Breastfeeding the baby or not is the decision that solely depends on the choice of the mother and her circumstances. However, it should be kept in mind that there are definitely some benefits associated with it owing to which it is highly recommended. It boosts the health of the mother and the baby as well.
Let us have a look at the benefits linked to breastfeeding:
Benefits of Breastfeeding:
Rich source of Proteins:
A thick yellowish fluid is produced in the breasts during the first few days of birth, it is called Colostrum. It is rich in proteins.
It provides important antibodies and nutrients:
Breast milk has important nutrients associated with it. Not only this, the first milk that is produced in the mother’s breast has important antibodies. The most talked about and crucial is IgA. The infant’s body produces this antibody but in lesser quantity. As the days pass by, the body starts producing more of it. However, when the baby is breastfed, he/she gets this IgA directly from the breast milk.
This IgA antibodies protect the child from various illness caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi etc. It acts by sealing the respiratory and intestinal tract of the infant thus preventing the germs from entering the body and the bloodstream.
It protects the child from various Infections:
The child is safeguarded against variety of diseases of the gut, middle ear, respiratory tract, intestines and other allergic diseases.
Breast milk helps in a healthy weight gain:
Breast milk is associated with a balanced health and minimizes the chances of obesity. It is said that breastfed babies have higher amounts of friendly gut bacteria that play a crucial role in fat storage.
Some studies suggest that breastfed babies are likely to be smarter than their other counterparts:
Breastfed babies are found to have more intelligent score than the formula-fed ones. Also, there are positive effects on their long-term brain development.
Weight control for Mothers:
Mothers who breastfeed the babies tend to manage their weight in a balanced way. Breastfeeding requires lot of energy from the mother’s body. She undergoes various hormonal changes which affect her weight pattern as well. The first 3 months may not show a positive result however after that, a significant weight loss is observed in the mothers as well.
Help the uterus to contract easily:
During pregnancy, the uterus expands. During labor, Oxytocin hormone is released that actually helps to deliver the baby easily. After this process, uterus goes back to its original size. This process is termed as involution.
The hormone Oxytocin enhances in quantity during breastfeeding thereby helping the uterus to contract faster and reduce bleeding too.
Helps the mother to fight back Depression:
Studies have shown that women who breastfeed are less likely to develop postpartum depression. Oxytocin has anti-anxiety effects. It signals the brain to develop relaxing attitude.
It protects the mother from diseases like cancer:
It is estimated that women who breastfeed the babies are less likely to be effected with breast and ovarian cancer. Such women are more resistant to diseases like high blood pressure, arthritis, high blood fats, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Time for boiling water and mixing the formula food is saved:
Definitely, one doesn’t have to worry about boiling the water, sterilizing the bottles and mixing formula milk into it.
Every woman has her own choice to breastfeed or not. Sometimes, certain circumstances do not allow the mother to enjoy this beautiful phase. But if possible, a mother should try to breastfeed the baby at least for 6 months. If she can continue for another 6 months, nothing like it.
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