Breast milk is best for your baby, and the benefits of breastfeeding extend well beyond basic nutrition. Breast milk contains all the vitamins and nutrients your baby needs in the first six months of life, plus breast milk is filled with disease-fighting substances that protect your baby from a wide variety of illnesses.
That’s one reason the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months (although any amount of breastfeeding is beneficial). Scientific studies have shown that breastfeeding is good for the mother’s health, too!
The following are some benefits of breastfeeding:
- It releases bonding hormones.
Breastfeeding releases the “bonding hormone” oxytocin. The same hormone that’s released when you hug or kiss a loved one, oxytocin provides a feeling of closeness between you and baby.
- Reduces the chance of cancer for both babies and moms
On top of giving the baby a healthy start with your breast milk’s antibodies, which help protect baby from the cold and flu, breastfeeding may even boost his ability to fight off more serious stuff, including cancer. In addition, studies show moms who breastfed were 1.5 times less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer than those who didn’t.
- It’s convenient.
Breastfeeding allows you to give out the perfect portion of ready-to-serve milk at baby’s beck and call. No boiling or mixing necessary.
- Save you a ton of money, too.
Believe it or not, formula and supplies for just six months can cost upwards of $1,500. On the other hand, breast milk is free.
- Breastfeeding lowers the risk of obesity.
Not only will breastfeeding make your child leaner and healthier, it will help reduce the risk that your child will suffer from upper respiratory infections, ear infections, and the like.
- Allergies and ailments are lowered
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, food allergies, eczema and asthma are less common in babies breastfed for at least four months.
- Helps mom lose that baby fat.
There are certain fat stores that go on your body during pregnancy that are destined to be for breastfeeding. Breastfeeding helps tap into those stores and reduce the fat deposits laid down in pregnancy
These are just a few of the many reasons why breastfeeding is best. When you choose to breastfeed, you make an investment in your baby’s future. Breastfeeding allows you to make the food that is perfect for your baby. Your milk gives your baby the healthy start that will last a lifetime.