If your baby was born prematurely, it can be an overwhelming time for you as a parent. Premature babies, especially those weighing 1500 g or less at birth, have special nutritional needs.
Compared to term babies, premature babies need more energy to grow, and because they grow at a rapid pace, they also need more protein, minerals and other nutrients.
Breast milk is important for all babies, including your premature baby, and nothing else provides the same benefits. In addition to nutrition, it supports the baby’s developing immune system and provides the baby with protection against infections. Breast milk is also developed specifically to provide optimal nutrition for human babies.
Because of its health benefits, the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) policy recommends the use of human milk for all preterm infants, whether mother’s own milk or pasteurized donor human milk (when mother’s own milk is unavailable).
Human milk and has multiple benefits that help the preterm baby not only grow and survive, but thrive. Human milk also helps reduce many other serious preterm complications and thus should be considered an essential part of neonatal care.
Speak with your healthcare professional about your baby’s nutritional needs and see if they believe your baby can benefit from a 100% human milk–based diet.
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