Zachary Wilson

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Exclusively breastfed infants require that adequate amounts of carbohydrates, fatty acids, proteins, and mineral nutrients are available to foster normal skeletal and neuromuscular growth and development. Minerals such as calcium, sodium, and potassium, which are crucial for normal physiological function, are found in variable concentrations in human milk. As well, antibodies and other rarefied minerals - selenium, zinc, manganese, and copper - are critical for protection against infection and proper function of the immune system and are supplied to the neonate by the mother's milk. Although many studies have investigated the trace mineral concentrations in breast milk (1,2) few have examined the correlation between maternal dietary intake of these minerals and their concentration in breast milk. Furthermore, few studies have explored the mineral content of human milk in New Mexican populations, specifically nonHispanic whites and southwestern Hispanics.