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Keywords:

  • lutein;
  • lycopene;
  • β-carotene;
  • tolerance;
  • infant formula

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Human milk is the gold standard of infant nutrition and is a source of important substances, including carotenoids. Infant formulas are designed to mimic the composition and/or performance of human milk, although currently carotenoids are not routinely added to US infant formulas. The aim of this study was to assess plasma concentrations of β-carotene, lutein and lycopene 56 days after feeding infants milk-based infant formula without (CTRL) or with different concentrations of added carotenoids (L1 and L2).

RESULTS

Plasma carotenoid concentrations increased in infants fed carotenoid-supplemented formulas as compared with the control formula with no added carotenoids. At study day 56, infants fed the supplemented formulas (L1 and L2) had mean plasma lutein, β-carotene and lycopene concentrations that were within the range of a concurrent group of human milk-fed infants (HM). Anthropometric measurements were comparable among all study groups.

CONCLUSION

Plasma carotenoid concentrations of infants fed the supplemented formulas were within the range of the HM group and are consistent with reported plasma carotenoid ranges in human milk-fed infants. The experimental formulas were well tolerated and anthropometric measurements were comparable among all study groups. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry