Breast-Feeding - Benefits of Breast-Feeding
Breast-feeding is a natural way to
nourish your baby. It benefits both you and your baby. But it's your decision whether to breast-feed.
Benefits for the
Breast milk provides your baby with
vitamins and minerals for optimal growth and development. It also has the needed proteins,
fats, and other substances for growth.
Breast-feeding provides health benefits for your baby, such as:
To compare, baby formula does not help protect a baby
from infections and other health problems.
Benefits for the mother
Soon after your baby is born,
breast-feeding helps your body recover from the stresses of pregnancy, labor,
and delivery. Breast-feeding also stimulates your body to release
oxytocin, which helps your
uterus contract, bleed less, and return more quickly to its prepregnancy size.
Breast-feeding also lowers
your risk for certain health problems, such as breast cancer or diabetes later on.1, 5
You may find that
losing weight is easier
with breast-feeding. But weight-loss rates after delivery vary among women.
Feeding your baby milk at
the breast is convenient, because you have a food
source that is ready at all times. You
don't have to do anything to prepare.
It's your decision
Breast-feeding is a personal choice. How you feed your baby is
your decision. Your thoughts and feelings about it are an important part of the
Should I Breast-Feed My