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Colostrum is a sticky, thick, yellowish liquid produced by a
woman's breasts toward the end of pregnancy and during the first few days after
delivery of her baby. Colostrum contains protein, minerals, and vitamins as
well as valuable antibodies, which help protect the baby against
Women who breast-feed transfer these important nutrients to their
newborns. Colostrum is particularly suited to a newborn's needs and provides
the ideal nutrition. Its yellow tint comes from higher levels of carotene, a
form of vitamin A. Colostrum also may act as a laxative to help the infant pass
the first few bowel movements, which are a dark green substance called
After a few days, a woman's breasts start supplying the baby with
transitional milk as breast-feeding becomes established, followed by mature
milk at about 10 to 15 days after delivery.
Current as of:
June 4, 2014
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
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