Pediatrician Urges Caution: Substituting Infant Formula with Adult Milk Poses Health Risks

Dr. Amala Okore, a Consultant Pediatrician, has cautioned mothers against replacing infant formula with adult milk, warning that it could lead to malnutrition or other health complications.

Speaking in an interview in Lagos on Tuesday, Okore expressed concern over the growing trend of parents shifting from infant formula to cow milk (adult milk) due to economic challenges.

She emphasized that infant formulas are specifically formulated with easily digestible proteins and essential micronutrients crucial for infant development, such as iron and DHA for brain support, which are lacking in adult milk.

Okore highlighted the risk of malnutrition among children fed with adult milk, attributing an increase in malnourished children at health facilities to this practice.

She underscored the long-term consequences of feeding infants with cow milk, warning of potential adverse effects on brain health and development, which could impact national productivity and GDP.

Acknowledging the financial constraints faced by many mothers, Okore stressed the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for infants below six months as a cost-effective and nutritionally beneficial alternative.

Additionally, Dr. Moruf Abdulsalam, a Consultant Pediatric Surgeon, echoed Okore’s concerns, emphasizing the critical role of adequate nutrition during infancy and early childhood for optimal growth and development.

Abdulsalam cautioned against the use of adult milk for infants, citing risks of intestinal bleeding and overloading the baby’s kidneys with excess proteins and minerals.

He urged parents to prioritize healthy choices for their infants’ nutrition and called on the government to implement policies that support citizens’ well-being.

Quest: Cris-Edesiri Odjomah

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