Your baby’s diet now will have a lot to do with how healthy they are later. Poor diet while they’re young, can lead to complications later. Unfortunately, a lot of formula companies skimp on good ingredients and add filler, so your baby doesn’t get the nutrition they need.
HiPP, on the other hand, offers essential nutrients that give your baby a safe and healthy meal, no matter which variety you use. The company follows high-quality standards and they have a wide selection of formulas that fit many different nutritional needs.
Health-conscious mothers love HiPP, but it can be tricky to know which variety to choose or why HiPP might be better than the competitor. In this Hipp Stages Explained article, we’ll look at a brief history of the company, ingredients, and varieties, so you’ll know which to choose
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Joseph Hipp founded the company in 1899. He was devoted to his family, so when his wife Maria had a lot of trouble breastfeeding, he used his knowledge as a professional baker to formulate an alternative. He used crushed rusk and milk to make the first baby formula so his twins could eat, and the invention laid the groundwork for a successful family company, even more than 100 years later.
By 1970, this rusk flour infant formula was only available on the German market. Descendant Georg Hipp began a manufacturing process to increase production and market the brand in other countries. HiPP began to sell products like juice, fruit pops, meat, and other food.
Georg began to source products from local organic farms only. The fruit and vegetables he used in his food were from natural soils without any chemicals. Today, this remains the company’s goal—sourcing ingredients from local organic farms for only the best nutrition.
HiPP Formula Overview
With so many organic options on the market, it can be tough for some to decide why to use HiPP. There are three very simple but important reasons why HiPP is one of the best options for your baby.
The EU organic certification ensures that HiPP formulas have only the best ingredients and meet very high-quality standards. An EU organic certification checks off more boxes and follows more safety guidelines than any other American formula.
By law, these formulas have to meet very strict criteria, making them much healthier for children. They don’t have any chemicals, sweeteners, hormones, or heavy metals added, but they’re still rich in antioxidants and lutein.
To be EU certified organic, it requires:
- No added hormones
- No GMOs
- Made with a minimum of 95% organic ingredients
- Cows and goats have a 100% organic diet with no synthetics
- Antibiotics are only used to keep animals healthy
American formulas use cheap fillers and questionable ingredients. They don’t have to follow guidelines this strict, so they get away with a lot. It’s not worth jeopardizing your infant’s health. European formulas like HiPP are much healthier.
In addition to being certified organic, HiPP formulas use only the best quality ingredients. Many busy and tired moms don’t bother to look at the label on the products they buy, so knowing that you’re getting the best without having to look is very important.
HiPP formulas are made with sustainably sourced ingredients and include a wide variety of vitamins that your little one needs. They help to support gone density, extra immunity, and development at all stages. Their quality assurance practices are thorough, helping them maintain these high-quality standards. They don’t include hormones, steroids, chemicals, pesticides, GMOs, synthetic vitamins, or other fillers.
Combining the organic certification and the high-quality standards with a wide variety of options is what makes HiPP so great. No matter what your baby’s special dietary needs are, you’ll find a formula that will work for you while maintaining the standards you trust.
Every baby is different, so HiPP produces these varieties with specific purposes in mind. They understand the complex needs of babies at all growth stages and with a wide range of sensitivities.
You can use HiPP to support your baby through every stage of development, even if they’re sensitive to lactose or they have a problem with spit-up. Varieties include hypoallergenic formulas, anti-reflux, and goodnight, just to name a few.
Every HiPP formula variety has the same basic ingredients to support growth and development. These ingredients provide a variety of benefits, thanks to macros, prebiotics, and other necessary elements for your baby.
Every HiPP baby formula is lactose-based, with the exception of the anti-reflux variety, which uses maltodextrin instead. This helps support babies with sensitive stomachs while still getting them all of the carbohydrates they need.
These healthy carbs are essential for giving your baby’s growing body the energy it needs to stay healthy. They can fight off disease while encouraging healthy bodily functions. For other children, it gives them the energy they need to play.
Lactose is the primary source of carbohydrates in breastmilk, and it’s one of the healthiest, naturally-occurring things you can give your baby. It helps to maintain healthy gut bacteria, which will aid in digestion and the absorption of essential nutrients, while also supporting mental health.
The European Commission requires at least 30% of the carbs in infant formula to come from lactose. The United States has no standard for lactose because they’re more interested in making money rather than being healthy. HiPP combines the current European regulations with their high-quality standards to make the best, most well-rounded formula they can.
Protein is an essential macro for infants because it helps the brain, muscles, and other body tissue to grow. The first twelve months of life are a critical growth period, requiring the appropriate amount of protein for support. HiPP helps parents nourish their babies by using protein sources that mimic breast milk, which can be tricky. Milk from cows contains 80% casein and 20% whey, while breast milk contains a 40/60 ratio.
Because casein can be different for an infant’s stomach to digest, breast milk naturally has less of it. However, HiPP formulates their recipe to mimic the balance found in breast milk, making it easier for even sensitive stomachs to handle.
Their protein source contains a ratio closer to that of breast milk and is designed to be healthier for infants and easier to digest. It is designed with sensitive infant stomachs in mind and comes blended with 100% whey.
European organic standards are much more strict than in the United States. HiPP follows a sustainable protocol to source their milk from only organic, grass-fed cows. These cows are treated humanely, allowed to roam free, and produce some of the healthiest, best-tasting milk in the world.
All HiPP formulas are certified organic and use this protein source, with the exception of anti-reflux, comfort, and hypoallergenic varieties. Due to the sensitivity of infants needing these formulas, protein hydrolysates must be used in these varieties, and they require more processing.
Healthy fats are good for you, and I’m sure you’ve heard this argument when evaluating how much fish and Omega-3s you should eat. However, saturated fat and trans fat aren’t good at all. While healthy fats support growth and heart health, unhealthy fats can lead to diabetes and heart disease.
To encourage infant heart health and set them up for lifelong circulatory system health, HiPP uses Omega-3 (ALA and DHA) and Omega-6 (ARA) fatty acids. These offer a healthy fat source for infants and support other things like nerve function, brain health, vision, muscle development, and the immune system.
You may be familiar with the term DHA from the prenatal vitamins you took while you were pregnant. DHA and ARA fatty acids are important for development but are not required ingredients in US formulas.
In 2020, Europe began requiring these ingredients, and HiPP jumped on the bandwagon with enthusiasm. Their formulas are loaded with Omega-3s and Omega-6s, and the brand is unique because they derive these fatty acids from fish oil and vegetable oil.
Prebiotics and probiotics
All healthy formulas should contain these ingredients. Prebiotics come from plant fiber and support healthy gut bacteria. They aid digestion and the immune system, which is great for all babies, but especially those with digestive issues.
Probiotics are live bacteria often found in soy and dairy products. They also help aid digestion and the immune system, but they train the body to adapt to more complex foods, which prepares them for solid food when they’re ready.
All HiPP varieties contain prebiotics, but there are a few varieties that contain both prebiotics and probiotics. The anti-reflux formula, Dutch formula stages 1 and 2, and all hypoallergenic formulas contain both to support babies with more sensitive issues.
HiPP Formula Varieties
All varieties contain the basic ingredients listed above, and exceptions are noted when it comes to how these ingredients are sourced. However, HiPP’s variety is one of the things that makes the brand so attractive to parents of infants. There’s something for every age and sensitivity.
The stages range from newborn to toddler, so you can support healthy nutrition for your little one throughout the first few years of life.
AR stands for anti-reflux, and this formula is one of the best options if your infant struggles with GERD, acid reflux, or any other digestive issue that causes excessive spit-up and pain. It’s formulated for infants starting at the newborn stage and is an excellent option to try when nothing else seems to relieve the discomfort.
What makes this variety different is that it’s made with organic locust bean gum, which gives it a creamier consistency and makes it easier for babies with acid reflux or excessive spit-up to keep down. The creamy texture can also help coat their stomach and esophagus, giving them some much-needed relief from the burning they may feel when spitting up.
For infants who seem to struggle with digestive discomfort, but who don’t have a problem with acid reflux or spitting up, the comfort formula may be easier on their stomach and support the healthy digestion they struggle with on their own.
This formula is safe for infants as young as newborns and contains prebiotics and probiotics that promote healthy digestion. It also has a reduced lactose content and uses hydrolyzed milk, rather than cow’s milk, as the protein source.
HiPP’s Dutch formula is for infants 0-6 months and contains both prebiotics and probiotics to aid in healthy digestion. It also uses skimmed milk and eliminates maltodextrin. It’s a lighter alternative that doesn’t contain as much sweetness as other HiPP varieties. It’s also not as thick or creamy.
Maltodextrin aids in the slow release of energy, which makes your baby feel full and keeps them satisfied for longer. Some parents prefer to eliminate this ingredient to keep the formula more natural. Your baby will be hungry again sooner, but that’s normal for very small infants with high metabolisms.
German Combiotik formula
This formula variety contains both prebiotics and probiotics to aid in digestion, but it also includes DHA and ARA as well as starch. This formula is available in Germany and is made to help babies feel fuller. It contains the nutrients your child needs to support healthy growth.
This hypoallergenic formula is perfect for babies who have an allergy to milk ingredients. It uses prebiotics and probiotics to aid in digestion, which can be a struggle for babies with allergies.
It also uses hydrolyzed milk proteins with increased processing to ensure your baby has fewer allergic reactions than they would with normal formula. It’s safe for infants 0-6 months, at which point you can increase your stage or switch back to regular formula.
This basic HiPP formula is the standard variety, intended to combine affordability with quality. It contains prebiotics, DHA, and ARA. It comes in 3 stages so you can begin as a newborn and continue throughout infancy.
This HiPP formula is made with rice and buckwheat cereals. It’s intended to help your baby sleep through the night with a fuller tummy. Goodnight formula is a great alternative to formulas with maltodextrin to keep babies full for longer and is only intended for use at night.
Things HiPP Doesn’t Use
It’s nice to see what HiPP uses, but you may take just as much comfort in knowing what they don’t include in their formulas.
While the benefits of gluten in infants are inconclusive, many infants can’t process gluten yet and won’t digest it properly. Rather than risking your baby’s health, HiPP leaves it out. All HiPP formulas are 100% gluten-free, making them allergy-friendly.
Sugars are very bad for babies, but many cheaper infant formula brands will add a lot of sugar to help babies feel full for longer. It tricks their digestive system into thinking they’re full when they truly need more nutrients to keep them healthy.
HiPP never adds extra sugar to their formula. Most formulas contain natural forms of sugar in carbohydrates and proteins, so extra sugar is not needed. These naturally occurring sugars are much healthier for your baby.
Most varieties of HiPP formula contain no maltodextrin. It’s a lot like sugar and should be avoided if possible. It’s a harmful filler that can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and other complications.
Soy is also avoided in most HiPP varieties because it’s a cheap, processed alternative to dairy that it’s as safe for babies. Rather than use soy as a hypoallergenic ingredient, they use hydrolyzed milk with extra processing techniques to ensure the avoidance of allergic reactions.
Rather than being a healthy alternative to milk, soy can actually contain GMOs and chemicals. Many producers also hydrogenate it to make it last longer, which can alter the chemical structure of soy and turn it into trans fat.
GMOs are genetically modified ingredients. They’re unnatural and dangerous for babies, as well as adults. These unnatural chemicals have been linked to many diseases. These chemicals can help your child grow bigger, faster. It sounds good in theory, but can lead to more complications later.
Wheat and peanut
These two common allergies are not included in HiPP formulas. HiPP formulas are intended to nourish infants rather than encourage them to consume potentially harmful ingredients. There’s no wheat or peanuts in any of HiPP’s formulas, so they are the perfect organic companion to your baby’s diet.
There are absolutely no synthetic preservatives or nutrients in HiPP formulas. They don’t use unnatural fillers and only use naturally occurring ingredients that are safe and healthy for your baby.
Answer: HiPP formulas are designed to aid your baby’s growth and development at every stage. Most of the HiPP varieties we already covered have several stages, so you can continue to give your baby what they need when they need it.
The primary difference between stages 1 and 2 is that as your baby grows, their calcium and iron requirements change. Stage 2 is better suited for older babies because it contains more of what they need.
Answer: It can get confusing because not only are there a lot of varieties of HiPP formula, but there are also several different stages within each variety. However, the stages refer to your child’s age, while the variety will be formulated to suit your baby’s unique dietary needs.
Pre stages are intended for 0-3 months, Stage 1 is for 0-12 months, Stage 2 is for 6+ months, Stage 3 is for 10+ months, and Kindermilch is for 12+ months. After choosing the variety of HiPP formula your baby needs, be sure to select the correct stage based on your child’s age. These formulas will contain ingredients to accommodate increased iron and calcium needs.
Answer: HiPP is pricier than Enfamil, and it often takes longer to prepare, but it’s certified organic using higher standards than formulas in the United States. Ingredients are thoughtfully and sustainably sourced, and it contains many more nutrients than Enfamil.
Answer: When it comes to European formulas, these are the two most popular. While HiPP beats Holle in terms of sensitivity, tolerability, nutritional profile, and price, Holle is better when it comes to ingredient sourcing, sustainability, and simplicity.
However, both of these options are better than American formula brands, so you’re much better off no matter which one you choose.
Hipp Stages Explained: Final Thoughts
HiPP is a great choice for parents who care about organic formulas with high-quality ingredients. HiPP contains everything a baby needs in its first years of life. It supports digestion, growth, and overall health. There’s a ton of variety here, so it suits special dietary needs well and offers a lot of options that you can try if one of the others doesn’t work out. It’s clean and wholesome, making it the best option for most people.