Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

Nutrient adequacy of exclusive breastfeeding for the term infant during the first six months of life

World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 47
Publication date: 2002
Languages: English
ISBN: 9241562110



This review, which was prepared as part of the background documentation for a WHO expert consultation, evaluates the nutrient adequacy of exclusive breastfeeding for term infants during the first 6 months of life. Nutrient intakes provided by human milk are compared with infant nutrient requirements.

To avoid circular arguments, biochemical and physiological methods, independent of human milk, are used to define these requirements. This review is limited to the nutrient needs of infants. It does not evaluate functional outcomes that depend on other bioactive factors in human milk, or behaviours and practices that are inseparable from breastfeeding, nor does it consider consequences for mothers.