Overfeeding a baby often causes discomfort in the baby from not
being able to digest all of the breast milk or formula properly. Although
crying from discomfort is not
colic, it can make crying more frequent and more
intense in an already colicky baby. When fed too much, a baby may also swallow
air, which can produce gas, increase discomfort in the belly, and lead to more
crying. An overfed baby also may spit up more than usual and have loose stools.
Babies give cues during feeding that indicate how hungry they are.
Pay attention to these cues to help determine when your baby has had enough to
A baby who is hungry will latch on to the breast
or bottle and suck continuously.
A baby who is getting full during
a feeding will take longer pauses between sucking.
A baby who is
full will turn away from the breast or bottle and not want to suck.
The amount of food each baby needs varies. Young babies usually
do not take more breast milk or formula than they need. In general, your baby
should seem healthy and happy and have good muscle tone, healthy skin, and good
The following table gives the number of ounces that a baby needs to
take with each feeding according to his or her weight. Remember that this is
only an average and that every baby is different. Call your doctor if you have any concerns.
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.