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What's the Big Deal About Breastfeeding?

Benefits Continue Throughout the Years

Researchers are discovering that breastfeeding has long-term benefits as well. Studies have shown that compared to formula-fed infants, breastfed children:
  • Have fewer dental cavities
  • Are less likely to develop juvenile, insulin-dependent diabetes
  • Have a lower risk for developing certain childhood cancers
  • Are less likely to be obese later in childhood
  • Have lower blood pressure
  • Have a reduced risk for heart disease
  • Develop fewer psychological and learning problems.

There Are Even Benefits for Mom

There are countless benefits for the breastfeeding newborn, but don't forget about the benefits for mom! Breastfeeding is a bonus for mom's health as well. Studies have indicated that breastfeeding can reduce the risk for osteoporosis later in life. This research has shown that bone mineral density is replenished and even increased after lactation. Breastfeeding can also decrease the risk for developing breast cancer, uterine cancer, and ovarian cancer.
In addition, women who breastfeed are able to burn calories at a very high rate, which can help them drop those pregnancy pounds quickly. Also, one of the hormones produced while breastfeeding (oxytocin) helps the uterus to return to its normal size more quickly.
There are also emotional benefits that occur for many mothers while breastfeeding. The ability to produce all of the nutrients your baby needs can provide a strong psychological connection, which can help reduce stress and anxiety. The bond that is created between a mother and her nursing infant is not one that can be duplicated emotionally, psychologically, or on many other levels.

And There's More -- No Preparation, Easy to Digest, and Economic

Obviously, a benefit to breastfeeding is convenience -- no bottles to prepare, no formula to mix, and no heating up bottles. Breast milk is also easier for many babies to digest than formula, particularly those who are premature. Because many of the formulas are made from cow's milk, they can be hard for some newborns to digest.
Cost also comes into play. Breastfeeding is cheaper than buying formula, and may help to prevent medical costs due to its benefits of fighting off diseases and infections.
7 Easy Tips for Starting Solids

Breastfeeeding Overview Information

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