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Importance of Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding is the finest gift any mother can give her infant. However there are millions of infants dispossessed of this advantage. This is because of many factors (physical, social or economical) which forces mothers to use formula milk. But the fact remains that the breast milk is very important because it is the most suited food to the child. What mother′s milk contains is still researchable but it can be definitely said that it is a complete food for the infant.
In simple words, breast milk is the milk produced by a lactating female. But besides this simple perception, it is a more complex thing, technically. Breast milk is known by different terms depending on the time of production and composition. The first milk that is produced is precisely the best for the infant. It has a yellow tinge and is thick in consistency. Breastfeeding should commence as soon as possible after giving birth.
The first milk is loaded with the immunities which protects the little one. It also acts as a natural laxative which helps the infant in passing the first stools.
The experience of breastfeeding is special for so many reasons. It creates a blissful bonding with your baby. The varying composition of breast milk keeps pace with the infant′s growth and changing nutritional needs. It gives protection against ear infections, respiratory illnesses, pneumonia, bronchitis, kidney infections and septicemia. It also gives protection against meningitis, botulism, childhood lymphoma and decreases the risk of tooth decay.
Breastfeeding is a learned skill. It requires persistence and practice. For some women, the learning stages can be annoying and painful. And some situations make breastfeeding even harder, such as babies born early or health problems in the mother. But mothers who breastfeed have a lower risk of some health problems, including breast cancer and diabetes.
Benefits of breastfeeding for the infant:
- Breastfed infants develop higher IQ′s, and have improved brain and nervous system development.
- Reduced risk of heart disease later in life.
- Increased bone density.
- Breastfeeding plays an important role in the emotional and spiritual development of babies
- Antibody response to vaccines is higher.
- Decreased risk for vitamin E and Iron deficiency anemia.
- Less risk of childhood obesity.
Benefits of breastfeeding for the mother:
- Reduced risk of anemia.
- Protection against osteoporosis and hip fracture later in life.
- Reduced risk of mortality for women with rheumatoid arthritis which is associated with total time of lactation.
- Helps the mother′s body return to its pre-pregnancy figure faster.
- Helps the uterus contract after birth to control postpartum bleeding.
Some people say that the formula milk is tremendously convenient - especially for working women - but it is definitely not healthier. Breast feeding was, is and will always be the best food one mother can give her infant. So try to be there at home and close to your baby for at least the first three to four months. Also the new mother′s should take care of their diet. The diet for breast feeding mom’s must include plenty of vegetables, green leaves and fruits. This along with whole grains and legumes and foods high in calcium to provide all the different nutrients required in a lactating mother’s diet.