Health Benefits of Breastfeeding

Updated: Sep 12, 2020

Breastfeeding impacts the health of both the mother and child in positive ways. Breastmilk contains antibodies, antioxidants, and enzymes. It contains the nutrients infants need for healthy growth and development. The contents within breast milk changes according to the needs of the baby as they grow. Breastfeeding also promotes cognitive development in children. One of the long-term benefits research of breastfeeding includes reducing the baby’s risk of contracting particular health problems later in life, such as asthma, Type I and II diabetes and obesity. Infants who are breastfed are at lower risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Breast milk contains substances that promote sleep and calmness in babies. As a result, mothers can get more rest, too! Another benefit of breastfeeding mothers can reduce their risk of ovarian cancer, osteoporosis, and heart disease. Breastfeeding helps the mother heal faster during postpartum, encouraging her uterus to return to pre-pregnancy size quicker.

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Photography by: Ramona Peterson

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