How is colostrum different from breast milk and above all, what are the virtues of what is known as “golden milk”? Midwife Rachel Halimi enlightens us.
After childbirth, colostrum is the first milk what will mom produce. “This is a transition milk having the distinction of being produced in a smaller quantity than breast milk “, explains midwife Rachel Halimi. Its color and texture also differ: colostrum is yellow orange and its liquid is thicker. When the baby is going to ingest this colostrum occurs before the milky rise.
Colostrum is ideal for the baby because it contains incredible properties. However, it is not a milk allowing the infant to gain weight, “it usually gains weight once the milk has risen, in principle between second and fourth day of life” says Rachel Halimi.
“In the past, in some cultures, mothers were made to throw this milk away, thinking that it was harmful because of its orange color” astonished Rachel Halimi “However, we realized that on the contrary it was excellent for the baby”. Nicknamed “gold liquid” for its extraordinary virtues, colostrum is kind of natural vaccine bomb who will participate in develop baby’s immunity because he’s very rich in antibodies. A boon for the newborn who does not yet have the immunity necessary to cope with all the germs to which he suddenly finds himself exposed. Also very rich in protein and low in lipids and glucose, “this transition milk is completely suitable for infants with immature digestive systems and tiny stomachs “ details the midwife. And for good reason, perfectly adapted to the nutritional profile of the newborn, it allows him to ingest only the nutrients he needs at birth. Its consumption also limits the risk of hypoglycemia. In addition, colostrum will favor its transit helping him to evacuate meconium to make room for real stools. Finally, this first milk contains very healing properties, useful in particular for helping to heal the areola of the nipple of the young mother, sometimes raw during the first days of breastfeeding.
Do you feel like breastfeeding your offspring for several months? These first days of breastfeeding allowing your baby to ingest the colostrum and enjoying its virtues can be a good compromise. We then speak of “welcome feed” or “welcome feed“, offered in all maternities. “In addition to the absorption of this first milk, it offers skin-to-skin contact and suction, two soothing actions for the newborn” points out Rachel Halimi. However, even if “all breastfeeding – including for a short time – is good to take”, the midwife wishes to warn future mothers: “when you start the breastfeeding machine, you can’t necessarily wean your baby when you want”.