Topics Discussed: breast feeding; child development; feeding behaviors; immunity, mucosal; intestinal bacteria; milk, human; mucosal immune system; neonatology; nutrition and nutritional deficiencies.
Sections: Contraindications to Breast-Feeding, Breast-Feeding Promotion, Normal Lactation, Breast-Feeding Guidance, Nutritional Supplementation, References.
Excerpt:"The World Health Organization, the
American Academy of Pediatrics, and all major health organizations
recommend that all infants should be exclusively breast-fed for
the first 6 months of life, and breast-feeding should be continued
while adding weaning foods for the next 6 months and then for as
long as mother and child desire (unless there is a medical contraindication).1,2 Human
milk has evolved for the human infant and is ideally structured
to meet the nutritional needs for infant growth and development.
It provides a variety of bioactive components that protect from
infection and promote normal development.3 These
include hormones (oxytocin, thyroid-stimulating hormone, growth
hormone, thyroxine, cortisol insulin), growth factors (epidermal
growth factor, nerve growth factors, somatomedin-C, insulinlike
growth factors), neuropeptides (somatostatin, neurotensin, vasoactive
peptides), inflammatory and immunomodulatory agents (cytokines), and
pheromones, which stimulate suckling behavior.4-6 The
relative composition of milk and its bioactive agents differ from
one mother to the next depending on her past experience, her genetic
makeup, her diet, and the gestational age of her infant. The composition of
the mother's milk changes over time following birth and
over the course of the feeding...."
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