Neonatology pp 557-586 | Cite as

Human Milk and Formulas for Neonatal Nutrition

  • Riccardo DavanzoEmail author
  • Jenny Bua
  • Laura Travan
Reference work entry


Human milk is a unique highly individualized nutritional liquid, with multiple biological effects. Extensive research has demonstrated health benefits for both the nursed infant and her/his mother. Moreover, breastfeeding carries social, economic, and environmental benefits. Consequently, International Health Agencies and Pediatric Scientific Societies recommend early initiation of breastfeeding, exclusive breastfeeding for around 6 months, and continuing breastfeeding after the start of weaning.

Breastfeeding should be promoted among the population of healthy term infants as well as among the NICU population. Effective promotion of breastfeeding requires adequate knowledge of the physiology of lactation, of the factors facilitating and constraining the beginning and the continuation of breastfeeding, and of the true contraindications to breastfeed.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of NeonatologyInstitute for Maternal and Child Health IRCCS ‘Burlo Garofolo’TriesteItaly
  2. 2.Department of Mother and Child HealthMadonna delle Grazie HospitalMateraItaly

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