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Extended Breastfeeding Associated with Anemia in Babies – What you can do

by Randall Neustaedter OMD

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A study published in the journal Pediatrics found an association between prolonged breastfeeding and low iron levels in children. For every month of breastfeeding the risk of iron deficiency anemia increased by 5 percent. Children who breastfed for more than 12 months had almost twice the risk of developing iron deficiency anemia compared to babies who nursed for less than 12 months. This should alert parents and health care providers to the importance of including iron sources in the diets of babies and young children.

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  • http://twitter.com/JanDonnell Jan O’Donnell

    This seems a bit crazy to me as I’m sure most mothers who are still breast feeding a child past 6 months would incorporate more solid foods as well and not just depend entirely on milk any more than formula fed babies would. I breast fed my first son for eighteen months but it became less a meal and more a ‘comfort’ thing and his eating of ‘normal’ foods progressed as would be expected. I’m sure an older child would also suffer some deficiency if fed on formula milk alone, not to mention all the unnatural ingredients found in formula milk which cannot be healthy.