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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

How important is breast milk and delivery method to a newborn’s health?

How important is breast milk and delivery method to a newborn’s health? | Public Radio International“We
expected there to be a difference between the exclusively breastfed
babies and the exclusively formula-fed babies in terms of their gut
microbiome composition, but what we weren't sure about was whether the
combination-fed babies would be somewhere in between or if they would
look more like the exclusively breastfed babies or the formula-fed
babies in terms of their gut microbiome composition,” says Madan. “We
were a bit surprised to find out that babies fed both breast milk and
formula had gut microbiome that resembled that of the babies that were
fed exclusively formula, and that exclusive breastfeeding was associated
with a rather unique gut microbiome composition.”

It’s no secret
that there are profound short- and long-term health benefits to
breastfeeding babies. But Madan and her colleague Anne Hoen, assistant
professor of epidemiology and of biomedical data science at the Geisel
School of Medicine at Dartmouth College, are hoping to discover what the
exact mechanisms behind the health benefits of breast milk exposure
might be.

“We're just starting to understand, with research like
ours, some of the mechanisms behind why the biology of breast milk
exposure is important,” says Madan. “Our study today is simply defining
what exposures shape the microbiome in an infant’s gut in a healthy
Breastfeeding Benefits for Mom and Baby

Breast milk provides the ideal nutrition for infants. It has a nearly perfect mix of vitamins, protein, and fat -- everything your baby needs to grow. And it's all provided in a form more easily digested than infant formula. Breast milk contains antibodies that help your baby fight off viruses and bacteria. Breastfeeding lowers your baby's risk of having asthma or allergies. Plus, babies who are breastfed exclusively for the first 6 months, without any formula, have fewer ear infections, respiratory illnesses, and bouts of diarrhea. They also have fewer hospitalizations and trips to the doctor.
Breastfeeding has been linked to higher IQ scores in later childhood in some studies. What's more, the physical closeness, skin-to-skin touching, and eye contact all help your baby bond with you and feel secure. Breastfed infants are more likely to gain the right amount of weight as they grow rather than become overweight children. The AAP says breastfeeding also plays a role in the prevention of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). It's been thought to lower the risk of diabetes, obesity, and certain cancers as well, but more research is needed.
Benefits of Breastfeeding - Healthy Milk, Healthy Baby | NRDC

milk is a unique nutritional source that cannot adequately be replaced
by any other food, including infant formula. Although pollutants can
accumulate in breast milk, it remains superior to infant formula from
the perspective of the overall health of both mother and child.

are fragile and susceptible to disease, partly because their bodies are
not fully developed. They must be treated with special care and given
adequate nourishment. Infant formulas are able to mimic a few of the
nutritional components of breast milk, but formula cannot hope to
duplicate the vast and constantly changing array of essential nutrients
in human milk. Nevertheless, breastfeeding is often devalued, both in
the United States and abroad, and in many parts of the world it must
compete with relentless advertising by infant-formula companies.

Studies have demonstrated a number of important health benefits to breastfeeding. Among them:

  • Breast-fed children are more resistant to disease and infection early in life than formula-fed children
  • Breast-fed
    children are less likely to contract a number of diseases later in
    life, including juvenile diabetes, multiple sclerosis, heart disease,
    and cancer before the age of 15
  • Mothers who breastfeed are less
    likely to develop osteoporosis later in life, are able to lose weight
    gained during pregnancy more easily and have a lower risk of breast,
    uterine and ovarian cancer
101 Reasons to Breastfeed (ProMom)

Studies Say Breastfeeding Benefits Moms, Too (VIDEO) | Sci/Health > Health

Benefits of Breastfeeding Your Child

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