There’s nothing more miraculous and beautiful then the birth of a newborn baby. A sweet little innocent being, brand new to this world, totally dependent on his or her parents for every need. All momma wants for her baby is perfect health, happiness and success in life. Breastfeeding is one of the most important things to achieve just that. When you choose to breastfeed, you are making an important investment in your baby’s future. A mother’s milk is the perfect food for baby, nothing even compares.
15 Benefits of Breastfeeding
There are so many benefits to breastfeeding and most likely many more that we have yet to discover. When you nourish your newborn with mother’s “liquid gold”, your baby gets much more than just superior nutrition. Baby will get all of the necessary vitamins and nutrients to support a rapidly growing body and the addition of beneficial disease-fighting substances that will protect your baby from illness. And momma benefits too!
- Your breast milk is specifically designed for your baby. Your body produces secretory IgA for protection against specific pathogens that you’ve come into contact with and therefore get passed on to protect baby.
- Antibodies in breast milk give baby’s immune system a boost, possibly protecting baby against certain childhood cancers.
- Studies show that breastfeeding protects baby against developing certain disorders that develop later in life like type 1 and 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and inflammatory bowel disease.
- Immune factors in breast milk protect against allergies. Scientists think this is because Secretory IgA provides a layer of protection to baby’s intestinal tract, preventing inflammation and leaky gut that can lead to food allergies.
- A study at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences showed that breastfed children have a 20% lower risk of dying between the ages of 28 days to one year old versus formula-fed babies.
- 17 studies published in the American Journal of Epidemiology showed that breastfed babies have a reduced risk of becoming overweight or obese later in life.
- Breastfeeding may lower your baby’s risk of SIDS.
- Your milk is readily available without the need for bottles, nipples or the need to sterilize or warm anything.
- Breastfeeding may boost your baby’s IQ.
- The oxytocin released during breastfeeding brings mother and baby closer, allowing baby to feel safe, secure and comforted.
- Breastfeeding lowers your risk of postpartum depression significantly.
- Nursing releases the hormone oxytocin in the body, which promotes relaxation and nurturing for better bonding.
- Nursing helps you get back to pre-pregnancy weight by making the uterus contract and go back to it’s original smaller size, not to mention all the extra calories your body burns when breastfeeding!
- Numerous studies have shown that the longer a mother breastfeeds, the lower her risk of getting certain cancers like breast and ovarian. It is believed to be because of the body’s lower production of estrogen from breastfeeding.
- Save loads of money since it’s way cheaper than formula!
Breastfeeding is ideal but it doesn’t always come natural for all mommas. There can be problems with latching, instances where mother and baby are separated for extended periods like work travel and issues with low milk supply. Keep at it, and seek the help of a lactation consultant if needed. Baby has never done this before and first time moms neither, so be patient, be persistent and baby will benefit greatly.
In the case of low milk supply, try these yummy lactation cookies that have ingredients like oats, flax and brewers yeast that are well known foods for boosting milk supply.