Colostrum is the first milk produced for about 5 days after birth. Colostrum is loaded with nutrients and immune-boosting compounds.

Functions of Colostrum

Colostrum not only meets all the nutritional needs of the baby in the first few days of life, but also strengthens the immune system and protects against diseases.

  • Colostrum is easy to digest.
  • Colostrum is full of antibodies and white blood cells —it functions like your baby’s first immunization.
  • Immunoglobulin A (SIgA), found in high amounts in colostrum, protects the baby’s gastrointestinal tract and helps kill viruses and bacteria.
  • Colostrum is a natural laxative. It speeds up the baby’s bowel movements and helps the baby get rid of meconium, which is feces that accumulate in the intestines before birth. Since meconium contains bilirubin, the laxative effect of colostrum helps prevent neonatal jaundice.

Stages of breast milk

After colostrum, transitional breast milk (the second stage of breast milk and the combination of colostrum and mature milk) and mature breast milk (the last stage of breast milk) begin to be produced. Colostrum is produced in very small amounts, but it is sufficient to meet the baby’s needs in the first days. When transitional milk begins to come, the amount of milk produced increases. Colostrum is usually golden yellow or light orange in color because it contains high levels of beta-carotene. Colostrum also has a thicker consistency than transitional milk and mature milk.

Breastfeed your baby frequently

​Colostrum provides great health benefits for babies, since newborns’ stomachs are quite small, they can only be fed in limited amounts at a time. That’s why they need multiple breastfeeding sessions a day to meet their needs. Additionally, frequent breastfeeding helps you establish your breastfeeding technique and routine and helps increase milk production.


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