Feeding babies

Feeding babies

NCT fully supports and respects all parents on their choice of feeding their baby - whether they breastfeed, bottle feed or both.

A consultation version of NCT's revised Baby Feeding policy is available for comment. The policy sets out NCT’s beliefs and principles, including the belief that parents should have every opportunity for positive feeding experiences.  Read about the revised Baby Feeding Policy in A new feeding policy for new times.

NCT values and approaches to infant feeding support: a message framework is for NCT volunteers, practitioners and staff. It answers common questions about NCT’s role in providing information, services, mutual support and undertaking lobbying work relating to infant feeding. Promoting positive experiences: NCT values and infant feeding introduces the NCT's values and infant feeding message framework.

NCT authors Heather Trickey and Mary Newburn have published a paper in the journal Maternal and Child Nutrition called Goals, dilemmas and assumptions in infant feeding education and support. Applying theory of constraints thinking tools to develop new priorities for action.

Infant feeding impact review summary report: methods, findings and recommendations has been published. Findings of the impact review fed into the 2020 Strategy and informed the strategic priority to enhance our baby feeding information and services, providing information focused on parents’ needs, and to continue to lobby for better support for feeding, in partnership with other organisations.
An overview of key findings and new strategic developments are reported in NCT and infant feeding: supporting mothers' decisions and protecting breastfeeding.

Drinks for babies aged six months and over is an evidence made easy guide to help practitioners separate the evidence from the marketing hype.

Feeding a baby with cleft palate is a mother's diary during the 26 weeks she expressed breastmilk for her daughter.

In the UK a majority of mothers plan to breastfeed and a significant minority (about a quarter) use formula milk from the start.  

NCT is mother-focused when it comes to feeding decisions, believing that parents are motivated to give their babies the best start to life, sometimes in difficult circumstances, and that positive feeding experiences are one important aspect of a good start. 

There are a variety of research overviews in the reviews of evidence section that cover the topic of feeding babies including peer support for breastfeeding continuation, choosing a formula and colic in babies.

NCT supports the UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative call to ‘Change the Conversation’,  with three linked pieces from Heather Trickey, Dawn Leeming and Fiona Woollard, arguing for a more supportive environment for mothers as they make their feeding decisions.

NCT prioritises the emotional well-being and autonomy of individual mothers when it comes to feeding, regardless of feeding method.

In this section you will find related documents that support and inform parents about early feeding and introducing solids, as well as evidence of health outcomes and statistics relating to feeding babies. Evidence for NCT's breastfeeding services can be downloaded here. Further information can be found on NCT's breastfeeding services page , including peer support, our quality assured and licenced Baby Cafés and one-to-one support