Benefits of Breastfeeding
Did you know August is National Breastfeeding month? The United States Breast Feeding Committee (USBC) created this official declaration in August of 2011 and set out to improve the nation’s heath by protecting and promoting breastfeeding. At the 5 year anniversary there is MUCH to celebrate! Rates of breastfeeding continue to rise and society has become a more welcome place for breastfeeding moms and babies.
Here are some amazing facts about breastfeeding…
Breast milk is an ideal baby food. Breast milk is an infant’s preferred source of nutrients. It contains easily digested protein, brain-building fats, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and immune factors.
Breastfeeding builds baby’s immune system. Breast milk contains ingredients that feed beneficial bacteria in the infant’s large intestine that promote healthy digestion and immune function.
Breast milk is adaptable. It changes in composition and quantity to address the needs of the growing infant. Now that’s smart milk!
Breastfeeding helps keep babies healthy for life. Babies who are fed exclusively with breast milk for the first 6 months of life have fewer ear infections, respiratory illnesses and bouts of diarrhea. Breastfed babies also have a decreased risk of allergies and cavities. Some studies show breastfeeding promotes a higher IQ and decreases the risk of obesity and diabetes as babies get older.
Breastfeeding creates a strong emotional connection. The bond between mother and infant can last a lifetime.
Moms benefit from breastfeeding too. Breastfeeding reduces the risk of some cancers, helps mom sleep better, improves re-mineralization of bone after pregnancy and releases prolactin, a hormone that can help a new mom cope with the changes that occur with being a new mother.
At Naturopathic Specialists we support our breastfeeding patients by:
1. Recommending supportive nutrients and herbal preparations for mom and baby.
2. Troubleshooting concerns such as deceased milk supply, cracked nipples, or mastitis.
3. Referring to lactation consultants who provide a high level of expertise and support for breastfeeding mothers and babies.
The doctors and staff at Naturopathic Specialists applaud the continued efforts of the United States Breast Feeding Council, lactation consultants, and all of the people who do their part to support breastfeeding moms and babies in our community!