Breastfeeding and its nutritional value for a child

Breast milk is rightly called ‘liquid gold’ as its benefits to baby are more than just good nutrition. When a woman becomes pregnant, her body begins to prepare for breastfeeding. Milk comes 2 to 5 days after the baby is born. The first milk that the body produces is orangish-yellow in colour, called colostrum. Colostrum is full of all nutrients that a newborn needs, and also contains many substances to protect the new-born against diseases and infections. The quantity at first may seem less, but with periodic feeds it increases in volume and gradually becomes milky white transitional milk. Amazingly, breast milk changes daily and will adjust to baby’s needs throughout the period of breastfeeding. The more milk a baby takes from breast, more milk is produced. Supply of milk changes according to baby’s demand. This is why most women are able to produce enough milk to breastfeed twins or triplets.

Breastfeeding is like a hike through the woods: Natural, but not always simple. In fact, it can be challenging, breath-taking, and full of unexpected perils. Apollo Cradle‘s team of lactation experts conduct exclusive workshops to help mothers prepare for breast feeding.

Feeding  a baby with mother’s milk has many health benefits:

  • Breast milk has all nutrients, calories and fluid that a baby needs to be healthy.
  • It has factors that ensure the best development of baby’s organs.
  • It contains many substances that help to protect the baby from many health issues such as ear infections, diarrhoea, pneumonia, wheezing, and bronchitis, bacterial and viral infections.
  • It is easier for the baby to digest.
  • The milk is always ready at the right temperature and need not be prepared.
  • Evidence suggests that breastfeeding may help to protect against sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
  • Most importantly, breastfeeding provides warmth and closeness to the baby. The physical contact helps to create a special bond between mother and baby.

Benefits to the Child Later In Life:

  • Fewer dental cavities throughout their life
  • Decreases risk of childhood cancers and some cancers in adult life
  • Chances of developing heart disease and diabetes is less
  • Cognitive development is better in breastfed children
  • Breastfed children develop fewer psychological, behavioural and learning problems, as they grow older
  • Breastfed babies are confident, more mature in behaviour, are assertive and secure within themselves, as they grow.

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