Infant self-regulation of breast milk intake

K. G. Dewey, B. Lonnerdal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

118 Scopus citations


In an experimental study to determine whether augmentation of maternal milk supply affects infant intake, 18 mothers of exclusively breast-fed infants stimulated milk supply by daily expression of extra milk for 2 weeks. Infant milk intake was recorded before, during and after this expression phase. All but 4 mothers increased milk production by >73 g/day over baseline, with an average increase of 124 g/day. On the average, the 14 infants of mothers who increased milk production took in significantly more milk immediately following the expression phase (849 vs. 732 g/day), but about half of them returned to near baseline levels of milk intake after 1-2 weeks. Net change in infant intake at the end of the study was positively correlated with infant weight-for-length (r=0.59) and age (r=0.58), and was unrelated to baseline milk intake (r=-0.06). Therefore, the wide range in breast milk volume in well-nourished populations is due more to variation in infant 'demand' than to inadequacy of milk production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)893-898
Number of pages6
JournalActa Paediatrica Scandinavica
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Infant self-regulation of breast milk intake'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this