Think formula and breastfeeding are pretty much the same for your baby? Think again! The benefits of breastfeeding are for everyone in our society, but the breastfeeding benefits for your baby alone should convince any mom that it is at least worth a good effort to at least try it!
The many benefits are NOT exaggerated and are well-documented in studies. Even formula advertising must say that “breast is best” and mom’s are always looking for formula that is closest to breast milk. These are some of the top reasons why (with citations at the end if you want to read the studies and details.)
Top Benefits of Breastfeeding for your Little One:
* Breastfed babies are not so sick! Research shows that breastfed infants have fewer and shorter episodes of illness.
* Human milk is best for human babies! (Cow’s milk is best for baby cows!) Your breast milk is the most natural food and most nutritious way to encourage your baby’s optimal child development.
* Colostrum is nature’s laxative! Colostrum (the first milk from your breast) is a gentle, natural laxative that helps clear out your sweet baby’s intestine, decreasing the chance for jaundice.
* You get a smarter kid! The nutrition provided by breast milk benefits your child’s IQ. Tests show that breastfed babies have higher IQ scores throughout childhood and even into adulthood!
* Secure and happy baby. The close contact encouraged by breast-feeding offers babies greater sense of security and encourages bonding with their mommy.
*A recent study shows that they are also better off as adults with lower risk of heart disease than their bottle-fed peers.
* Fewer braces? Nursing is actually best for baby’s teeth and oral development. Baby’s oral muscles, facial bones, and optimal dental development are encouraged by the process of breastfeeding.
* It appears to reduce the risk of obesity.
* Help from allergies. Breastfeeding protects against the development of allergies in some children.
* Protection against disease. Breastfeeding helps the baby’s immune system mature, protecting the baby in the meantime from many types of infections. (I learned this first hand when my oldest was a pretty sick newborn. The doctors were not worried because she was “safe” from some diseases that they didn’t even test for. Why? “Because breastfed babies don’t get those diseases…” Awesome!!!)
* Research shows that breast milk increases the effectiveness of immunizations, increasing the protection against polio, tetanus, and diphtheria through the vaccines.
* Nursing offers protection against developing many chronic diseases including inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, and some childhood cancers.
* The benefits of breastfeeding appear to last for years even after the baby has been weaned even into adulthood!
Children who are NOT breastfed have an increased the risk of:
—Gastrointestinal diseases and diarrhea
—Certain respiratory infections
Nursing longer has benefits, too. Find out the benefits of extended breastfeeding here…
* Learn the advantages of breastfeeding for employers.
* Learn how breastfeeding reduces cancer risks!
* Learn how breastfeeding saves you money!
* The WHO Breastfeeding Page also gives the World Health organization’s policies and information on the benefits of breastfeeding.