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8 Benefits of Breastfeeding Your Baby

I am happy to offer a guest post from Milk n Mamas Baby on my  blog today. While the benefits of breastfeeding are many, and I have written about them before, it is always good to get another perspective.

Breastfeeding can be time consuming and difficult for some women, so it is no surprise that new mothers may end up feeding their child formula. Though bottle feeding is not necessarily harmful to a baby, it is typically not the ideal solution.

8 Breastfeeding Benefits

Keep reading to find out the eight reasons why mothers should try to breastfeed their child.

1. Make Mealtime Easier

It can definitely take some time to get the hang of breastfeeding, but once you and your baby have figured it out, it is far easier. Instead of bothering with proper sterilization, mixing formula, and finding the right temperature for a bottle, all you have to do is pull your shirt aside. This is especially helpful when your baby is waking up hungry in the middle of the night.

2. Save More Money

If your family is trying to save money, breastfeeding is definitely the way to go. According to La Leche League, the average cost of formula is somewhere between $1,600 and $5,900 per year. Saving thousands of dollars each year will let you and your family put that money towards more important things.

3. Lower Your Child's Infection Risks

When you breastfeed your baby, your milk is sharing important antibodies with your infant. This is extremely important because your child is less likely to get sick while breastfeeding. Researchers have found that infants who breastfeed exclusively have far fewer ear infections, fevers, colds, diarrhea, and trips to the doctor overall.

4. Lose Pregnancy Weight Quicker

In order to make milk, your body needs calories for energy. This means that any excess fat or the food you eat will go towards creating breastmilk. Mothers who are trying to get back to a healthier weight after being pregnant find that breastfeeding reduces the need to diet rigorously.

5. Boost Your Oxytocin Levels

Breastfeeding regularly ensures that a mother's oxytocin hormone levels stay nice and high. This helpful hormone encourages the uterus to shrink back to its normal size after childbirth, and it also reduces postpartum depression risks.

6. Keeps Your Child Well Nourished

Unlike formula, your breastmilk is custom made to meet your child's nutritional needs. Depending on your infant's age, your breastmilk may change to provide more antibodies, calories, or anything else your baby needs.

7. Avoid Menstruation Longer

Women who breastfeed do not typically ovulate and menstruate normally. Taking a break from your menstrual cycle is definitely convenient, and less periods over a woman's lifetime reduces her risk of breast and ovarian cancer. Though it is not 100 percent foolproof, breastfeeding also reduces the chances of getting pregnant right away.

8. Enjoy Higher Mother Child Intimacy

Breastfeeding is a great time to strengthen the special bond you have with your baby. Some research has suggested that the increased eye contact, physical touch, and socialization of breastfeeding can boost brain development. This may explain why breastfed children tend to have higher IQs.

As you can see, there are several great benefits for families who breastfeed. Taking a little extra time and effort can ensure that you and your baby are as happy and healthy as possible. Fortunately, breastfeeding is becoming more and more common, so many workplaces and public areas are making and effort to accommodate breastfeeding mothers.