Q: It seems like Nutricia has amino-acid based products that are for children. Can teenagers and adults use Neocate products?
A: We get questions about using Neocate for older children, teenagers, and adults pretty often. This is especially common when folks are diagnosed with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) beyond childhood and an elemental diet is recommended. Here’s what you need to know:
Neocate’s tailored nutrition
The Neocate products are all designed and tailored for specific age ranges. This helps ensure that growing children who need amino acid-based nutrition get the right nutrients for their age, especially when formula is their only source (“sole sourc”) of nutrition. For instance, Neocate Syneo Infant and Neocate Splash products have different levels of vitamins and minerals to meet the different nutrition needs of infants versus toddlers and children. With this in mind, there are two ways that Neocate products, primarily Neocate Splash and Neocate Junior, can be used beyond childhood.
Neocate products can be used for supplemental nutrition
For many people with severe food allergies or conditions like EoE, it can be difficult to get 100% of the essential nutrients from diet. This is because many foods that have to be avoided are rich in important nutrients like protein, calcium, vitamin D, iron, essential fats, and more.
For many folks who avoid these foods, Neocate Splash is a supplemental source of those nutrients. For instance, many of them consume it with their meals in place of cow milk to ensure a more balanced diet. Neocate Splash and Neocate Junior are often used this way with elimination diets, such as the six-food elimination diet. Neocate products can be useful as supplemental nutrition for folks of all ages.
Can Neocate products be a “sole-source” of nutrition beyond childhood?
Using a product “sole source” means that a person gets all of his/her calories from that product. Ideally, the product should be “nutritionally complete.” That means that it provides 100% or more of all vitamins and minerals in the amount of calories a person needs. Neocate Splash and Neocate Junior products are often the only source of nutrition for children over 1 year. We formulated Neocate Splash and Junior to provide all of the essential vitamins and minerals children need.
For adults, whether or not Neocate can meet 100% of nutrition needs depends on a few factors.
- Nutrient needs: Our nutrient needs change as we age. They are also different for women who are pregnant or nursing. Some people also have higher needs for some nutrients.
- Calorie needs: Everyone has different calorie needs. The number of calories you consume of Neocate determines the amount of each nutrient you get.
We’re not one-size-fits all: everyone has unique nutritional needs. It’s important to check with your healthcare team to see how Neocate can fit into your elimination diet. Your dietitian or doctor will consider the nutrients in Neocate, your calorie needs, and your nutrient needs to advise you.
Teenagers and adults with high energy needs might be able to meet 100% of their nutrient needs with Neocate as their sole source of nutrition. Others who don’t need as many calories might need a supplement along with Neocate to meet 100% of their nutrient needs.
The good news is that amino acid-based formulas have come a long way in the past 20 years. Neocate Splash comes in drink boxes in four great flavors: perfect for busy teens and to add variety. Neocate Junior comes in 5 flavors and has added prebiotic fiber to help support gut health. (An unflavored version is available without prebiotic fiber.) Neocate Nutra mixes with water to a pudding-like consistency. You can use Neocate Nutra in recipes or to provide some texture to an otherwise liquid elemental diet.
What if I or my healthcare team have questions?
As always, families and health care providers are welcome to contact us with questions!
Last updated January 24, 2019