It is a personal decision to choose between breastfeeding your newborn baby or to bottle-feed. It is an important decision that new mothers need to make. However, breast milk the best thing a mother can give to her baby. It does benefit not only the newborns but also the mothers.
Top benefits of breastfeeding for both mothers and newborns
Breastfeeding reduces the chances of your child wearing glasses in future. Children who are breastfed as infants have better eyesight than those who are formula-fed. A high concentration of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which is a fatty acid in breast milk is the reason for better eyesight. The natural antibiotic found in breast milk is good for fighting eye infections.
Immune system boost
Babies who are well breastfed (for four months at least) are less prone to eczema, asthma and food allergies. This is due to the first milk that is produced after birth. Breast milk is high in protein and low in fat. This has a positive effect on the newborn’s lymphoid tissue and immune responses. It also makes babies resilient to bacteria, germs, and viruses.
Reduces the risk of cancer
Nursing mothers are encouraged to breastfeed to reduce cancer risk in themselves and their babies. Studies show that breastfeeding is associated with pediatric cancer and protection increases with the duration of exclusive breastfeeding.
Prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
Breastfeeding your baby for at least six months may help lower the risk of SIDS. Breastfed infants easily wake up from sleep, in turn, they are protected against SIDS. Breastfeeding also helps to build infants immune system which protects them from infections.
Breastfed babies have a greater IQ over the formula-fed babies. These cognitive benefits are linked to DHA and arachidonic acid. Breast milk also has specific protein that promotes brain development.
Baby’s growth and development
Breast milk is highly rich in fats, vitamins, carbohydrates and proteins that help in the proper growth and development of your baby. The hormones, leukocytes and antibodies present in breast milk also make it the best
food for the newborns. Proteins in breast milk have properties that protect against infections and are highly digestible. The iron and calcium in breast milk, needed for healthy bone development, are easily absorbed as well.
Exclusive breastfeeding is essential for your baby during the first six months. It has long-lasting effects on your newborn’s development and overall health.