Benefits of Breastfeeding For Mom and Baby

February 21, 2012

There’s no doubt that breastfeeding can be a challenge, but understanding the benefits of breastfeeding can help motivate moms to provide the best nutrition for baby. So, read our list of health benefits and share it with your fellow moms and moms-to-be. We all can spread awareness about the incredible nutritional advantages of breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding Benefits for Baby:

  • Right after delivery, your colostrum helps gently clear your baby’s intestine, decreasing the chance of jaundice.
  • Breastmilk contains antibodies, enzymes and white blood cells that protect your baby from viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections and illnesses during breastfeeding. These benefits may even continue after your baby is weaned.
  • Breastmilk encourages the growth of probiotics in the baby’s digestive tract, reducing the risk of diarrheal diseases.
  • Breastfeeding supports brain development, improving IQ scores later in life.
  • The immune components in breastmilk provide protection against milk allergy, eczema, and wheezing early in life.
  • Breastfeeding may prevent obesity and encourage a healthy lifestyle as your child grows older.
  • Breastfed babies are less likely to suffer from ear infections, vomiting, diarrhea, pneumonia, urinary tract infections, or certain types of spinal meningitis.
  • Breastfeeding lowers the risk of SIDS.
  • Breastfeeding facilitates a special bond between mom and baby.
  • The sucking motion of breastfeeding strengthens oral muscles, facial bones, and supports ideal dental development.
  • Breastfeeding increases the effectiveness of immunizations such as polio, tetanus, and diphtheria vaccines.
  • Breastfed infants are more protected against chronic conditions like celiac disease, inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, and some childhood cancers.

Breastfeeding Benefits for Mom:

  • Breastfeeding may reduce the risk of breast and ovarian cancers in mothers.
  • Oxytocin levels increase while breastfeeding, stimulating postpartum uterine contractions and minimizing blood loss.
  • Many breastfeeding moms report an increase in weight loss during the first 3 to 12 months postpartum.
  • Breastfeeding moms can experience psychological benefits such as increased self-confidence and a stronger bond with their little one.
  • Exclusive breastfeeding can delay the return of fertility, working as a natural contraceptive.
  • Breastfeeding releases hormones that promote bonding and maternal instincts. The release of oxytocin while breastfeeding encourages a more relaxed demeanor and may prevent the onset of postpartum depression.

What do you think is the most important benefit of breastfeeding? Share in the comments below.

10 thoughts on “Benefits of Breastfeeding For Mom and Baby

  1. Products are very beautiful but price are too much high for 1 basepump of medela is taking the price in INR 1875 It means $37.5 and for harmony they are taking INR 3990 it means $79.8 In India delievery charge is equal price of harmony so you can think how much price are increasing. In india MEDELA peoples are saying that as per WHO guidelines they want to decrease the death rasho of newborn but ilke this they are increasing the death rasho so company should do somthing company has to control on price

  2. In my opinion, immunity from diseases and brain development are most important benefits for the baby. And for moms the lowered risk of cancers and psychological benefits like bonding with baby n depression reduction.
    Moreover breastmilk is such a proportionate liquid gold for life of baby that u merely wanna waste it as a mother..

    • I would like to share your article on my blog. I am a huge supporter of breastfeeding and have offered help to mothers who struggle in the beginning. I watched it do amazing things for my first baby, who I breastfed for 15 months. She has yet to have an ear infection and is now 2.5 years old. I also lost all 40 pounds of my pregnancy weight by the time she was 5 months. It is truly liquid gold and there is just no substitute.

      • Hi Courtney – Feel free to share our blog. We always want to spread awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding. It’s great to hear that our products were so helpful in your breastfeeding journey.

  3. My youngest is 4 months old today and, same as my older two kiddos – now 6 and 4, is exclusively breastfed. In my opinion the biggest benefits of nursing are 1) The bond created between mom and baby – there’s nothing like that one-on-one time with your baby providing a brand of nourishment that can’t be duplicated or offered by anyone else, and 2) the myriad of mental and physical health benefits to both Mom and baby. While my kids were all jaundiced and have had multiple ear infections resulting in tubes in one kid, none have ever had a serious gastrointestinal illness or a major colds. Any illness they’ve ever had has been minor and short-lived. And I myself am hardly ever sick when I’m nursing. Scientists are discovering additional benefits of breastmilk every day.

    I encourage pregnant family and friends to try to nurse their babies, but I also know how difficult it can be and that it’s just not for everyone. It is definitely worth it though if Mom can stick it out – the benefits are infinite.

    • Thanks for sharing. The benefits of breastfeeding are truly incredible. It’s wonderful that you encourage other moms to give breastfeeding a try.

  4. Actually, with the release of oxytocin while pumping/breastfeeding, I felt more agitated and not as relaxed as my previous state. I wish I could feel happier when doing so. I tried my best to relax but it was a very difficult journey. I found out that I have a condition called D-MER when my dopamine levels appear to drop rapidly when I have a let down. It also felt very different from PPD. I had a brief period of PPD when I seriously thought I wasn’t going to.

    D-MER to me feels like that feeling (“It’s a Monday tomorrow and I have to work…..” dreadful feeling). Every single time I pump or breastfeed. Ruined my bonding experience with baby. But then it goes away when I finish the session.

    PPD to me feels like I have suicidal thoughts. This kind of stuff doesn’t go away, only time and support helped me here.

    Recognizing my symptoms and be more informed about it helped quite a bit.

    • Hi Sara, every mom’s experience is different. We’re glad that you were able to recognize your symptoms and become more informed. Thanks for sharing your story. -Kathy

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