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Parents warned against diluting breastmilk or formula

Parents are being reminded to feed their infants breastmilk or commercial formula only, following the shocking death of a baby from water intoxication.

The 10 week old baby died after her parents diluted her breastmilk with water – claiming they couldn’t afford formula – causing her to lose 20 per cent of her body weight.

The couple have been arrested and charged with murder after failing to take baby Nevaeh Marie Landell to the hospital, despite her visible symptoms.

The case serves as a reminder to parents that stretching out breastmilk or formula by adding water can be dangerous, even fatal.

Water should never be added to breastmilk and formula should be made according to the specific ratios indicated on the packaging.

Water intoxication occurs when the electrolytes, such as sodium, in baby’s bloodstream become diluted. The condition can result in serious consequences as it inhibits normal bodily functions and can lead to low body temperatures, seizures and tissue swelling.

Experts say that until your baby starts solids, breastmilk or formula provides all their necessary hydration, while additional water can actually restrict baby’s ability to absorb nutrients from milk.

After six months, cool boiled water can be introduced, however breastmilk or formula should still serve as the key component of baby’s diet for both nutrition and hydration.

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