The vitamin that baby needs does not belong to breast
Health Desk: Mothers must take vitamin D supplements to protect their newborns from crippling illnesses, a new study warns.
A fifth of American newborns (roughly 800,000 babies a year) are vitamin D deficient, figures show, leaving them at risk of brittle bones and rickets.
Mothers are urged to breastfeed, if possible, in order to give their infants the maximum dose of nutrients.
But new research by the Mayo Clinic has confirmed what many parents fear: breast milk rarely provides enough vitamin D for newborns.
Experts insist this should not be a reason to choose bottle-feeding - which is costly, with varying levels of nutrients, and often not easy for babies to digest.
Instead, the researchers say all new mothers should be told to take up a regime of vitamin D supplements - or feed the supplements direct to their child.