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Breast is best

MagazineApril 2009 (Vol. 20 Issue 1)Breast is best

African babies who are exclusively breastfed are far less likely to develop HIV-1 infection, a new study has found

African babies who are exclusively breastfed are far less likely to develop HIV-1 infection, a new study has found.

This new discovery is at odds with earlier findings, which had suggested that breast milk was one of the main ways in which the infection is transmitted. It now appears that those babies were also eating solids along with breast milk.

When researchers looked at babies who were being fed exclusively by breast, they found that they were developing a natural immunity. In fact, babies who were breastfed and being fed solids at the same time were almost twice as likely to die from HIV infection than those who were exclusively breastfed (Lancet, 2007; 369: 1065-6).


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