Breastfeeding. Such a controversial topic, but why? Why is there so much negativity and stigma placed around this absolutely natural process? One common answer is that a woman’s breast has been so sexualized that many look past what it was originally intended for, providing nutrition to an infant. I can’t believe that I felt the need to title my post as I did, but it’s a real issue. Someone is always offended.
As a young, childless adult I don’t have experience with the act of breastfeeding. I have often wondered and even been asked if I would ever consider it. My answer is always, “Of course, I’ll try it!”. I’m very open to the idea and I realize that not every individual is. Let me just provide a bit of information on what I have found to be beneficial reasons in favor of breastfeeding:
First of all, as a parent you want a healthy baby. Well, breastfed babies are less likely to become sick. There are many essential nutrients and antibodies within breastmilk that help support the immune system. Not only do they get sick less, they also are healthier in general. They have lower rates of asthma, obesity, diabetes, and other health risks.
Another positive to breastfeeding is the recovery process. The uterus will begin to retract to its original size quicker, which is important for the mother’s health and well-being. The release of hormones helping to contract the uterus also helps the woman lose weight quicker, (something most women are in search of), due to the excessive amount of calories being burned.
Breastfeeding saves money. You read that right, it $ave$ money. By reducing, or completely eliminating the amount of formula that is purchased a family can accumulate over one thousand dollars in the first year alone. Not only that, by foregoing formula, you are allowing your baby to get the added fats and nutrients into their diet that they might not otherwise have.
Let’s not forget about the daddies, though. They can still be involved in the process. A woman can pump and store her milk for later usage. The father is then able to bottle feed the infant, while still ensuring the nutritional value.
One nation in particular has led extreme efforts in promoting breastfeeding, while also working to control the aggressive marketing of formula companies. That is the Philippines. They are one of the leaders in international efforts to promote and protect this right of women. They have invested so heavily in caring for formula-fed children suffering from diarrhea that the World Health Organization (WHO), has estimated their annual spending to reach nearly $23.5 million. The 88% of Filipino babies that are breastfed at birth bring the nation in at one of the highest. Their battle, and the battle of those all over the world is paying off.
Here is where to locate some of the information I have included in my post above: