Breastfeeding: What are the different stages of breast milk formation?

Breastfeeding: Mother's breast milk is the main source of nutrition for the baby. A woman's body naturally begins preparing to create a new food supply for her baby during pregnancy. From the 4th week of pregnancy, a woman's body begins to form milk-producing cells called lactocytes. If you are a woman, you may start noticing breast growth during pregnancy. But remember that how much milk you produce depends on the milk-producing tissue. The milk production cycle begins right after your baby is born.

Breastfeeding: What are the different stages of breast milk formation?
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Normally, breast milk provides all the essential nutrients like proteins, minerals and fats as well as water to keep the baby hydrated. Mother's breast milk is no ordinary food for the baby - it is living "liquid gold". Breastfeeding is most important for baby.

In this article we will discuss, what are the different stages of mother's breast milk formation?

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Colostrum - the first layer of milk

Colostrum occurs during pregnancy and lasts for several days after the baby is born. This yellow sticky milk is thick and very important for protecting your baby. Colostrum is very easy to digest.

Colostrum contains the same nutrients as the later stages of milk, but the amount of these components varies and is formulated in such a way that it is suitable for the newborn baby.

Colostrum in first milk contains more antibodies and white blood cells. It protects your baby from infections and is very important for the digestive system.

After two to four days, the colostrum is replaced by transitional milk.

Transitional milk - the second layer of milk

Transition milk replaces colostrum. It is creamy and contains high levels of protein, vitamins, fat and lactose. The color of milk gradually changes from yellow to white. You may feel full, firm and slightly uncomfortable as the breasts begin to stimulate. Regular feeding can ease any discomfort during this stage.

Mature milk - the third layer of milk

After a few weeks, your milk reaches mature milk. It is light and consistent in color. But the composition of your breast milk can still vary from day to day and feeding.

For example: It may happen that, if you or your baby is sick, your body will make antibiotics to help fight the illness. As your baby grows, the composition of milk changes to match the baby's growth.

Fore Milk - Fore milk is the milk that flows at the beginning of a feed. It is watery and quenches the baby's thirst.

Hind milk – The milk that flows as your breasts empty is hind milk. It is high in fat, calories and suppresses baby's appetite.

Foremilk or hindmilk will provide your baby with the nutrients it needs to grow.

Mature milk will last until you wean the baby. As your baby gets older and is introduced to solids and liquids, the nutrients and amount of milk produced changes.

The IPA recommends that infants be exclusively breastfed for a minimum of 6 months, and breastfeeding can continue up to 2 years. The longer a mother breastfeeds her baby, the greater the health benefits for both mother and baby.

You should keep in mind that nothing can replace breast milk, both of you can enjoy the benefits of breastfeeding for many months.

Why is it important to breastfeed the baby?

Why is it important to breastfeed the baby?

Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure a baby's health and survival. However, nearly 2 in 3 babies are not exclusively breastfed for the recommended 6 months - a rate that has not improved in 2 decades.

Breast milk is the ideal food for babies. It is very safe for babies, clean and contains antibodies that help protect against many common childhood illnesses. Breast milk provides all the energy and nutrients a baby needs for the first months of life, and it supplies half or more of a baby's nutritional needs in Second half in the first year and up to one third in the second year. years of life

Breastfed babies perform better on intelligence tests, are less likely to be overweight or obese, and have a lower risk of diabetes later in life. Women who breastfeed also have a reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer.

The current situation is that inappropriate marketing of breast milk substitutes continues to undermine efforts to improve breastfeeding rates and duration worldwide.

What is recommended for breastfeeding?

The WHO and UNICEF recommend that babies start breastfeeding within the first hour of birth and are exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life – meaning no other food or liquid is provided, including water.

Babies should be breastfed on demand - this is as often as the baby wants during the day and night. Remember, no bottles, teats or pacifiers should be used.

From the age of 6 months, babies should start eating safe and adequate complementary foods and continue breastfeeding up to 2 years and beyond.

The bottom line

Mother's breast milk is very important for the baby. Currently, many people are indifferent about breastfeeding the baby due to the availability of artificial milk in the market. It should be remembered that mother's breast milk is the only food that is suitable for the baby.

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