Lebenswert might not be as well-known or easily accessible as some other brands, but many parents consider it one of the best formulas currently on the market. It’s full of organic ingredients, nutrients, and vitamins, and most babies get used to its mild taste and aroma very quickly.
Are you planning to try it out too? Then, check out our guide to the Lebenswert stage 1, 2, and 3 and choose the most suitable product for you and your baby.
New or expectant parents often believe that all formulas are mostly the same. But they are not! Why is choosing the right brand, type, and stage of formula so important? Consider that these products stand somewhere in between food and medicine. Since each baby can have specific needs, tastes, and health conditions, the very same product might suit one kid perfectly while being completely useless for another.
Before you’re ready to choose the best formula for your baby, you should get a basic grasp of how these formulas work, what they consist of, and whether your baby has any individual requirements. Nevertheless, some brands, including Lebenswert, are pretty compatible with almost any needs and conditions.
Let’s start with a brief review of the brand’s most essential qualities and attributes.
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Why Use Lebenswert Stage 1-3?
Have you ever heard of Lebenswert before? Holle, an internationally recognized German manufacturer, produces this range of formulas, which also produces several other better-known ranges of baby food (including the eponymous Holle formula). The company is part of the BioLand Europe program, which provides certifications to organic food products of the highest quality.
This alone provides quite a good reason for trying Lebenswert products out, but this formula also has other qualities and benefits. Let’s check them out.
Safe and Organic Ingredients
As I’ve already hinted above, Lebenswert formulas are made of natural organic ingredients that are suitable even for the pickiest parents and the most sensitive babies. You can rest assured that your kid will not come across any residues of pesticides or GMO elements in this formula, and it also doesn’t contain any artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, etc.
Buying organic formulas is not just a matter of choice – if your baby suffers from allergies or has weak immunity (this can particularly apply to premature babies and babies with various congenital health conditions), organic formula is also the safest solution as it shouldn’t trigger any serious adverse reactions.
From Newborn to Toddler
Some babies might be quite content with almost any formula you present them with. Others, however, struggle to adapt even to the most delicate and tasteful products. If your baby belongs to the latter group, you’d probably like to stick to the same formula (the one he or she finally tolerates) for as long as possible.
In this regard, Lebenswert is a great choice since it comes with several stages that can accompany your little one all the way from birth to toddler age. The products are all adjusted to the actual needs of your growing baby, so they will get all the important nutrients at all times.
If you want to treat your little one with a quality organic formula, it will almost certainly cost you considerably more than buying some of the standard products. Nevertheless, Lebenswert is, despite its premium natural ingredients, still quite an affordable option.
This is particularly important in the long run. Keep in mind that your baby should consume about 2½ ounces of formula daily per every pound of his or her body weight. Your supplies will probably disappear much faster than you might think…
Pleasant Taste and Smell
Formulas often bear quite a distinctive smell and taste that can be somewhat repulsive to both parents and babies. If your baby won’t be able to get used to the aroma and flavor of the product, he or she is most likely going to demonstrate it by crying, loudly protesting, or even gagging and vomiting during the feeding time.
Thankfully, this is very rare with Lebenswert, as its taste and aroma are both quite mild and pleasant. The manufacturer tried to get as close to the natural taste and smell of breastmilk with this product, and most babies will instinctively react to that positively.
Major Ingredients of Lebenswert Formula
As I’ve already emphasized before, the Lebenswert formula is full of top-quality ingredients and nutrients that will help your little one grow into a healthy toddler and kid. Although different stages of this product can contain different amounts of certain ingredients, the most important nutrients can be found in all of them. We’ll focus on each of them individually.
Of course, no product is perfect. Even Lebenswert contains some ingredients that can be considered controversial. We’ll talk about these substances too to understand how harmful they can or cannot potentially be in these particular products.
First and foremost, you should know that if your baby suffers from lactose intolerance, Lebenswert formula will not be good for you (you can try some of these lactose-free alternatives instead). But if you don’t have any concerns about lactose, rest assured that these formulas are full of top quality. Bioland-certified organic skim milk is one of the best natural sources of healthy fats for your kid.
Lactose is also the most important carbohydrate found in breastmilk. It creates a good environment for the spread of healthy bacteria in the digestive system and helps your kid with the proper development of the related organs. Moreover, lactose is also important for an infant’s brain development and bone strength.
Omega-3 (DHA, ALA) and Omega-6 (LA) fatty acids
Fatty acids are some of the most important and healthiest ingredients you can find in any baby food product. According to the newest regulations imposed by European authorities, all baby formulas must contain these beneficiary ingredients, so they were recently added into all Lebenswert products too.
When it comes to Omega-3, Lebenswert contains both plant (ALA) and animal-sourced (DHA) variants of these acids. They are great for brain and heart health, and they also help control possible inflammation within the organism.
Omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids are represented in Lebenswert products by linoleic acid. This essential fatty acid plays a major role in a child’s development by optimizing efficient digestion and keeping insulin sensitivity healthy.
Vitamins and Minerals
Lebenswert formula is also full of vitamins and healthy minerals:
- For example, vitamin C boosts a baby’s immunity and strengthens blood vessels, bones, and gums.
- Vitamin A supports physical growth and combats infections.
- Vitamin E is vital for preterm infants as it reduces the risk of anemia and some other associated issues.
- Vitamin K prevents excessive bleeding and hemorrhages.
- Vitamin B1, also known as Thiamine, promotes the healthy development of nerves and muscles. Moreover, it helps organisms turn carbohydrates into energy.
- Vitamin B3, Niacin, is essential for the whole system of metabolism.
- Vitamin B5 is critical to the production of red blood cells and multiple hormones.
- Vitamin D is essential for strong bones and teeth.
Lebenswert formulas also contain Zinc Sulfate, Calcium Pantothenate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Vitamin B6, Potassium Iodate, Folic Acid, Sodium Selenate, Biotin, and some other valuable ingredients that will help your baby grow healthy and strong.
Now let’s focus on several substances found in Lebenswert products that can probably make some parents a bit anxious. One such controversial ingredient is called maltodextrin, a polysaccharide derived from plants that are often added to food to increase its sweetness and improve its overall taste.
Some of the negative connotations associated with this substance include troublesome digestion, gas, bloating, or even allergic reactions. In large amounts, it can reportedly also increase blood sugar and cause weight gain.
First and foremost, Lebenswert does not use maltodextrin in its Stage 1 products, so the smallest babies will not come across this substance in its formulas at all. As for the formulas for older infants and toddlers, maltodextrin is present but stays within the safe limits, so it shouldn’t pose any real danger.
Nevertheless, if you want to avoid this substance altogether, note that Lebenswert products are probably not your best option.
Starch is another unpopular yet prevalent ingredient that you can find in most baby formulas. It mostly serves to thicken the fluids so that the formula would not be too watery, and it also helps babies to feel comfortably full after feeding. Moreover, starch is also adding more storable energy to your baby.
On the other hand, starch is sometimes associated with various digestive problems, including diarrhea or excessive gases.
Again, Lebenswert only adds starch to its Stage 2 and Stage 3 products, so your newborn will not come across this substance at all. In comparison with some other formulas, Lebenswert’s amount of starch is also quite small.
Besides lactose, an animal-sourced fat, all formulas also contain some sort of plant-based fat. Palm oil is one of the most common variants due to its great texture and above-average stability, yet it is also a somewhat unpopular choice – mostly due to the controversial palm oil industry that is associated with heavy deforestation and significant contribution to climate change.
Lebenswert does, unfortunately, contain palm oil, so if this is a dealbreaker for you, you must look for some other formula. Nevertheless, if your main concern is your baby’s health, rest assured that palm oil as a part of a balanced diet does not pose any particular risk to your little one.
Lebenswert formulas can accompany your kids from birth right until the moment when they start eating solid food exclusively. This formula comes in three stages. Each of them is designed specifically for the actual needs and requirements kids of a certain age have. Here’s a detailed description of these products.
Lebenswert Stage 1
Lebenswert Formula Bio Stage 1 is an infant formula designed particularly for newborns between 0 and 6 months of age. This is the most sensitive, most natural, and mildest tasting and smelling product from the Lebenswert range of formulas. According to hundreds of online reviews, it is also the most popular product among babies – most of them reportedly accept it immediately without any issues or complaints.
Stage 1 Lebenswert formula now comes with a new recipe enriched with DHA. It is completely organic, gluten-free, and full of important nutrients and vitamins. As I’ve already mentioned in the Ingredients section, this infant formula does not contain any starch or maltodextrin. Parents usually claim it’s easy to digest for their little ones as it doesn’t seem to cause any excessive bloating, gases, or colics.
Stage 1 Infant Formula Milk by Lebenswert usually comes in 500 g packages which don’t last too long – the recommended daily dose is 100 g of formula (80 g during the first month). Make sure that you stock up on the product adequately since it can be occasionally sold out.
Lebenswert Formula Bio Stage 2 is designed for a bit older babies – it is recommended from 6 months of age, and although there is no upper limit, we suggest using it approximately until your kid celebrates his or her first birthday. Again, this formula is organic and made of top-quality ingredients that should ensure easy digestion and the healthy development of your child.
The main source of energy here is lactose derived from German milk in bio quality. The product is full of non-synthetic vitamins, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and vital minerals. It is also GMO-free and gluten-free with zero added sugar. However, this formula already contains some amount of starch and maltodextrin.
Since you will already be combining this formula with solid food in your little one’s diet, the recipe now contains slightly lower doses of proteins, carbohydrates, and fat. Again, this product is available in 500 g boxes, powder form only.
Lebenswert Formula Bio Stage 3 is currently the most advanced type of formula in this range. It shouldn’t be given to babies younger than 10 months, as its recipe already counts on the well-developed digestive system of your kid. Of course, if your baby still fully thrives on the Stage 2 formula, you can move to Stage 3 later when he or she is 12 months old.
In comparison with the Stage 2 formula, Stage 3 ingredients remain very similar, although their amounts and ratio differ to reflect your baby’s changing needs. For example, there is considerably more fish oil in this formula than in the two previous products from this line, which is, unfortunately, also reflected in the somewhat fishy taste and aroma. If your baby has a picky palate or nose, this might be problematic.
Nevertheless, the formula still provides your kid with plenty of critical nutrients, including carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals that will help with a smooth transition to solid food. Lebenswert stage 3 is also currently available only in the form of powder. Packages contain 500 g of the formula.
Lebenswert Stage 1, 2, 3 Alternatives
If you, for any reason, cannot or don’t want to use the Lebenswert formula, here are some great alternatives for you to try instead:
Just like Lebenswert, Topfer is another popular option for parents who prefer organic European formulas. It’s full of healthy nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that can also be found in natural breastmilk. It can be used either exclusively or as an additional source of nutrition for breastfed babies. Since this formula contains smaller proteins than most standard products, it is particularly good for sensitive tummies with fragile digestion.
Topfer formula is available in five different stages: PRE stage is intended for the tiniest babies from birth, although Stage 1 is also suitable for newborns. Stage 2 is made for infants who are already six months and older, Stage 3 can be used from 10 months, and Stage 4 is suitable for kids who have already celebrated their first birthday.
You can find more details on this product in our full Topfer formula review.
Hipp is another popular hypoallergenic formula made in Europe. Thanks to its thoughtful composition and easy-to-digest structure, this formula is a particularly popular choice for parents with sensitive babies who struggle with most standard products. The German Hipp formula contains valuable probiotics that help your kid with digestion and improve their immunity.
Hipp formulas are available in numerous variants and alternatives. Combiotic range, for example, contains 100% organic ingredients and comes in different stages from birth to toddler age. Hipp Anti-reflux Baby formula is suitable for kids who suffer from reflux and painful colics. Hipp Goodnight is a formula created specifically for evenings – it ensures easy digestion and undisturbed sleep.
Hipp also makes baby food for older kids, including various porridges, mixed stews, fruit snacks, etc. Our full Hipp formula review will provide you with more information.
Kendamil is a famous British baby formula that attracts many parents with its thoughtful selection of ingredients of premium quality. This formula, for example, uses whole milk instead of a skimmed one, and it also replaces palm oil and soy with some other, healthier, and environmentally friendlier alternatives.
Kendamil also avoids starch, sugar, artificial preservatives, and GMO ingredients. Moreover, all the used nutrients are sourced and extracted naturally. Reportedly, this brand is even supplying the British Royal family with its products, so your little ones will be fed like real princes and princesses. We have analyzed this formula in detail in our full Kendamil review – check it out for more information.
For more recommended baby formulas that can be used instead of Lebenswert, check out our list of the best hypoallergenic formulas that you can currently find on the market.
Answer: Once you’ve fully prepared your Lebenswert formula, it should be consumed in 24 hours. You should always store the mixed formula in the refrigerator. After it expires, throw any remaining formula away and clean the bottle or container where it was stored thoroughly.
Answer: Some mothers use formula as supplementary food while they still keep breastfeeding. If this is your case, rest assured that there is nothing wrong with combining natural breast milk with Lebenswert formula. You can even safely mix the two in the same bottle or container if your baby prefers it this way.
First, prepare your formula as you would normally do, and then add breastmilk. The two substances should blend pretty well, although the mixture might appear to be a bit more liquid than formula alone. Just keep in mind that even though breastmilk can be refrigerated and consumed for up to 5 days, once it’s mixed with formula, you need to use or discard it in 24 hours.
Answer: Yes, the Lebenswert formula is gluten-free, so it is suitable for babies who must avoid gluten in their food. The formula also contains no traces of peanuts, wheat, soy, maltodextrin, starch, GMO, or added sugar.
Answer: In general, many people believe that European baby formulas are of better quality in comparison with their American counterparts. Although this certainly does not apply to each and every European/American brand and product, it is true that most European formulas consist of more natural and safe ingredients and mimic the quality of maternal milk much better.
That’s probably the main reason why Lebenswert and some other European formulas have so many American customers these days.
Answer: European formulas are often hardly accessible in the US. It’s because they are not officially allowed to be sold here as they are often not regulated and approved by the FDA. It can therefore be quite problematic to find a German formula like Lebenswert in American stores. Nevertheless, many international online stores offer delivery of these products to the US, so American parents can access them this way.
Lebenswert Stage 1 – 3: Final Thoughts
If you’re looking for a modern, tasteful, organic formula that will provide your little one with all the nutrients he or she needs, Lebenswert is certainly a reasonable choice. Its composition is full of non-artificial vitamins, essential fatty acids, important minerals, and top-quality German milk. Babies seem to adapt to it very well and parents are usually happy with it too, since its price is, given the long list of premium ingredients, relatively reasonable.
On the other hand, parents might be discouraged by the presence of some not-so-popular ingredients in Stage 2 and Stage 3 products from this range. Children might also be put off by a somewhat fishy aroma and taste of the Stage 3 formula, which contains a larger dose of fish oil. Nevertheless, the only way to discover if this formula truly works for you is by trying it out. I believe it’s certainly worth it.
In any case, I hope that this article helps you understand all the advantages, potential weaknesses, and different stages of the Lebenswert formula so that you can make an informed decision.
Would you like to explore more options first? Check out our Ultimate Gerber Good Start Soothe Formula Review too!