How much milk to give to baby according to his age?
One might think that feeding a young baby is simple: he only drinks milk, how can he be wrong? However, for many mothers, breastfeeding their child - bottle or breast - can turn into a headache and be a source of concern. Am I giving him enough? Is he taking enough? He is still hungry even though I respect the doses for his age, what should I do? How do you know if he is suckling enough when he is at the breast? Aurélia Bardot, nutritionist specializing in children's nutrition, and Carole Hervé, IBCLC lactation consultant and author, answer these questions.
Different milk needs at each age
Until the baby's food diversification around 4 months, milk is his only food. Whether maternal or in the form of infant formula, milk is a complete food for newborns and provides them with everything they need. "From the day of his birth and over the months, the quantities of milk he needs increase at the same time as the size of his stomach and his nutritional needs", explains Aurélie Bardot.
How much milk for the newborn?
The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding for babies for the first 6 months of life. When the mother cannot or does not wish to breastfeed, she can turn to infant formulas adapted to her needs, called "first age milk", which can be given to her until she is 6 months old. This infant milk, lower in protein than cow's milk but enriched with essential fatty acids and vitamin D, is mainly in the form of milk powder to be reconstituted. "For this, you have to be careful to use the scoop adapted to the box and not another", insists the nutritionist. "Each scoop must be leveled and mixed with 30 ml of water".
The quantities of milk per day are given as an indication, and it must be kept in mind that each baby is unique and that we must adapt to their needs.
Between the day of his birth and his 7th day of life, the baby sees his milk needs increase by 60 ml per day, divided into 6 to 10 bottles.
- The 1st day: the newborn should drink about 60 ml of milk,
- The 2nd day: his needs increase to 120 ml of milk,
- The 3rd day: 180 ml of milk,
- The 4th day: 240 ml of milk,
- The 5th day; 300ml of milk,
- The 6th day: 360 ml of milk,
- On the 7th day: 420 ml of milk.
Then, between the 8th day of life and the end of the 1st month, the baby drinks on average between 500 to 600 ml of infant milk per day, always divided into 6 to 10 bottles of 60 to 90 ml on average.
How much milk at 1 month?
At one month of life, the infant drinks an average of 600 to 700ml. He is generally able to drink slightly larger quantities with each intake: 5 to 6 distributed bottles of 120 ml on average.
How much should a 2 month old baby drink?
Between 2 months and 3 months of life, the baby drinks an average of 700 to 800ml of infant milk per day. It can generally be increased to 5 bottles per day of 150 ml each. However, some babies stay at 6 feeds a day.
How much does a 3 month old baby drink?
Between 3 and 4 months of life, the child needs on average 800 to 850ml of milk. When some stay at 5 bottles of 150 ml, others go to 4 of 180 ml.
How much does a baby drink from 4 months?
From the end of the 4th month, the child is now ready to diversify his diet. Milk is no longer his only food, but it must remain the most important. His daily consumption of milk remains on average 800 to 900 ml per day with a minimum of 500 ml.
How do you know when to increase the doses of baby bottles?
Infants know how to regulate their appetite and eat their fill, not only over a meal but also throughout the day. It is important that they do not feel rationed in terms of quantity. Also, as soon as baby completely finishes his bottles, it is a sign that he must increase his ration by an additional dose. A baby with a good appetite is often a baby with higher needs.
When to switch to the 210 ml bottle?
It is generally around the time of food diversification, so around 4 months, that the child switches to 210 ml bottles.
How to calculate the amount of milk the baby needs?
It is to the French inventor, Nicolas Appert - best known for the invention of the method of preserving food by canning - that we owe this simple calculation rule, allowing you to know the quantity of milk necessary for your baby. from birth to four months of age, depending on weight. This rule, named after its inventor, consists of dividing the baby's weight in grams by 10, and adding 250 to the total. "The result obtained is the quantity of milk the baby needs, in ml per day, to within more or less 100 ml", indicates the nutritionist.
Weight of the child in grams / 10) + 250) = quantity of milk in ml / day +/- 100 ml.
And for breastfeeding women?
For nursing mums, neither measuring powdered milk, nor bottles, nor calculations: it is not always easy to remain calm in a world where everything is quantified. How to be reassured in case of doubt?
How can you be sure he is getting the right amount of milk?
If it is impossible to measure the quantities of milk absorbed by the baby, it is however possible to check what he rejects, through stools and urine.
On the 1st day of life, the breastfed infant eats between 25 and 50 ml of colostrum. He emits during the day a black stool and fills a diaper with urine.
On the 2nd day, he takes between 115 and 185 ml and produces 2 black to khaki stools and 2 layers of urine,
On the 3rd day, the baby drinks 200 ml of transitional milk. He has on average 3 khaki stools during the day and fills 3 layers of urine.
On the 4th day, 400 ml of milk are necessary to cover the baby's needs, which emits on average 3 yellow stools of one tablespoon and 5 layers of urine.
Between D5 and D7, the baby regains its birth weight: this is a sign that it is feeding well at the breast.
After the first week and during the first month, the child produces on average 3 large stools, the size of the palm of an adult's hand and fills 6 heavy layers of urine.
From the second month, the breastfed child may not have a bowel movement for several days. "It shouldn't be a concern if and only if: he has unrestricted access to the breast, he appears healthy, he continues to gain weight, he suckles efficiently, he passes gas, and he fills out 6 heavy diapers urine" insists Carole Hervé. It's a classic phenomenon called "sparse bowel movements at the breast" but it's not constipation. When the stool finally arrives, it's in abundance and the child risks having it from head to toe!
I express my milk: how much breast milk to give to baby?
Once the breastfed child has reached his "cruising" rhythm from the 3rd month, he needs about 750-800ml of milk per 24 hours. "When the mother is away, she can make an approximate calculation that will give her a theoretical figure for the quantity of milk to leave for her baby: 800 ml / 24 and multiplied by the number of hours of separation", indicates the counselor in lactation.
How much milk for a premature baby?
When baby arrives before the 37th week of pregnancy, it is considered premature. When the mother wishes and can, breast-feeding is still recommended because it contains protective agents that protect against diseases - retinopathy, bronchopulmonary dysplasia - and acute infections likely to affect young premature babies.
In the case of formula feeding, it is not the quantities of infant formula that change, but its composition. "The stomach of a baby born prematurely is small, it is not possible to increase the volume of his ration. We therefore give him a specific milk whose composition is adapted to his needs", explains Aurélia Bardot.