, the baby can easily digest it.
However, you may see these colors after introducing solid foods, and whenever you see these colors; call your pediatrician.
How Often Should a Hypoallergenic Formula Baby Poop?
Most babies who are on hypoallergenic formulas poop once to twice a day. Sometimes, the poop frequency may be more in the beginning. But, after 1 to 2 weeks the frequency is adjusted to 1 to 2 poops a day.
All hypoallergenic formula babies poop once to twice a day, except for Enfamil Nutramigen, Kabrita brand, and Target brand; the poop frequency is almost after every feeding,
Enfamil Nutramigen has probiotics (good bacteria) that help your LO digest food fastly which mean more frequent bowel movement.
Many moms suffer from poop frequency and bad diaper rash in the beginning. However, it can take from 1 to 2 weeks for the baby to adjust to it, give it some time and you will see better results (generally 1 to 2 poops a day) with no bad diaper rash.
If not, try to switch to Similac Alimentum ready to feed, many moms have seen very good results using it.
The poop frequency is not a concern if the baby is thriving and has no pain during bowel movements. However, not pooping for more than 5 days may be a sign of constipation; then you must consult your pediatrician.
Hypoallergenic Formula Poop Smell :
All formula-fed babies have smelly poop, but hypoallergenic formula poop has a horrible smell and is sometimes weird! the poop smell is related to the bacteria in the intestine, the longer the poop is exposed to bacteria the more the poop has a bad smell.
Babies on hypoallergenic formula poop once to twice a day, which explain the horrible smell. Whereas, breastfed babies have more frequent poops per day that’s why their poops smell sweet.
Warnings signs :
A foul-smelling for several days might be an allergy to something, it’s better to consult your pediatrician.
The Best Hypoallergenic Formula For Baby Poops :
After a lot of research and asking many moms; the best hypoallergenic formula for baby poop is Similac Alimentum (ready to feed), with a green to brown, and soft watery poop, moms are happy with it. The frequency is once to twice a day which is great.
Similac Alimentum doesn’t use palm oil which makes the poop soft.
if you are willing to switch to Similac hypoallergenic brand you can buy it here
You may want to see Nutramigen Vs Alimentum: Which One is Better?
Hypoallergenic Formula and Constipation :
« Constipation in infants and children occurs when they have hard stools or have problems passing stools. A child may have pain while passing stools or may be unable to have a bowel movement after straining or pushing,» says Medlineplus.gov
It’s rare to have constipation on hypoallergenic formula. Most babies have a runny watery stools once to twice a day sometimes more. However, noticing these signs in your baby may be constipation :
- fussiness and spitting up more often
- struggling when passing stools
- Hard, dry poops
- Pain during bowel movement
- Large, big stools
- Blood on the stool
- Doesn’t poop for more than 5 days
You must consult your pediatrician when you see these signs.
The causes vary, some babies may be constipated when switching from breastmilk to formula. While others do when introducing solid foods and not eating enough fiber or drinking enough fluids.
Sometimes the cause could be palm oil which reduces calcium and fat absorption and can lead to constipation (Enfamil Nutramigen uses palm oil). However, if the baby has soft poops and had no pain when passing stools; the palm oil is not a concern.
Hypoallergenic Formula and Diarrhea :
For most babies who are on hypoallergenic formula, runny and watery stool is common. That’s normal because of small pieces of protein (whey or casein) existing in these formulas and the non-exitance of palm oil in some.
A runny watery stool may be similar to diarrhea. However, this is not always the case.
If you notice these signs then it’s diarrhea.
Signs of diarrhea according to seattlechildrens.org :
- Suspect diarrhea if the stools suddenly increase in number or looseness. If it lasts for 3 or more stools, the baby has diarrhea.
- If the stools contain mucus, blood, or smell bad, this points to diarrhea.
- Other clues to diarrhea are poor eating, acting sick, or a fever.
- After 2 months of age, most babies pass 1 or 2 stools per day. They can also pass 1 every other day. They no longer appear to have mild diarrhea.
The principles causes of diarrhea are cow’s milk allergy and lactose intolerance, sometimes even with hypoallergenic formula the baby’s digestive system can detect the small pieces of casein or whey, it’s rare but could happen.
Therefore, the pediatrician will recommend an amino-acid formula where the range size of protein is 1 KiloDalton (a normal range size is 14 to 67).
As you may see, baby poop can tell you a lot about your baby’s health. We talked about the « normal » poop you should see on a hypoallergenic formula. However, every baby is different; each one can have his own « normal » poop. In the end, you are the judge.
As long as the baby hasn’t these warning signs we talked about you shouldn’t be worried. In time, you will get used to your baby poop and know what’s normal and what’s not.
Still have questions or tips on hypoallergenic formula? feel free to ask in the comment.
Baby Poop images Sources: