This month is designated as National Nutrition month. Therefore, it is fitting to discuss how breastfeeding your baby can be beneficial to a woman’s health. Breastfeeding, at times, heavily focuses on the benefits for the baby and typically we know it helps with a mother’s weight loss! Weight loss is great and a great reason to breastfeed, but let’s dig a little deeper. Breastfeeding assists with healing after pregnancy, meaning the uterus contracts faster to return to its original size sooner. Additionally, breastfeeding can be a natural form of “birth control” for women in the first few months post-partum. This is achieved only when the mother is breastfeeding on demand throughout the day and more specifically throughout the night. Breastfeeding also has been shown to decrease the risks of moms being diagnosed with breast cancer, ovarian cancer and type II diabetes. These benefits of course are most prevalent in mothers who breastfeed for one year or more.
As we all know, becoming a parent can be an exciting but stressful time. Did you know that moms are more likely to be in a better mood when they breastfeed? Caring for someone other than yourself or tending to a spouse is much different when a person is completely dependent upon your care. However, mothers that breastfeed are said to be much happier. The hormone oxytocin plays a tremendous role in the birthing of a child and it is still a critical component once the child is born. The connection from baby to breast releases this hormone allowing a mother to feel more at ease during and after a feeding session. There is no question that breastfeeding is the most amazing and best way to nurture and feed your baby. There should be satisfaction in knowing not only am I protecting my child, I am also helping to protect myself.