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Why do breast-fed babies poop more than bottle-fed babies?

Charles I. Schwartz, MD
Pediatrics

Initially breastfed babies will have small, frequent bowel movements in the first few weeks of life. It is common for breastfed infants after a few weeks to slow down to daily to every few days for bowel movements. 

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Breast-fed babies tend to make more poops than formula-fed ones: two to five a day, maybe even after every feeding, compared to one or two a day for formula-fed infants. Why? Breast milk contains immunoglobulins, substances produced by the body's immune system, which also work as natural laxatives. This is especially helpful for clearing meconium, while also contributing to frequent pooping and a lack of constipation in nursing babies. These poops tend to be less smelly than poops from kids drinking formula; nature's way of saying thank you, perhaps, for using breast milk. But breast-fed babies may vary their patterns; what you eat and drink gets passed along in the milk, and that may or may not agree with your child.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.