Many health organizations recommend breastfeeding as the best choice for babies. This includes the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Medical Association (AMA), and the World Health Organization (WHO.) The AAP recommends that babies should be exclusively breastfed with no formula, juice, or water for 6 months, and should continue to be breastfed even after the introduction of foods through the first year of their lives. Here’s why:
Breastfeeding provides ideal nutrition for babies.
Breastfeeding has the perfect and natural mix of vitamins, proteins, and fat your child requires to grow. These nutrients also support organ function and help build your baby’s teeth and bones. Breast milk is also more easily digested than formulas by babies, so as a result, they’ll likely have fewer cases of diarrhea or constipation.
Breast milk helps fight infections and protects babies from diseases.
Breast milk contains antibodies and other germ-fighting components that are passed between the mother and baby to strengthen the immune system. In fact, breastfed babies tend to have fewer infections and hospitalizations than formula-fed infants. Breastfeeding lowers the risk of asthma, allergies, diabetes, leukemia, and more!
Breastfeeding is convenient.
Breast milk doesn’t cost a single cent and requires no supplies unless you’re planning on pumping it into bottles! The cost of formula quickly adds up compared to breast milk, and since breast milk helps fight infections as mentioned before, parents can save money on trips to the doctor and hospital. There’s also no need for last-minute or late-night runs to the store for formula as breast milk is always fresh and available!
Breastfeeding grows the relationship between mother and baby.
The relationship is rooted in the interactions of breastfeeding as it allows for consistent skin-to-skin contact. This is a great way to set aside time to bond with your baby and can enhance the emotional connection between the mother and child. It also leads to increased calmness in both, supporting the wellness of body, mind, and spirit.
And it’s beneficial for mom, too!
On top of burning calories, breastfeeding also stimulates the uterus to contract and return to normal size and reduce uterine bleeding, creates less of a risk for postpartum depression, and creates naturally soothing hormones that promote relaxation. Finally, breastfeeding reduces the risk of diseases such as diabetes, ovarian cancer, breast cancer, high blood pressure, and more!
To learn more about breastfeeding or for more newborn care tips, Folsom OB/GYN is here to help! Call and make an appointment today! 916-983-3500.