YOUR HEALTH: Breastfeeding benefits for moms
ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) - From a lower risk of asthma to fewer ear infections, breastfeeding offers many health benefits for babies. But choosing to breastfeed can also help mothers.
A new study out of Yale adds to growing research showing breastfeeding may prevent diabetes in moms. Scientists compared mice that nursed and those that didn’t. They found the mice that did not lactate had fewer insulin-producing cells in their pancreas, which could lead to a higher risk for type two diabetes.
Other research has shown mothers who breastfeed have a lower chance of developing breast cancer, ovarian cancer, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, arthritis, and postpartum depression.
“It’s the most natural thing that you can do for your child. It’s the healthiest choice that you can make for your child and for the mom,” said Jennifer Foster, IBCLC.
Breastfeeding also produces oxytocin, which helps a woman’s uterus contract to its pre-pregnancy size. And it can burn around 500 to 700 calories a day.
Dr. Karen Elkind-Hirsch, director of scientific research at Woman’s Hospital-Baton Rouge, says it can help diabetic moms lose weight and keep diabetes in check.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for about six months and then as a supplement to food until children are 12 months or older.
A study published in the Journal Pediatrics estimated that if 90 percent of US families followed breastfeeding guidelines for six months, the U.S. would save $13 billion a year due to reduced medical and other costs.
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