Does Milk Contain Iron?


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Kath Senior answered
Cow's milk is very low in iron and is not a good dietary source of this mineral. It is poorly tolerated by children less than one year in any case and experts recommend that babies are breast until the age of one year for many reasons, only one of which is that this is the best way to ensure a good iron supply.

Human breast milk is very rich in iron and the mineral is present in a form that is very easily absorbed by infants under the age of one year. At this stage in life, a human child is capable of absorbing about 50 per cent of the iron available in its food. In later life, this reduces to between 2 and 35 per cent, depending on whether the food source is of plant or animal origin.

Children who are unable to breast feed for any reason should be given specially formulated infant milk, which is enriched with the correct quantity of iron.

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