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J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2008 Sep;47(3):375-8. doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e3181615cba.

Influence of protein and energy intakes on body composition of formula-fed preterm infants after term.

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  • 1Institute of Pediatrics and Neonatology, Fondazione IRCCS Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Mangiagalli e Regina Elena, University of Milan, Milan, Italy. roggero@unimi.it


The aim of the present study was to evaluate changes in body composition in 48 preterm infants in relation to protein and energy intakes from term up to 3 months of corrected age, using air displacement plethysmography. Protein intake (grams per kilogram per day) was negatively associated with percentage of fat mass at 1 month of corrected age. The high-protein-intake group showed greater gain in lean body mass gain than did the low-protein-intake group. This finding suggests that during the first month of corrected age, high protein intake results in a significantly different weight gain composition.

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