6 Benefits of Breastfeeding

Sunday, November 25, 2012

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Breastfeeding is good for your baby and for you. And you can breast feed your baby even if you smoke.

Here’s why—breast feeding:

  1. Provides your baby with the nutrients and antibodies to protect your baby and help him or her grow and develop. 

  2. Protects your baby from diseases, like ear infections and diarrhea.

  3. Lowers your baby’s risk of diabetes and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

  4. Lowers your risk for diabetes, as well as breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and depression.

  5. Can help you form a special bond with your baby.

  6. Can help you lose weight during the first year after your baby is born.

It’s your call whether you want to quit smoking, but the benefits of breastfeeding outweigh the risks of not doing it if even if you continue to smoke.

Even if you don’t quit smoking, it’s still important to breast feed.  But here’s two simple rule to keep in mind: 1) Don’t smoke in the house or car and 2) Don't smoke while you’re feeding your baby. She or he will inhale your smoke or could get burned by the cigarette.

Talk to your doctor and visit www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding for more information about breastfeeding.

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