Comparison of a lactose-free cereal-based formula and cow’s milk in infants and children with acute gastroenteritis

M. K. Bhan, N. K. Arora, V. Khoshoo, P. Raj, S. Bhatnager, S. Sazawal, K. Sharma

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22 Scopus citations


Sixty children <2 years of age suffering from mild acute gastroenteritis with <5% dehydration were randomly assigned to two different isocaloric feeding regimens, viz., a locally prepared milk-free formulation (group A) of rice, lentil, sugar, and coconut oil and a spray dried commercial cow’s milk formula (group B). There were two treatment failures in group A and one in group B. The postintervention duration of diarrhea (days) in group A (11.0 ± 10.0) was higher than in group B (7.6 ± 10.8), but these differences were not significant (p > 0.05). The energy intake (kcal/kg/24 h) on postintervention day 4 was 78.7 ± 31.7 in group A and 101.3 ± 41.1 in group B (p > 0.05). The corresponding values for day 7 were 74.2 ± 29.1 and 110.0 ± 41.1, respectively (p < 0.05). The mean weight gain (g/kg/24 h) between admission and the day of recovery in group A (2.0 ± 4.2) was significantly lower (p < 0.05) than in group B (5.8 ± 7.8). Similar trends in weight gain were observed at days 4 and 7. These findings suggest that a cow’s milk-based formula is well tolerated by majority of the infants with mild acute gastroenteritis after initial rehydration with ORS. The infants who were fed the milk-free cereal-based diet showed significantly less energy intake and gained weight less rapidly than those who were fed the cow’s milk-based formula.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)208-213
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1988


  • Feeding
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Milk-free formula

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Gastroenterology


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