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How preterm infants can benefit from Human Milk Oligosaccharides (HMOs) - Infographic

5 mins
Preterm baby in incubator

Preterm babies face specific health risks related to their immaturity / developmental needs1-2. Achieving timely enteral feeding is critical to support the development of preterm babies. HMOs play a key role in supporting early full enteral feeding. 

Click below to download the infographic or for more information visit the Nestle Nutrition Institute

  1. WHO 2012

  2. WHO 2020 (Born too soon: the global action report on preterm birth)


The World Health Organisation (WHO) has recommended that pregnant women and new mothers be informed on the benefits and superiority of breastfeeding – in particular the fact that it provides the best nutrition and protection from illness for babies. Mothers should be given guidance on the preparation for, and maintenance of, lactation, with special emphasis on the importance of a well-balanced diet both during pregnancy and after delivery. Unnecessary introduction of partial bottle-feeding or other foods and drinks should be discouraged since it will have a negative effect on breastfeeding. Similarly, mothers should be warned of the difficulty of reversing a decision not to breastfeed. Before advising a mother to use an infant formula, she should be advised of the social and financial implications of her decision: for example, if a baby is exclusively bottle-fed, more than one can (400 g) per week will be needed, so the family circumstances and costs should be kept in mind. Mothers should be reminded that breast milk is not only the best, but also the most economical food for babies. If a decision to use an infant formula is taken, it is important to give instructions on correct preparation methods, emphasising that unboiled water, unsterilised bottles or incorrect dilution can all lead to illness.