The dangers of diluting baby formula - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

The dangers of diluting baby formula

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By John Bachman email
Posted by Rachel Leigh email

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX) - It's a disturbing sign of the times: The economy is so bad, parents are making tough choices with their children.

Now, a new warning: Some Florida mothers are unknowingly risking their baby's life by diluting their baby's formula with water.

The Palm Beach County Health Department doles out more than $21 million every year for it's WIC program. WIC stands for Women Infants and Children. This free program is here to make sure babies grow up properly nourished and healthy.

"I'm really tight on money and stuff so, that was the only choice I had," said Jeri Moss.

But it was a costly choice for Moss and her infant son, LaDamian. She says she was trying to save money by diluting LaDamian's baby formula. But, last week, the 5-week-old baby started having seizures and even stopped breathing. "I was just going frantic and telling his dad to call 911. And I was just trying to get him back breathing."

LaDamian spent two days on a breathing machine, and may suffer long term effects from the diluted formula. "We do have the phone calls with moms saying or fathers even saying that I lost my job, I need help," informed Ursula Cook. 

Cook supervises the Palm Beach County Health department's WIC program. It provides free baby formula, food and nutritional counseling to families with children under the age of 5.

She says even if money is tight, parents should never ever add more water than recommended to powered formula or any water to canned. "We definitely stress the importance of mixing the formula properly."

They conduct interviews with families to make sure new babies are getting the nutrition they need. Something that may have prevented Jeri and LaDamian Moss' close call.

Moss concluded, "If I had known it was harmful, I would never have done it."

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