October 1984

Zinc Absorption From Human Milk: Need for Zinc Supplementation

Author Affiliations

Department of Pediatrics and Obstetrics-Gynecology R. N. T. Medical College Udaipur 313 001 (Raj), India

Am J Dis Child. 1984;138(10):989-990. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1984.02140480091030

Sir.—The article entitled "Zinc Absorption From Human Milk, Cow's Milk, and Infant Formulas" by Sandström et al1 is a valuable contribution to the understanding of zinc absorption for neonatologists interested in human milk as a source of nutrition for neonates. The comment that zinc deficiency is very rarely observed in breast-fed infants is questionable because of reports of zinc deficiency in infants who are fed exclusively on human milk.2,3 The recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics to supplement infant formula with zinc,4 because of the lower bio-availability of zinc from formula than from human milk, needs to be looked into, as the theoretical amount of zinc intake by a 1,000-g infant from the mature milk of an Indian mother will fall short for the daily recommended intake for such an infant.5 The zinc content of mature milk from 35 Indian mothers was found to

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