Exclusive Human Milk for your Baby

human milk
View/Download Exclusive Human Milk Resources

An exclusive human milk diet is vital for your baby’s health, most especially if your baby was born premature at 1,250 grams (roughly 2.7 pounds) or less. But why, exactly, is this the case? What does a 100% human milk diet consist of? How can parents ensure their baby is getting optimal nutrition from the moment they are born? Where can parents turn to if they aren’t sure how to help their child thrive? What types of questions should parents be asking the healthcare team taking care of their baby?

PreemieWorld has put together a variety of tools and resources to help answer your questions and support your preemie’s growth and survival.

 Why is an Exclusive Human Milk Diet so Important?

Every year, about 15 million preemies are born around the world. Unfortunately, many still don’t survive their ordeal. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), “in low-income settings, half of the babies born at or below 32 weeks (2 months early) die due to a lack of feasible, cost-effective care, such as warmth, breastfeeding support, and basic care for infections and breathing difficulties. In high-income countries, almost all of these babies survive.”

While we can’t yet prevent preterm birth, there are many proven strategies for helping preemies avoid complications from their early birth. In fact, WHO states that “Exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months has many benefits for the infant and mother. Chief among these is protection against gastrointestinal infections which is observed not only in developing but also industrialized countries.”

Further, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends only human milk for premature infants up to at least six months.

human milk
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