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Breastfeeding vs. Formula Feeding (Part 2)

mother’s milk

Free. Breast milk doesn’t cost a cent, while the cost of formula quickly adds up. And because of the immunities and antibodies passed onto them through their mother’s breast milk, breastfed infants are sick less often than infants who receive formula. For example, researchers have determined that infants who are breastfed exclusively have fewer episodes of ear infections. That may mean they make fewer trips to the doctor's office, which equates to fewer co-pays and less money doled out for prescriptions and over-the-counter medications.

Likewise, women who breastfeed are less likely to have to take time off from work to care for their sick babies.

Different tastes. A nursing mother will usually need 500 extra calories per day, which means that she should eat a wide variety of well-balanced foods. This introduces breastfed babies to different tastes through their mothers' breast milk, which has different flavors depending on what their mothers have eaten.

Convenience. With no last-minute runs to the store for more formula, breast milk is always fresh and available. And when women breastfeed, there’s no need to warm up bottles in the middle of the night. It’s also easy for breastfeeding mothers to be active — and go out and about — with their babies and know that they'll have food available for whenever their little one is hungry.

Obesity prevention. Some studies have found that breastfeeding may help prevent obesity.

Smarter babies. Some studies suggest that children who were exclusively breastfed have slightly higher IQs than children who were formula fed.

"Skin-to-skin" contact. Many nursing mothers really enjoy the experience of bonding so closely with their babies. And the skin-to-skin contact can enhance the emotional connection between mother and infant.

Beneficial for mom, too. The ability to nourish a baby totally can also help a new mother feel confident in her ability to care for her baby. Breastfeeding also burns calories and helps shrink the uterus, so nursing moms may be able to return to their pre-pregnancy shape and weight quicker. In addition, studies show that breastfeeding helps lower the risk of breast cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, and also may help decrease the risk of uterine and ovarian cancer. In one long-term study of the National Institutes of Health Women’s Health Initiative, women who breastfed for at least 7 to 12 months after giving birth had a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

Source:kidshealth.org


Other links:

Staying Healthy During Pregnancy (Part 1)

Staying Healthy During Pregnancy (Part 2)

Staying Healthy During Pregnancy (Part 3)

Weight loss should not be hurried in new moms

Omega-3 improves baby brain power

Pacifiers prevent breastfeeding success

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