January 20, 2020
The American Academy of Family Physicians1, the American College of Obstetrics/Gynecology2, and the World Health Organization3 all recommend that infants exclusively breastfeed for 6 months. This means that no other foods, water, or formula should be offered to infants younger than 6 months. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for around 6 months. After 6 months breastfeeding should continue, with the introduction of appropriate complementary foods, through at least 1-2 years and beyond. It should be considered normal and acceptable for mothers to breastfeed their children until two years and beyond for the many nutritional, immunologic and developmental benefits3. There is no evidence indicating an age at which breastfeeding should cease.
- American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Breastfeeding. Breastfeeding and the use of human milk. Pediatrics. 2012;129(3):e827-e841. (2012) http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/129/3/e827.full
- American College of OB/Gyn Committee Opinion 658 Optimizing Support for Breastfeeding as Part of Obstetric Practice Feb 2016 Obstet Gynceol 2016; 127 e86-92
- World Health Organization Global Strategy for infant and young child feeding https://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/infantfeeding/9241562218/en/ (accessed 12/9/19)