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Delayed Cord Clamping

At starting solids classes I always get questions about when to start solids and concern with iron levels. It's true that the most important nutrient your baby needs from food after 6 months of age is iron. Their stores from before birth run out at around 6 months of age, and iron is important for both physical and mental development. But did you know that there's something you can do during the birth that will positively or negatively affect your baby's iron stores for months? Delayed umbilical cord clamping. While iron levels are easy to check with a blood test, I would be less concerned about a baby slow to take to solids who had delayed cord clamping, as they have been shown to have higher iron levels.

What is delayed cord clamping? Leaving the umbilical cord attached to the placenta until it stops pulsing, which takes about 3-7 minutes (1). Depending on your doctor, many clamp the baby's umbilical cord within 30 seconds (midwives practice delayed clamping). The...

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