The physical, mental, and emotional benefits of breastfeeding for moms
You’ve probably heard all about the amazing benefits of breastfeeding when it comes to your baby’s health. Like providing antibodies that protect your newborn from infections, lowering his or her risk of developing illnesses later in life, and so much more.
And while anything that makes our babies grow stronger and healthier would be enough on its own, breastfeeding also has a slew of health benefits for mom.
Breastfeeding Burns Calories
In the first three to 12 months postpartum, your body burns between 300-500 calories a day producing breast milk. For many moms, this can mean an increase in weight loss without any additional exercise.
Breastfeeding Can Reduce Stress + Postpartum Depression
Let’s face it – new babies are stressful! But studies have shown that women who stopped breastfeeding early or never started breastfeeding had a higher risk of postpartum depression. What’s more, the feelings of euphoria that sometimes comes with breastfeeding due to the release of the hormone oxytocin can combat those normal feelings of stress and anxiety and help you bond with your baby.
Breastfeeding Helps Post-Delivery Healing
That same oxytocin responsible for those warm, fuzzy feelings you get when breastfeeding also stimulates postpartum uterine contractions. These contractions not only reduce post-delivery blood loss, but also help your uterus return to its normal size more quickly than if you didn’t breastfeed.
Breastfeeding Gives You Confidence
Many breastfeeding moms experience psychologic benefits such as increased self-confidence, a newfound love for their body, and a strong bond with their little one.
Breastfeeding Strengthens Friendships
Breastfeeding, like motherhood in general, is one of those life experiences that has the ability to bring women closer as friends. Having someone who understands nighttime feedings, engorgement, and the sometimes overwhelming feelings that come with breastfeeding creates a powerful connection that can last a lifetime.
Moms – what ways did breastfeeding make you feel better physically, mentally, or emotionally? Share in the comments below.