June 20, 2001
Research: Causes and Prevention
Question from :
I am not clear about a recent response if you are saying that there is a correlation or not about Nutramigen’s protective ability. It sounds like you are saying that Nutramigen may protect babies from getting the children’s diabetes. While I have not seen the evidence you speak of, I question if the corn syrup solids in Nutramigen might be metabolized similarly as in adults and cause diabetic onset.
I an inquisitive since our twin boys have two grandparents type 2 (adult) diabetes in their history. One infant is on Nutramigen due to blood in the stool. He is 11 weeks old and still has traces of blood, even though it is diminishing each week.
Do you have any comment on a Canadian study (by Truth in Labeling Campaign) on Nutramigen (http://www.truthinlabeling.org/formulacopy.html) that says it contains high amounts of neurotoxins relative to other infant formulas? Could these neurotoxins affect diabetic onset or is a neurotoxin a chemical that slowly degrades cellular structure?
The jury is still out on the question as to whether early exposure to cow’s milk is an environmental trigger of the autoimmune process in type�1A (autoimmune) diabetes. There have been good studies in Finland and New Zealand that suggest that it is; but DAISY (Diabetes and AutoImmune Study in Youth) in the U.S. has shown no evidence of this. The theory that specific milk proteins especially B + A1 beta caseins, which are present in only certain herds, might account for these differences is still unconfirmed. Since Nutramigen is a protein hydrolysate, it is very unlikely to predispose to diabetes in this way although the word ‘protective’ is rather too strong. It would be a very cumbersome hypothesis to prove one way or another and I know of no study that tried to do it. In any case there is no evidence that early exposure to cows milk has any link to type�2 diabetes. Nor is there any evidence to link corn syrup solids to any form of childhood diabetes.
As to the information in the Truth in Labelling web site, I have to say that I thought that it was seriously misleading on two counts especially. The first was the wholly unsupported implication that the three normal amino compounds cysteine, aspartic acid and glutamic acid were ‘neurotoxic’ and the second was the figures given for the free amino acid content of Nutramigen as opposed to a number of other whole protein formulae. In Nutramigen the constituent free amino acids are made available by protein hydrolysis before ingestion and in the other formulae the protein is broken down in the stomach and upper small intestine. The net absorption of free amino acids is essentially the same.