Breast milk provides the ideal nutrition for a newborn baby and plays a vital role in providing them with early immunity. It also has a lot of benefits for the baby like prevention of allergy, asthma, diabetes, obesity with age. However, very few people are aware that breastfeeding has a plethora of benefits for maternal health. Read on to find out the benefits breast milk provides to the mother.
The reason doctors recommend breastfeeding is that it can improve the new mother’s health in multiple ways-
- Benefits for the uterus – Breastfeeding leads to the release of a hormone called oxytocin in the mother that helps the uterus go back to its pre-pregnancy size. It also reduces bleeding from the uterus in the immediate period after pregnancy.
- Improves emotional health -Breastfeeding promotes skin to skin touch which brings closeness and enhances bonding between mother and the baby. Also, research has shown that breastfeeding significantly reduces post-partum depression and promotes emotional stability. Breastfeeding releases oxytocin, which helps relieve stress and fosters love, trust, and a strong emotional bond between a mother and baby.
- Acts as temporary contraception - Lactation and breastfeeding induce the release of prolactin, a hormone that prevents ovulation and thus stops the release of eggs. This ensures no fear of becoming pregnant even without using contraceptives. It also helps space out the birth of your babies.
- Promotes shedding of pregnancy weight- To create milk for the baby, the mother’s body needs a lot of extra calories, which uses the extra fat gained during pregnancy to fuel the energy demand. So, Breastfeeding helps in your efforts to lose all the extra weight you gained during pregnancy.
- Reduced cancer risks – Research has established the fact that nursing the baby for at least 6 months, can reduce the risk in mother of ever developing breast cancer or ovarian cancer very significantly.
- Better bone health - Nursing a child can increase calcium absorption in your body and hence can increase your bone mineral density. This leads to a lesser risk of developing osteoporosis.
- Prevention of type 2 diabetes – Lactation prevents insulin resistance and stabilizes blood sugar levels stable. This reduces the risk of developing diabetes in the future.
- Saves a lot of money – Formula feeds are quite expensive and predispose your child from getting an infection. This can cost a lot of expense, whereas breastfeeding is free and in return prevents infection, thereby saving money.
Breastfeeding has immense health value for both baby and mother. So go ahead and do it!