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No cow's milk before age 1.

Babies should be breast-fed for the first six to 12 months and shouldn't be given cow's milk or low-iron formula before their first birthday, the American Academy of Pediatrics said.

In a statement released last week and published in the May edition of the American Academy of Pediatrics News, the group said the only acceptable alternative to breast milk is iron-fortified infant formula.

Appropriate solid foods and juices should be added when the child is 4 to 6 months old, said the group. "Because the milk (or formula) portion of the diet represents 35 to 100 percent of total daily calories and because whole cow's milk and breast milk or infant formula differ markedly in composition, the selection of a milk or formula has a great impact on nutrient intake," the group said.

The academy said infants who are fed whole cow's milk don't get enough iron, linoleic acid and vitamin E, and get too much sodium, potassium and protein.

According to the academy, infants fed whole cow's milk during their second six months suffered a 30 percent increase in intestinal blood loss and a significant loss of iron in their stools.
COPYRIGHT 1992 Association of Labor Assistants & Childbirth Educators
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
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Publication:Special Delivery
Date:Jun 22, 1992
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