Baby's first feedings
During feedings, you hold your baby, stroke her skin and gaze into her eyes. It’s all part of nature’s bonding process that helps the two of you form a deep emotional connection.
Experts agree that breastmilk is the ideal food for babies. It offers the perfect blend
of nutrients to nourish your newborn. Breastmilk contains proteins that are easy for babies to digest, as well as protective antibodies that help your baby’s immune system ward off infection and prevent allergies. Prebiotics and probiotics are also naturally found in breastmilk—they work to help support your baby’s developing immune system.
Breastmilk also has the remarkable capability to change as your baby’s nutritional needs change. For the first three to four days, your breasts produce a thick, yellowish fluid called colostrum. It contains more protein and less fat than the breastmilk that will come later.
During the early weeks, your baby will probably breastfeed about every 2 to 3 hours for 10 to 20 minutes at each breast. When she’s hungry she may cry or become fussy, bring her fingers to her mouth, or root for the nipple.
Don’t be afraid to wake your baby for a feeding. Maintaining a consistent schedule is important for building up your milk production.
For moms who choose formula, iron-fortified infant formula provides complete nutrition and is the only alternative for breastmilk.
On average, your baby should take in about 2½ ounces of formula a day for every pound of body weight. But she will regulate her intake from day to day to meet her own specific needs. Rather than going by fixed amounts, let her tell you when she’s had enough—she may slow down, release the nipple, or even fall asleep.
When choosing a formula, remember they’re not all alike. Studies have shown that formulas made with 100% whey protein that’s partially hydrolyzed empty from your baby’s stomach faster than some other routine formulas. The faster emptying time may help reduce the potential for spitting up.
Only GERBER® GOOD START® formulas are made with 100% whey protein. Learn more about Good Start Formulas.