Sunday, July 10, 2011

Breastfeeding highlighted this Nutrition Month

July is Nutrition Month in the Philippines and last July 1, 2011. In Cebu, it was launched by several groups led by the National Nutrition Council VII at the Event Center, SM City Cebu. The theme for this year is "Isulong ang Breastfeeding, Tama, Sapat at Eksklusibo" which promotes breastfeeding.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding from birth to the first 4-6 months of life and likewise recommends continuation of breastfeeding with complementary foods up to 2 years of age or beyond.

Unfortunately, some mothers make many excuses and others even give artificial drinks before 4 months. When I was still a medical technologist, I even saw an infant being given coffee. They probably do not know that if a baby stops suckling from a breast, that breast stops making milk which could explain why some mothers claim they are not producing milk and make it a reason why they stop breastfeeding their babies. Breastfeeding therefore stimulates milk production. Mothers who don't produce milk probably give up right away  in breastfeeding their babies.

Mother's milk and breastfeeding have many benefits.
  • Breastfeeding promotes mother-baby bonding.
  • Studies suggests it may help to dvelop the child intellectually.
  • Breastmilk is easily digested and protects against infection.
  • Breastmilk provides proper nutrition with the perfect nutrients.
  • It is a natural way of delaying a new pregnancy for mothers.
  • Mother's milk is free and does not cost a cent.
So the next time you have new mothers in the family, encourage them to breastfeed and in your own little way, you are promoting the message of this year's nutrition month.