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Breast milk au naturel

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Adding nutrients to breast milk for preemie babies doesn’t do anything to increase weight or length during their first year.

The study results surprised lead researcher Dr. Gitte Zachariassen, a pediatrician in Denmark. At his hospital, preterm infants (those born between 24 and 32 weeks) receive fortified breast milk or formula to support growth and health generally. The researchers fully expected that the protein fortifier would continue its good effect if it were sent home with the mothers to mix with their breast milk after leaving the hospital. Not so.

About 300 preterm babies were studied. Around 100 were formula fed upon checking out from the hospital. Of the other approximate 200, the group was split in half. One group received the protein fortifier the other group did not. Both groups committed to breastfeeding for as long as possible.

At the end of a year, there was no discernible difference between the straight breast milk and fortified breast milk babies. The formula babies were slightly heavier.

Zachariassen said they would continue the study. He suggested that perhaps there wasn’t enough protein fortifier used and increasing the supplement could have good effect.

I might suggest that breast milk is good enough the way it is. There is no reason to fool with Mother Nature.

Source: Reuters


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