Benefits of Colostrum

By Krista Gray, IBCLC. Last updated February 23, 2013.

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DSC_1280After giving birth, a mother’s milk is very thick, rich, and in small quantities for the first 2-5 days.  This milk is the world’s most amazing super food – colostrum.  Unable to be replicated in any laboratory, it gives babies antibodies and immune system boosting cells.  It is perfectly created for babies and helps their immature intestinal system to function effectively.  Breastfeeding often and on demand ensures that babies have plenty of stools, which helps to prevent jaundice.

A newborn baby’s stomach is only the size of a small marble.  Filling it with anything other than the richest, most perfect super food will prevent him from eating the amount of colostrum his body needs.  The thick texture causes a slower flow from the breast, a perfect primer in how to breastfeed effectively allowing him time to practice sucking, swallowing, and breathing in rhythm before a mother’s milk begins to flow stronger.

The protective qualities in colostrum are better than any vaccination and make it difficult for bacteria and allergens to attack a baby’s body.  Even if a mother does not want to continue to breastfeed her baby, giving colostrum over the first week of life has tremendous, positive health implications.

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