FIGURE 5-3 Change in mean milk intakes by individual infants (ages 6 to 24 weeks at week 1 of the experimental period) with change in maternal energy intake. The period of energy restriction for the mothers in the experimental group was week 2 of the 3-week experimental period. From Strode et al. (1986) with permission.

1,500 kcal/day were reduced by an average of 15% (109 g/day) during the week after restriction had ceased (Figure 5-3). Although prolactin levels before maternal energy restriction were not correlated with milk volume, there was a correlation between change in prolactin concentration after energy restriction and subsequent milk volume. The authors concluded that the impact of longer periods of energy restriction requires further investigation.

In a subsequent study (Dewey et al., in press), no relationship was found between maternal weight loss1 from months 1 to 3 of lactation and milk volume at 3 months post partum; this confirmed the work of Butte et al. (1984a).


Mean, 1 kg (˜ 2 lb); range, 0 to 6 kg (˜ 13 lb).

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