Sorry Kristin Cavallari, Making Your Own Baby Formula Is A Terrible Idea

PEOPLE magazine and Kristin Cavallari recklessly share the recipe for a DIY baby formula

PEOPLE magazine is just about the last place anyone should go for advice on, well, just about anything frankly. And just about the last person anyone should turn to for advice with regards to anything parenting related is Kristin Cavallari. Put the two together and you have a perfect storm of insanely irresponsible ‘journalism.’

I don’t make it a habit to call people out on parenting choices they make, but Cavallari remains ardently anti-vaxx, and believes that vaccines cause autism—which has been discredited more times than Kristin Cavallari can count.

Most of what appears in PEOPLE is just fluff and people assume they’re just going to read about celebrity gossip and the latest and greatest in what celebs are wearing and who they are dating and breaking up with. Hopefully very few people look to PEOPLE for advice.

But the sad reality is that people get inspiration on life choices from all sorts of sources. And that’s why their article this week titled “Kristin Cavallari’s Shares Her Homemade Goat’s Milk Baby Formula Recipe—Plus More on What She Feeds Her Kids,” is such a terrible article.

The story shares, not just Cavallari’s reasoning behind not using store-bought formula once she stops breastfeeding, but includes the recipe she and her pediatrician worked together to create.

“I would rather feed my baby these real, organic ingredients than a heavily processed store-bought formula that contains ‘glucose syrup solids,’ which is another name for corn syrup solids, maltrodextrin, carrageenan, and palm oil,” she told PEOPLE.

Never mind that store bought formulas are relentlessly and scientifically tested for safety and to ensure they are providing vital nutrients young babies need. Homemade formula simply can’t replicate what your baby will get from store-bought formula.

Thankfully, in the very middle of the article, which is bookended by Kristin’s reasoning and the recipe, there is a bit about how and why making your own formula is a very bad idea.

“Why would you want to use an alternative formula when there are well tested and tried formulas widely available?” Dr. Mark Corkins, a pediatric gastroenterologist and member of the American Academy of Pediatrics, told PEOPLE. “These cocktail formulas do not have the fortification of the vitamins and minerals that the standard formulas have. Commercial formulas are some of the most highly regulated foods with strict nutritional standards that the companies have to meet for the FDA.”

Yup.

“If we want the most natural and organic nutrition then breastfeed,” said Corkin. “A homemade formula runs a high risk of leaving an essential nutrient out, and is certainly not less work and probably not cheaper.”

But rest assured, in case anyone reading PEOPLE wants to forgo all of that sound warning and advice, the magazine saw fit to provide the full recipe and method Cavallari uses to feed her babies, with this preface: “The food I give my children is one of the things I care most about.”

I will not share that recipe and method here, because I don’t want to be a part of the problem. I hope that the general public realizes that following the advice of someone who chooses to forgo sound medical advice and scientifically proven truths is reckless and negligent, and sorry, down right stupid.

What PEOPLE fails to understand, and what my Facebook feed proved to be true as I read comments related to this piece of journalistic genius, is that most people scan headlines and leads and maybe, sometimes, the last paragraphs of the article, leaving out the juicy bit that should have been put in the form of a major warning at the top of the article in which there is a very serious ‘don’t try this at home’ stipulation.

It might save PEOPLE’s butt by adding that bit in the middle. And yet, they really should know better—this just shows that they don’t really care. In terms of return on investment, it’s such a great story: this vaxx-denier makes her kids’ formula.

With the growing number of people who forgo life-saving vaccines, they’ll just read the headline of one of their celeb heroes and scan to the bottom for how to make formula themselves and ignore the rest. That’s what makes this article so irresponsible.

I realize that I’m giving PEOPLE and Kristin Cavallari a lot of credit that maybe they’re not due. We really shouldn’t use that publication as a source of information. But I also realize the sad reality that many people do, and will. 

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