Breastfeeding is convenient, costs nothing, and most importantly, provides both mother and child numerous health benefits. If you are currently expecting and trying to decide if breastfeeding is the right option for you, the following facts can give insight into the many advantages that this natural and healthy practice offers. Should you have further questions, consult with your maternity hospital about your breastfeeding options.
Breastfeeding provides vital nutrients and antibodies for your newborn’s health.
Breast milk is the perfect sustenance for newborns. Both early breast milk, also known as colostrum, and mature breast milk have the exact amounts of antibodies, fat, sugar, water, protein, and other nutrients that babies need to grow and build their immune systems. Moreover, breast milk is typically easier than formula for newborns to digest.
Breastfeeding offers protection for mothers against disease and depression.
Breastfeeding can be just as beneficial for the mother. Studies have shown that women who breastfeed have a lower occurrence of ovarian cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes, and postpartum depression than mothers who do not breastfeed. Breastfeeding also offers mothers much needed bonding time with their newborns. In addition, it saves valuable time and money that would otherwise be needed to buy and prepare formula.
Breastfeeding reduces your child’s risk for future illnesses.
While breastfeeding gives growing babies the nutrients they need now, it can also safeguard them from becoming sick in the future. In comparison to breastfed newborns, formula-fed children have been found to suffer more frequently from respiratory infections, asthma, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. Other studies have further shown that breastfed children typically have a lower occurrence of type 1 diabetes and childhood leukemia. Though breastfeeding may not always be an option for all women, new mothers should consider the many benefits of breastfeeding whenever it is possible.
West Hills Hospital & Medical Center provides maternal and child healthcare for patients in the greater West Hills, California region. If you are an expectant or new mother, call us today at (818) 676-4321 to learn more about our certified lactation consultants and breastfeeding classes.