From our International Board Certified Lactation Consultants
The top 12 reasons to breastfeed:
Your baby will:
- Be getting the best nutrition available
- Be smarter
- Have a stronger immune system
- Have a lower risk of leukemia and heart disease
- Be leaner for life
- Have fewer ear infections
- Forge a stronger bond with your baby
- Have a lower risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and cervical cancer
- Lose weight faster
- Be less likely to develop osteoporosis later in life
- Avoid the expense and inconvenience of formula, which can cost $1000+ during the first year
- Know you are providing the best, most natural food possible for your baby
American Academy of Pediatrics Recommendations
The AAP recommends breastfeeding exclusively for 6 months and up to at least 1 year of age.
- Breastfeeding satisfies the baby’s emotional needs.
- Breastmilk is more digestible than any substitute.
- Pre-term breastmilk is perfect for premature babies.
- Breastfeeding protects the baby against vision defects.
- Breastfeeding results in less sick days for parents.
- In 2016, the average breastfeeding initiation rates for the USA was 81.1%.
Facts About Colostrum
- Colostrum is a yellow, sticky fluid, made in the body at 28 weeks gestation and is secreted during the first 3-5 days after your baby is born.
- It continues to be secreted in breastmilk for up to 2 weeks after delivery.
- One drop of colostrum contains approximately one million white blood cells which help to protect your baby from viruses and infections.
- Colostrum continues to offer the immunities that were available to baby via the placenta.
- It is high in protein, as well as fat-soluble vitamins and minerals.
- Colostrum contains high amount of sodium, potassium, chloride and cholesterol that are thought to encourage optimal development of your baby’s heart, brain, and nervous system.
- The yellow color of colostrum is due to B-carotene, one of many antioxidants that are present in colostrum.
- Colostrum’s natural laxative benefit encourages the passage of meconium, which reduces the risk of jaundice in babies.
- Colostrum is your baby’s “first immunizations!”
North Kansas City Hospital’s Breastfeeding Support Group meets 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Tuesdays.