As a new mom breastfeeding is now a big part of my life. It can be hard, especially at the beginning (and still is some days), but there are resources available to help. Did you know that last week was World Breastfeeding Week? I saw a lot of information on the internet about it, but I didn’t have a chance to blog about it. So, in honor of World Breastfeeding Week (a little late) here are some facts about breastfeeding. These are courtesy of Texas Department of State Health Services campaign called “Breastmilk. Every Ounce Counts.” For more information check out their website www.breastmilkcounts.com.
1. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months and continued breastfeeding for the first year and beyond as long as mutually desired by
mother and child.
2. Studies about infants provide evidence that breastfeeding can decrease the incidence or severity of conditions such as diarrhea, ear infections and bacterial meningitis. Some studies also suggest that breastfeeding may offer protection against Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), diabetes,
obesity, asthma and other diseases. – AAP
3. Having more babies and breastfeeding longer can reduce a woman’s risk of breast cancer.– American Cancer Society
4. Research indicates that breastfeeding can reduce a mother’s risk of several medical conditions, including ovarian and breast cancer. – AAP
5. Increased breastfeeding also has the potential for decreasing annual health costs in the U.S. by $3.6 billion and decreasing parental employee absenteeism, the environmental burden for disposal of formula cans and bottles, and energy demands for production and transport of formula.
– American Academy of Pediatrics
6. Formula costs between $900 and $4,700 the first year. Additional food costs for a breastfeeding mother run approximately $120 per year.
7. Texas law protects a mother’s right to breastfeed her child. That means
at the park, in the mall, at the grocery store, at a restaurant, in a movie theater—any public place.
8. There are many benefits to breastfeeding, for mom and baby.
•• Saves money in formula and healthcare costs
•• Provides a special bond between mom and baby
•• Burns up to 600 calories a day
•• Makes diapers less stinky
•• Protects mom against cancer and diabetes
•• Reduces babies’ risk of infections and stomach problems
•• Reduces babies’ risk of allergic reactions and asthma
•• Reduces babies’ risk of SIDS
•• Reduces babies’ risk of childhood leukemia
•• Provides baby with the most easily digested food
•• Promotes babies’ healthy growth and development
•• Reduces babies’ risk of obesity and diabetes
•• May give baby a higher IQ—especially preemies
•• Transmits mother’s immunities to baby