In the past decade, information about the benefits of breastfeeding for you and baby have revolutionized the way moms think about how they nurture their babies.
Benefits of Breastfeeding for Baby
Breast milk evolves as your baby grows. For the first 3 to 4 days, your breasts produce a thick yellow milk called colostrum. It’s a concentrated milk with antibodies and proteins to protect your baby’s newborn intestines and provide a natural immunization.
Transitional milk occurs after colostrum and lasts for approximately two weeks. The content of transitional milk includes high levels of fat, lactose, water-soluble vitamins, and contains more calories than colostrum.
Mature milk is the final milk that is produced. 90% is water, which is necessary to maintain hydration of the infant. The other 10% is comprised of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats that are necessary for both growth and energy.
- Breast milk has equal amounts of protein, carbohydrates and fats to meet your baby’s needs.
- The fat in breast milk is good and rich in omega fatty acids, DHA and ARA, which help to support healthy brain and eye development during the first few years of life.
- The hundreds of nutrients found in breast milk are the healthiest for your baby’s digestive system.
- Unlike proteins found in regular cow’s milk and most formulas, the proteins in breast milk are naturally gentle for digestion.
- Breast milk safeguards your baby.
- Breast milk helps protect babies against food allergies, protein intolerance, and sensitivity.
- Healthy bacteria (bifidobacteria and lactobacilli)—called probiotics—in breast milk have a positive influence on digestive functions and immune support.
Benefits of Breastfeeding for You
There is no formula in the world that will ever nourish a baby as well as breast milk does. The benefits far outweigh the challenges that come with it and you could say that breastfeeding is not only natural, but it is in fact necessary.
- Breastfeeding diminishes future health risks
- Women who breastfeed have a decreased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, breast cancer and ovarian cancer later on in life.
- Breastfeeding hormones reduce recovery time.
- The act of breastfeeding triggers the release of oxytocin, which helps the uterus to contract and return to its pre-pregnancy size in less time.
- Breastfeeding also triggers improved blood clotting, which reduces the amount of postpartum initial bleeding and decreases menstrual blood loss during the first few months after childbirth.
- Breastfeeding allows you to bond with your baby.
- You will find quiet moments and places for a positive experience.
- Relax with your baby and observe their communication.
- Skin-to-skin and eye-to-eye contact provides a unique closeness.
- Inexpensive, Convenient and Naturally Made.
- Requires little to no equipment.
- Can be done almost anywhere and anytime.