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Helping Your Baby Grow

Fortifying your milk: Adding calories, fat and protein

  • Breastfeeding a babyIn the last months of pregnancy, the fetus needs a lot of calcium to build strong bones, and protein and fat to build body tissues
  • Because they missed those last weeks of pregnancy, preemies need extra calcium, phosphorus, protein and fat
  • We will fortify your breastmilk with these extra nutrients to help your baby grow better and prevent weak bones (rickets)
  • We start to add “fortifier” around the time your baby is taking all nutrition by mouth or gavage
  • Fortifier is made from either human or cow’s milk

Why do preemies need vitamins and iron?

  • Preemies need extra vitamin D to help keep their bones strong and prevent rickets
  • Preemies all have low iron
  • Your baby will be started on an iron supplement before you go home to build up his/her red blood cells
  • Iron drops can be poisonous for other children; store your preemie’s iron supplement in a safe place if you have young children in the house

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