importance of breastfeeding: breastfeeding vs formula
Babies, Breastfeeding

Importance of Breastfeeding: Breastfeeding vs Formula | Parenthood4ever

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Everyone has its own opinion on the eternal and quite controversial topic: Breastfeeding vs Formula. But there always remain two sides:

  • “OK to formula milk” – why would I and baby suffer if I don’t have enough breast milk?
  • “Big NO to formula milk” – it is the best my baby can deserve. I must try harder.

The importance of breastfeeding also changes through culture and place you are in. Russian-speaking nations make things more complicated, but only because they want to make sure that they have done everything right. So they would analyze the problem in detail before coming up with a decision (totally my case). As many Russian-speaking friends I have, the majority prefers breastfeeding newborn up to two years and more if it is possible. They strongly believe there are tons of benefits of breastfeeding as it relates to strengthening the baby’s immune system.

WHO (World’s Health Organization) agrees with that. I must tell they have got a point. On the other hand, English and Argentinian moms tend to be more simple. Fewer worries more happiness, after all, there is common sense and doctors who advise you. Of course, there are situations when mom cannot provide breast milk for numerous reasons and infant formula is inevitable and a must. But what to do if you have enough breast milk supply?

Breast milk vs Formula

7 True Breastfeeding Facts That Will Motivate You

1. Your breast milk is designed for only one human being on Earth

Why is breastfeeding important? I strongly believe breastfeeding moms is a title, after all, they have got something unique incomparable to anything else that is intended only for one human on Earthyour baby (of course, we do not exclude twins, triplets and babies that were born at the same time). So why not use it?

2. Breast milk is a baby’s primary source of development

One friend of mine, who happened to be a lactation consultant in Prague, told me: “Think about it this way: breast milk is a baby’s primary source of development. He is getting all the necessary breastfeeding nutrition with it. While infant formula is a supplement that is prescribed to a baby in case of absence of breast milk. Basically, it is a medicine. Now, why would you like to give medicine for no reason or without experiencing serious condition?”

3. Exclusively breastfeed infants for their first six months and continue breastfeeding up to the age of two years or beyond

In the past, women had to work a lot. They wouldn’t have any maternity leave. It simply didn’t exist. According to my English friend, whose mom is a lactation consultant: “This is why it is not so common breastfeeding baby up until now, but finally we are getting there.” In the former Soviet Union, there were guidelines saying you should give juice and yogurt to a four-weeks-old baby. Crazy, right?

But how long to breastfeed? Nowadays, “WHO recommends mothers worldwide to exclusively breastfeed infants for the child’s first six months to achieve optimal growth, development, and health. Thereafter, they should be given nutritious complementary foods and continue breastfeeding up to the age of two years or beyond.”

4. Mother’s body can change milk’s immunological composition

Besides, did you know that mom’s body can change the milk’s immunological composition after just ONE feed? The benefits of breastfeeding for baby are gigantic! There is no other product in the entire world that can do so. Breast milk not only has everything baby needs at the beginning of his life, but it also protects him. First off, it prevents the baby from the mom. If breastfeeding mom feels sick or she ate something bad, breast milk will not allow any germs to get in.

5. It is safe breastfeeding your baby when you have a contagious illness

According to the Babycenter: “It’s safe to breastfeed your baby when you have a common illness, like a cold or the flu, because these germs don’t pass into breast milk. Even mastitis (an infection in the breast) doesn’t pose any risk to your baby.” So, if you feel sick, the best thing you can do for your baby is to continue to breastfeed. When you have a contagious illness such as a cold, flu, or other mild viruses, keep in mind that your baby was exposed to the illness before you even knew you were sick. Though it is fair to note that breastfed babies should get vitamin D from their birth, and vitamin A and C after they reach the age of six months. On the other hand, formula milk already contains the necessary vitamins in composition.

6. Your breast milk will be loaded with antibodies and fat if baby gets sick

Secondly, if a baby gets sick, it will load milk with antibodies and fat to help fight the baby’s illness. So the breastfed baby recovers from illness much quicker than the one having the infant formula. How does it happen? It is believed that mammary gland receptors interpret the “baby spit backwash” for bacteria and viruses, and they detect if there is anything wrong with your little one. Isn’t it what we call a miracle?

Until now science didn’t answer all questions regarding the content of breast milk. It just changes daily based on signals from a baby. So, breast milk or formula?

7. Breast milk is a potent medicine

I heard quite often: “In order to be a good mom, you should breastfeed.” But breastfeeding is more than being a good mom. And breast milk is much more than food: It’s potent medicine and, simultaneously, a powerful medium of communication between mothers and their babies, called bonding.

Health benefits of breastfeeding

The advantages of breastfeeding are endless. Below are just some of them:

  • Breastfed babies don’t need to drink water, milk provides all the necessary hydration.
  • Breastfeeding leads to babies with higher IQ and lower chances of getting childhood obesity.
  • Based on recent research, Julie Mennella of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia believes that early breast milk helps babies develop their own taste preferences, as well as increase their enjoyment of particular flavors.
  • If you exclusively breastfeed the baby, you lose up to 300 calories a day. Isn’t it the easiest enjoyable fitness possible?
  • And finally, it is FREE. You never think about preparing the milk or places where to warm it up, your breast milk just comes out all ready and at the perfect temperature.

Infant formula is a healthy alternative

What about formula then? I would agree with the statement on NHS. It is believed that “breast milk is the best nutritional choice for infants. But breastfeeding may not be possible for all women. So for moms who can’t breastfeed or who decide not to, infant formula is a healthy alternative. The formula milk provides babies with the nutrients they need to grow and thrive.” In addition, surely, there are some challenges breastfeeding, such as personal comfort and space, diet maintenance, commitment on time and frequency of feedings. But on a personal note, I think it was one of the best experiences in my life.

What’s in breast milk?

Nutritionally breast milk is a complete and perfect food – an ideal combination for your baby and no one more in this entire world. Each drop of your breast milk contains thousands of beneficial components. Scientifically, we don’t know everything about this magic liquid, but the following:

  1. It has proteins, fat, carbohydrates, and nutrients;
  2. It has a variety of minerals and vitamins:
    • sodium,
    • potassium,
    • calcium,
    • magnesium,
    • phosphorus,
    • vitamins A, C, and E.
  3. DHA (an omega-3) and AA (an omega-6) fatty acids help to develop your baby’s brain and nervous system;
  4. The main carbohydrate is lactose, that provides your baby with energy and calories keeping them active 24/7;
  5. Other sugars in breast milk help to feed microbes that populate a baby’s digestive system;
  6. It has thousands of good bacteria that help your baby’s digestive system function properly;
  7. And finally, it has clear color and appearance, but a variety of aromas, flavors, and textures. They are as dynamic as mom’s diet.

Wish you to have the best breastfeeding experience!

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  1. […] is also crucial to understand the importance of breastfeeding to make sure you are taking the right […]

  2. It’s like you read my mind! You appear to know so much about this like you wrote the book in it or something. This is great blog. An excellent read. I’ll certainly be back.

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