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Benefits of Breastfeeding

Despite the existence of a wide range of milk formulas in the market today, breast milk remains to be the most recommended way of feeding the newborn. Breastfeeding is cost effective because it is all natural. It is readily available whenever your baby needs it. Countless of benefits can be acquired from it and it is beneficial for both the mother and the infant.

Hormone called Oxytocin

Right after giving birth, breastfeeding stimulates the release of a hormone called Oxytocin. Oxytocin causes the uterus to contract, thus, reducing the risks of bleeding or hemorrhage. Breastfeeding has been proven to prevent certain serious illnesses too.

Reduced risk of developing certain cancers

Research has shown that breastfeeding mothers have a reduced risk of developing certain cancers that are most likely to affect women. These are the breast, ovarian and endometrial cancers. Furthermore, breastfeeding for duration of more than 8 months encourages the increase of bone demineralization and thereby preventing the development of osteoporosis.

Delay in the ovulation process

Breastfeeding can also cause a delay in the ovulation process. Because of this, it is mistakenly believed that it can prevent pregnancy. However, this is not true. Pregnancy can occur even when a woman is only breastfeeding and therefore should not be relied on as a form of contraception.

Losing weight through breastfeeding?

Some even believe that fats accumulated during pregnancy can be shed off through breastfeeding since fat is also needed for milk production. This, however, is still not thoroughly proven to be true however is presumed as possible.

Breast milk contains nutrients

It is the infant who benefits the most from breastfeeding. Breast milk contains nutrients that are beneficial. These nutrients are numerous and are well enough to sustain the baby’s needs, but the greatest thing about it is that, despite its high nutritional value, they do not cause even a slight disturbance in the infant’s kidney function.

Viruses and bacteria

Breast milk protein can easily be digested too, thereby encouraging rapid body growth. It contains a certain immunoglobulin which keeps foreign molecules including pathogens like viruses and bacteria from being absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract. It also enhances the effectiveness of leukocytes and antibodies that protect the baby from infectious organisms.

Sucking method of a baby

While babies breastfeed, they tend to pull their tongue backwards while sucking on the breast. On the other hand, they thrust their tongues forward if they’re sucking through a rubber nipple. The sucking method of a baby from a mother’s breast is said to prevent the malformation of their dental arch.

Physiological benefits

Aside from its mentioned physiological benefits for both the mother and the baby, breastfeeding is also highly encouraged to promote family bonding. It is said to cause a release of certain hormones in the mother’s body that makes her feel more nurturing towards the baby. This is quite important considering the high incidence of postpartum depression of women nowadays.

More and more women are considering the said benefits of breastfeeding due to the continued efforts of different sectors who are pushing the promotion of breastfeeding. Making a decision to breastfeed or not proves to be quite easy for mothers who are much concerned for the welfare of their child.

Related links

Breastfeeding in Public
Breastfeeding versus Bottle Feeding
Menstruation while breastfeeding
What to eat when Breastfeeding?



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