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July 27, 2022 3 min read

NATIONAL BREASTFEEDING MONTH
[benefits of Breastfeeding]

Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure child health and survival. Breastmilk is the ideal food for infants. It is safe, clean, and contains antibodies that help protect against many common childhood illnesses. Breastmilk provides all the energy and nutrients that the infant needs for the first months of life, and it continues to provide up to half or more of a child’s nutritional needs during the second half of the first year, and up to one-third during the second year of life.

Breastfed children perform better on intelligence tests, are less likely to be overweight or obese, and are less prone to diabetes later in life. Women who breastfeed also have a reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancers.

Did you know that other than the physical benefits of breastfeeding for both mum and baby there are also a whole host of emotional benefits?

Benefits For Mum

  • Produce more of the hormone oxytocin & Prolactin - promotes stress reduction and positive feeling
  • increase confidence, self-esteem, and calmness.
  • No financial stress-breastfeeding is free
  • Breastfeeding makes travel easier-breast milk is always ready to go anytime and anywhere.
  • Physical and emotional bonding between mummy and baby is increased.

Benefits For Baby

  • When babies are comforted through breastfeeding, the hormone oxytocin is released
  • which helps brain growth.
  • The release of oxytocin also regulates a baby's stress hormone.
  • A baby's first loving and caring relationship help them to feel secure and form the basis for future relationships.
  • Promotes longer contact with baby, more holding/stroking. That affectionate bonding during the first years helps shape early behaviors.

For the baby breastfeeding and extended attachment to mum offers security, comfort, reassurance, and lowers stress levels. And when a baby is feeling content emotionally, it increases their brain development and forms the basis of future early behaviors.

And similarly, the hormones produced during feeding help mums to reduce the stress hormones and have more positive feelings with confidence and calmness - a useful tool in the early weeks when you are tired, overwhelmed, and in pain from birth.

Meaning a more settled and contented mummy and baby which also supports bonding. And best of all it’s all completely free and ready to go immediately when needed.

The longer you continue breastfeeding, the more health benefits you’ll enjoy.

Breastfeeding lowers your lifelong risk of heart disease and diabetes. Every extra month that you breastfeed also reduces your risk of many cancers including those of the breast, ovaries, and uterus.

Benefits for Mum

  • Lowers the risk of ovarian cancer.
  • Lowers the risk of breast cancer.
  • Lowers risk of Osteoporosis with age.
  • Lowers risk of diabetes.
  • Lowers the risk of endometrial cancers and stroke.
  • Lowers risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Lowers risk of hypertension disease.
  • Mothers get better quality of sleep due to being able to feed more quickly and the hormones released help with a faster return to sleep.
  • Stimulates the uterus to contract back to normal size and lowers postpartum bleeding.
  • Breastfeeding burns 500 extra calories a day.

Every time you have skin-to-skin with your baby or breastfeed, your body experiences a rush of the love hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin has an antidepressant effect and for as long as you continue to breastfeed, oxytocin will help you feel calm, reduce stress, and blood pressure and even raise your pain threshold. Isn’t a woman’s body amazing!


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