Why Breastfeeding is Best for Babies

Why Breastfeeding is Best for Babies

The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding until your baby is 6 months old, with continued breastfeeding and appropriate complementary foods up to the age of two or beyond. Not only is breastfeeding the best source of nutrition for your baby, but there are also advantages for you. Read on to know why you should choose to breastfeed your baby.

Why is Breast Milk so Special?

It’s a unique nutritional source that is easy to digest and provides the perfect balance of protein, fat, carbohydrates, and nutrients to promote the growth and development of your baby.

In the first few days after giving birth, your body produces a special kind of breast milk known as colostrum. Thick and yellowish, colostrum is very nutritious and is rich in antibodies that help your baby fight off infections and bacteria. It also helps your baby’s digestive tract develop, helping it prepare to digest breast milk. After a few days, your breast milk comes through, which is runnier than colostrum, and whiter in color.

Breastfeeding not only provides your baby with tailored nutrition, but it’s available on-demand, day or night, and it’s free!

The health benefits go well beyond convenience and cost, however, and will have a far-reaching impact on both you and your baby long after your breastfeeding journey has ended.

Breastfeeding Benefits for Babies

  • Lower rates of SIDS in the first year of life (an effect that becomes even stronger when breastfeeding is exclusive).
  • Lower postneonatal infant mortality rates (a reduction of approximately 21% in the US).
  • Less risk of a baby developing eczema, asthma, and food allergies later in life.
  • Slightly enhanced performance on tests of cognitive development.
  • Lower incidence of infectious diseases, such as diarrhea, pneumonia, ear infections, respiratory tract illnesses.
  • Improved dental health with less risk of tooth decay.
  • Reduction of the risk of obesity later in life when you exclusively breastfeed for at least 4 months.
  • Lower rates of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, lymphoma, leukemia, and Hodgkin disease in older children and adults.
  • Breastfeeding also exposes your baby through the milk, you’re producing to the varying tastes and flavor profiles of the foods you eat, which can influence food acceptance and preferences when they begin to eat solids.

Health Benefits of Breastfeeding for Moms

  • A unique and powerful physical and emotional connection between you and your baby. Breastfeeding is the one parenting duty only a mom can do.
  • Non-verbal communication and bond with your baby that only grows to support an ever more intimate and effortless mutual exchange. Especially if you stay present while nursing with lots of touching, talking, singing, and eye contact.
  • Stimulation of your body to produce antibodies in your milk which in turn helps your baby stay well or recover faster when he’s sick.
  • Help with your return to your pre-pregnancy weight by increasing your energy requirements, promoting the mobilization of fat stores, and quickens your uterus to contract to its pre-pregnancy size.
  • Lower risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer.
  • Potentially lower risk of hip fractures and osteoporosis in the post-menopausal period.
  • Delays the return of your menstrual cycle, which will help maintain your iron status.

If you have any questions about breastfeeding, please let us know in the comments!

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7 Surprising Facts You May Not Know about Infertility

facts about infertility

Never-ending costs, raging hormones, and disappointment, that is what almost every couple with infertility issues has to face with. Sadly, infertility affects between 80 to 100 million couples worldwide. Whether you’ve just started trying to conceive (TTC) or already had trouble with it, infertility is scary. The more you know about infertility, the better prepared you are to deal with it. So, here are 7 surprising facts you may not know about infertility.

Infertility is More Common than You Think 

An estimated 1 in 8 couples (or 12% of married women) experience trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy. While many couples believe they are alone, it is actually a very common issue. For couples experiencing infertility issues, there are many medical options available to assist and help deal with the emotional stress associated with not sustaining a pregnancy.

Infertility Does Not Only Affect Women

Although traditionally regarded as a female problem, malefactors affecting fertility are just as common. And, it’s often denied or neglected due to a variety of reasons. The reality, however, is that the female partner only accounts for these issues about one-third of cases. Infertility affects men and women equally, with the combination of both partners accounting for the remainder. Like all things in a relationship, getting pregnant is a joint effort. Also, the cause for difficulty trying to conceive can be attributed to either partner involved. There is never a need to place blame or feel guilt when such situations arise. Instead, it is best to work together to come up with a plan to overcome the obstacles in place. So, the goal of having a family can be accomplished.

The good news! Although sperm factors are often irreversible, it will be possible for most men to assist in conception via assisted reproductive technologies like IVF and ICSI!

Not Everyone Pursues Treatment 

It can be difficult to accept that you have a problem. On top of that, the financial costs that come with it can be out of reach as they may not be covered by health insurance. It is a common reason for why only 44% of women with infertility have sought medical assistance. However, of those who seek medical intervention, and only around 65% give birth.

Sometimes, It Just Takes Time

After a couple of months of trying to conceive, it is easy for many couples to get discouraged if they are not seeing any results. This is especially true for young couples who feel that their level of health should make it a breeze. After years of using contraceptive methods, it can be easy to become discouraged if results are not immediate. Particularly living in a world where we’ve grown accustomed to instant gratification.

The fact is that only 60% of couples are able to conceive after 6 months of trying without any medical assistance at all. Well, human body is still a mystery! And, there is a wide array of factors that contribute to fertility. A lack of ideal conditions in the early stages of trying does not mean that a couple won’t be able to conceive naturally without assistance.

Being Over 35 Does Not Equate With Infertility

Age is probably the most common reason most people think about when it comes to infertility. On top of that, as women age, there is a tendency to believe that women over 35 have less of an ability to become pregnant. Well, it does influence your chances of getting pregnant as well as the success of most fertility treatment programs.

However, while aging is a natural cause of infertility, the chances of that will actually affect your fertility is not that significant. Between the ages 30-40, 70 to 90 percent of women still have the ability to conceive. This is an assuring fact for women who may have found the right time to start a family later in life, as medical assistance may not be necessary regardless of their age.

Reasons for Infertility Can Remain Undiagnosed

In most cases, known factors contributing to infertility are detected and diagnosed through a range of tests. However, in roughly 30% of cases, due to the unavailability of tests to certain parts of the reproductive process, the reasons for infertility still remain undiagnosed. Almost all couples can finally have their babies after treatments. But, in some cases, the costs, unavailability of specific treatments, and skilled professionals may prevent appropriate interventions.

Stress Can Interfere with Fertility!

Whether it’s emotional or physical, stress can interfere with normal ovulation because the brain controls the process of ovulation. And, it can switch the reproductive system off if circumstances are deemed to be unfavorable for healthy reproduction. So, don’t overthink and stress yourself out too much! There is always a solution to every problem.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments!

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