Posts Tagged ‘breastfeeding’

Breastfeeding Benefits for Mommy & Child

Breastfeeding is looked upon as an act that creates an early, bond between mommy and baby.  While bonding may be the leading reason many women choose to do it, breastfeeding offers several other healthy benefits for both mother and child. In addition to the obvious benefits of developing a strong bond between mother and child, check out these bonus benefits breastfeeding and breast milk can offer to both baby and mommy alike.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Baby

  • Breast milk is a naturally ideal form of nutrition for your baby, which means it’s much easier to digest than formula, which is made with proteins from cow’s milk. Babies’ stomachs are forced to adjust in order to properly digest formula.
  • A mother’s breast milk—and the nutrients it contains—changes as the baby grows. A noticeable change in the content of breast milk even occurs after the third day of birth providing the proper nutrients, water, fat and protein needed for the baby’s continued growth.
  • Infections and diseases that can potentially impact an infant early on can be prevented via the consumption of a mother’s breast milk. The provided hormones, cells and antibodies protect babies from illness. It’s a fact that among formula-fed babies, ear infections and diarrhea are more common than they are among babies who are breastfed. When it comes to a baby’s immune system, the unique protection provided from a mother’s breast milk cannot be beat.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Mommy

  • First things first, breastfeeding can save you money. On average, formula and feeding supplies can cost over $1,200 every year, and that number can increase depending on how much your baby eats. Also, due to the major health benefits sustained by breast-fed babies, it can save cost on healthcare, as the prevalence with which they develop illness is lessened.
  • Breastfeeding is linked to a lower risk of the following health issues in women:
  1. Type 2 diabetes
  2. Breast cancer
  3. Ovarian cancer
  4. Postpartum depression
  • Ladies, here’s another super bonus: breastfeeding promotes postpartum weight loss. It’s been shown that mothers who breastfeed have a significantly larger reduction in hip circumference and more fat loss by one month postpartum when compared to formula-feeding moms. With breastfeeding, you can almost guarantee an earlier return to pre-pregnant weight.

If you would like more information on proper care and feeding methods for your newborn, feel free to visit us at the Emory Johns Creek Hospital Birth Center. We offer classes that range from “How to Prepare for Labor” to “Basic Breastfeeding”.  And if you’re still planning for your delivery, come take a tour of our birth suites! The birth center at Emory Johns Creek Hospital is designed to cater to every need of the expectant mommy.

Related Resources

Childhood Obesity – The Battle Begins at Birth

Breastfeeding Lower Risk of ObesityWe have known for years that breast is best when it comes to feeding our babies, but now, its health benefits are being promoted as a tool in the battle against obesity. According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a baby’s risk of becoming an overweight child decreases each month he or she is breastfed.

“Breastfeeding has been shown to be a protectant against childhood obesity,” says Maeve Howett, PhD, APRN, CNP-Ped, IBCLC, assistant clinical professor at Emory’s Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing and president of the Southeastern Lactation Consultants Association. “When a child is breastfed, he is almost eight times less likely to be obese as a child.”

One in five preschoolers is overweight, with half of those being obese. According to recent studies, breastfeeding offers the best protection against obesity when it is practiced exclusively – no formula or solid foods – for three months and then continues for the baby’s first year with the addition of appropriate foods at ages four to six months. Though science is not yet conclusive as to exactly why breastfeeding is such a powerful deterrent of obesity, theories abound.

“It may have something to do with satiety influences – that feeling of fullness so that you turn away from the table,” says Howett. “When children are breastfed, we don’t know what goes in. It is hard for us to measure, so a mom will feed her baby until the baby pulls away and is sleepy and satisfied. The baby gets to determine how full he is. When you’re bottle-feeding a baby, you do tend to encourage that last drop. It’s really important to understand that if the baby gets to determine satiety, they get to determine their feeling of fullness. That might be a behavior that continues throughout childhood.”

Emory University Hospital Midtown supports our patients in their decision to breastfeed. Expectant mothers can take a prenatal breastfeeding class. If you have questions or feedback, you can either leave them for us in the comments below, or call our breastfeeding support services at 404-686-2883 for answers to any questions regarding breastfeeding.