The Benefits of Breastfeeding: Did You Know?
Globally, less than 40 percent of infants under six months of age are exclusively breastfed and only 14.8 percent breastfeed beyond the six-month mark. Adequate counseling and support are essential for mothers and families to initiate and maintain optimal breastfeeding practices. Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital is leading efforts in educating moms regarding the benefits of breastfeeding.
Dr. Berens Discusses Breastfeeding on Great Day Houston
8 Facts Moms Should Know About Breastfeeding
Pamela Berens, M.D., an OB/GYN affiliated with Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital and a leading national expert on breastfeeding, shares 8 facts moms should know about breastfeeding:
- Breastfed children are less likely to contract a number of diseases later in life, including juvenile diabetes, heart disease in later life, and cancer before the age of 15.
- Breastfeeding decreases the likelihood that the child will become obese.
- Breastfed babies are less likely to have allergies later in life.
- There is a decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer for moms who breastfeed.
- There is a delayed return of periods for moms who breastfeed.
- Mom can burn 600 calories or more a day. Perfect for losing baby weight!
- Nursing triggers the release of the hormone oxytocin, which relaxes both baby and mom.
- Baby formula can costs hundreds of dollars per month.
A sense of confidence is produced in mom by providing all the nutrients her child needs. The bond of a nursing mother and child is stronger than any other human contact. This feeling sets the health and psychological foundation for years to come.
As one of only 90 hospitals in the country selected to be a part of the “Best Fed Beginnings” program, Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital offer moms the opportunity to breastfeed immediately upon birth instead of being separated for four or more hours. Additionally, bedside lactation consultants are there for the duration of the mom’s hospital stay.