It is no secret that breastfeeding has some really great benefits for babies. There is reason behind the saying ‘breast is best.’ But not only is it beneficial for baby, it also has some surprising benefits for mom, too! Check out the ways you and your baby will both be benefiting on your nursing journey.
Breastfeeding creates a bond right from the start. Your baby is solely depending on you for nourishment and your body is providing it. While this is all taking place, baby in nestled in close to mom, receiving mom’s body heat to regulate his or her own temperature, and baby is feeling back at home with the sound of your heart beat close by.
Because breastmilk is digested faster than formula, breastfed babies will need to eat more often. This also helps increase the bond between mom and baby as there are lots of late night rocking chair sessions together.
DECREASE RISK OF CANCER FOR MOM
Women who breastfeed have a decreased risk for breast, cervical and endometrial cancer. The risk decreases with length of breastfeeding journey as well as the amount of children that are breastfed.
HEALTH BENEFITS FOR BABY
Babies that are breastfed are less likely to develop asthma or allergies later on in life, as well as less likely to develop obesity and diabetes. Breastfed babies are also less likely to battle ear infections. Breastfeeding also helps reduce the risk for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome by almost half.
CONTRACTS UTERUS TO SHRINK FASTER
All postpartum moms will experience the uterus contracting after birth, but postpartum moms that breastfeed will likely experience the contractions more often, therefore speeding up the process of shrinking the uterus back down to size. Because the uterus will be shrinking faster, postpartum bleeding will decrease faster for breastfeeding moms. So while the cramping isn’t the most fun, think about the benefit of not dealing with the lovely postpartum pads as long and focus on that.
Did you know it’s possible for a breastfeeding mom to burn up to 600 calories a day! This also includes moms who are exclusively pumping. The body is hard at work to produce milk for your baby. Be sure to fuel it back up with extra calories and plenty of water to keep up with the calories you are burning. However, while some breastfeeding moms lose the baby weight faster or even lose beyond their baby weight, some moms hold onto 10 or so pounds due to breastfeeding. But if I were you, I would embrace the extra 600 calories and ignore the scale. When else is life are you going to burn 600 calories while sitting down?
MILK CATERS TO BABY’S NEEDS
Seriously. It is so amazing! Your body knows exactly what your baby needs. When you baby is sick, breastmilk will adapt to the needs of your infant and increase illness specific antibodies to help baby fight off whatever bug they are dealing with. This also applies when mom is fighting off a bug. Breastmilk will give the baby more antibodies to increase immunity so baby is less likely to get sick.
Breastmilk will also help regulate baby’s temperature. I will never forget the time we were out at a hot summer parade with my 3 month old baby. I went to nurse her and some of the cold milk dripped on me. I was shocked that my milk was able to change to meet her needs to even cool her off in the heat. Impressive.
CONVENIENCE FOR ALL
No bottle, no problem. Breastfeeding is amazingly convenient, because your boobs are always with you! There is no preparing bottles, warming up or checking temperature. With breastfeeding, everything is set and ready to go right away. This is especially nice with baby is HUNGRY right then and there and you can accommodate quickly. And because most states have laws protecting breastfeeding rights in public, you can conveniently feed your baby wherever you want.
Breastfeeding is definitely the less costly choice when compared to formula. While there may be pump supplies needed, breastfeeding is still very cost effective. Formula costs can add up quickly and if your baby needs a special formula, the costs are even more high.
Breastfeeding has a lot of great benefits for moms and baby. While these benefits are pretty amazing, don’t feel down if you are struggling with breastfeeding or you choose to not continue to breastfeed. Any bit of liquid gold, even if it is just for a few days, is beneficial for baby. It is always important to do what is best for you and for your little one.