Breastfeeding is the natural way to nourish a baby, but that does not mean it comes easy. Most women have challenges with breastfeeding and wonder if they are making enough breast milk. This can be difficult because women do not visually see how much milk the baby is drinking, thus, it is difficult to figure out if enough milk is being produced.
It is estimated that 5% of women are physically unable to produce enough breastmilk to feed their babies and less than 5% of women experience lactation failure. With this said, most new mothers do make enough milk for their baby and this should not be a major concern with breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding is best for the baby and the mother, it is a great source of nutrition, with the perfect combination of protein, fat, and carbohydrates the baby needs to grow. Yes, breastmilk has the perfect macronutrients for the baby to grow, but it also has millions of live cells that include immune boosting white blood cells, stem cells, and bacteria to help aid in organ development. Breastmilk also includes growth factors, vitamins and minerals, antibodies, long chain fatty acids, oligosaccharides, and amino acid, which are all important factors in your baby’s development.
All mothers want to make sure their babies are the healthiest they can be, but most mothers do not realize that a crucial decision, such as breastfeeding can affect their baby both now and the rest of their lives. Breast-fed babies usually live a healthier life with less incidence of chronic illnesses, food allergies, asthma, eczema, Type I and Type II diabetes, and much more that could lead to hospitalization and other health complications.
• Breastfed babies have a higher level of beneficial gut bacteria and healthier growth patterns than babies who are not breastfed.
• Breastfed babies have a lower rate of wheezing, which is one of the most common reasons infants are hospitalized or receive medical care.
• Breastfed babies have a lower risk of developing asthma, because of their strong gut microbiota. Formula-fed babies have a weaker gut, which can cause gut dysbacteriosis that results in a chronic inflammatory respiratory disorder, such as asthma.
• Breastmilk is unique to each mom and baby to benefit their individual needs
• Breastmilk is concentrated with bacteria that colonize the infants gut help setting the course for the baby’s growing immune system and metabolism
• Babies who are exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months have fewer ear infection and respiratory illnesses.
For information on breastfeeding, contact your local WIC agency:
Carson City Health and Human Services WIC
900 E. Long St., Carson City
Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to noon and 1-5 p.m.
Douglas County WIC clinic
1524 Highway 395 North
Monday- Friday 8 a.m. to noon and 1-5 p.m.
For additional resources and information about Carson City Health and Human Services programs and services, check out our website at www.gethealthycarsoncity.org, “Like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cchhs, follow us on Twitter @CCHealthEd, call us at (775) 887-2190, or visit us at 900 E. Long St. in Carson City.