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Breast-feeding Remains Extremely Beneficial August 20, 2010

FOR MORE INFORMATION, contact Rebecca Sylvester at 706/828-2394.

Breast-feeding Remains Extremely Beneficial

(AUGUSTA, GA. August 18, 2010) – Breast-feeding is one of the most natural and beneficial acts a mother can do for her child, yet in today's modern society, breast-feeding is often thought of as unnecessary. Not so, says Beth Barranco, a registered nurse and University Hospital’s WAGT Healthy U correspondent.

Breast-feeding is extremely important because the antibodies that protect an infant at birth are exclusive to mother's milk, she explained. “The benefits are beyond belief. There is no other single action where a mother can impact the present and future health of her baby.”

In fact, early breast milk, or colostrum, is often called "liquid gold," she said. “It's the first breast milk that you make during pregnancy and just after birth. This milk is very rich in nutrients and antibodies to protect your baby.”

Breast milk also:

  • Reduces the risk of childhood diabetes
  • Protects against allergies, asthma, ear infections and respiratory illnesses
  • Protects against gastroenteritis (stomach infections)
  • Reduces the risk of chronic constipation, colic and other stomach upsets
  • Reduces the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
  • Reduces the incidence of childhood obesity

There are also benefits to breast-feeding mothers including:

  • Decreased risk of post partum depression
  • Promotion of weight loss
  • Reduced risk of osteoporosis and bone fracture
  • Reduced risk of breast, ovarian, cervical and endometrial cancers

Also, recent studies have shown that if 90 percent of mothers breast-fed for at least 6six months, nearly 1,000 deaths among infants could be prevented and the U.S would save $13 billion per year in medical care costs, Ms. Barranco said.

She admits that breast-feeding can be challenging at times, especially in the early days, but trained lactation consultants can help mothers find ways to make breast-feeding work for them.

For more information on breast-feeding or to inquire about lactation consulting services, contact ASK-A-NURSE at 706.737.842.

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