Infant Nutrition (Newborn to 6 months)

Infants, especially between the ages of newborn and 6 months, depend entirely on their parents to provide them with proper nutrition that will lead to their growing strong and healthy.

N.B. During the first 4 to 6 months, your baby's diet should consist exclusively of milk until weaning begins. It is not safe to wean before 4 months, and if possible, breast milk remains the best choice when feeding a newborn baby. This is because it covers the nutritional needs of the child up to 6 months and then is a great supplement as food starts to replace milk as the main source of nutrition. Formula milk is used when breast feeding is undesired or cannot be achieved.

Doses for Bottle-Feeding

The following amounts are an approximate guide and can vary from baby to baby.

During the first two weeks of your baby's life, you should give them 90 ml of milk six times a day. In the first month (from birth to 1 month), this figure should increase to 120 ml of milk six times a day.

During the second month (from 1 month to 2 months), 150ml of milk six times a day is the recommended dose.

During the third and fourth month (from 2 months to 3 months, then from 3 months to 4 months), your baby should be getting 180ml of milk five times a day.

In the fifth and sixth months (from 4 months to 6 months), 210mls of milk 5 times a day should be sufficient for your baby.

Practical Advice

The volume suggested for each feeding bottle can be adapted more or less according to the appetite of your child, while remaining within reasonable limits (i.e. 30 ml of water + 1 level scoop of formula milk powder). Never force your child to finish their feeding bottle.

Allow for pauses during a feed to burp your baby, especially at the end. The duration of a feed can vary, but should not exceed 45 minutes. Feeds are approximately 3 hours apart, however your baby may vary slightly so be guided by them, but do not allow a newborn baby to go any longer than 6 hours without a feed. In hot weather, cooled boiled water can be given. Do not add sugar and avoid any juices when starting to wean.

Milk Terminology

1st stage milks refers to formula milk for infants, or babies between birth and 6 months. 2nd stage milks, used between 6 and 12 months, are formula "follow-on milks" usually reserved for hungrier babies. From 12 months up to 3 years, children may consume what is called growing up milk, but cows milk paired with a well balanced diet are also sufficient for a healthy diet at this stage.

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