Vitamins for Breastfed BabiesAllison Hutton
You may be unsure if your breastfed infant requires a vitamin supplement. You may have also heard varying opinions on whether or not your baby should receive a vitamin supplement daily. There are many people who believe that a baby receives all of the necessary nutritional supplements in their mother's breast milk; after all, it is the perfect infant food.
However, it has been found that breast milk, while healthy and good for your baby, does not contain vitamins A, D, and E. Additionally, fluoride is not found in mother's milk, although it is added to most public water sources.
When asked about the subject, Dr. Thomas Whalen of Pennsylvania offered the following advice. "I recommend that breastfed infants be started on a vitamin supplement at one month of age. Usually an over-the-counter supplement such as Poly Vi Sol, or a prescription supplement containing fluoride [if the child is taking in well water] such as Poly Vi Flor, is recommended. While I strongly encourage breast-feeding, it is necessary that baby get all of his or her daily requirements of vitamins and minerals. The breast-feeding mother should also continue to take a prenatal vitamin supplement while she is nursing."
If your baby dislikes vitamin supplements, Dr. Whalen suggests mixing the dose with a favorite food or juice. If you have questions as to whether or not your baby should have daily vitamin supplements, ask your doctor.
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