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Benefits of Breastfeeding for Mom and Baby

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Great benefits of Breastfeeding for mom and baby

As women, we have always heard about that “breastfeeding is best for babies up to two years old”. We have heard them in commercials and read them in publications. But what are the benefits of breastfeeding? Here I will discuss the benefits for both mom and baby and will share my experiences as well.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
These Bacolod mommies have enjoyed the benefits of breastfeeding their babies. Clockwise from top left: Jessa Villanueva, Rhea Fernandez, Manilyn Perales, Trixie Abelarde, and Maricar Lo.

Breastfeeding is Not Easy for Everyone

I have to admit that breastfeeding does not come as easy and as naturally for everyone. I had my fair share of difficulties and with my first daughter Dindin, I was not able to successfully breastfeed her. She was on the breast for two months only.

With my second daughter Shane, I was able to exclusively breastfeed her. This especially happened because of the efforts of mommy breast-friends who encouraged me to keep going. You can read about my experience here: Perseverance is Key to Breastfeeding.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
My beautiful breastfeeding portrait taken by my brother, Iman Dugeno. Super love this image.

Nutrition also played a vital role in my breastfeeding journey. My tummy felt like it was an aquarium because of high volumes of liquids like soup, juices, and water. And of course, there’s seafood, like premium fish and shellfish that are supposed to encourage milk supply. Malunggay capsules were also a part of my daily intake.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Babies

In simple terms, here are the benefits of breastfeeding for our little ones.

Breast milk has everything they need.

Breast milk contains everything that your baby needs, especially for the first six months of life. The first milk (called the colostrum) that comes out of the mom’s breast is thick, rich in protein, and loaded with beneficial compounds for the baby.ย The only possible exception is vitamin D, so we would let our babies sunbathe early in the morning every day.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
Breastfeeding can be done anywhere, so your baby never goes hungry. Well, as long as you are around.

Breast milk is loaded with Antibodies.

Humans need antibodies that fight off infection. And breast milk is loaded with all that, especially immunoglobin A. This can help your baby fight off or prevent common illnesses. We have really noticed the difference between our first daughter and and second daughter. The second one, Shane, who has been breastfed till 3.5 years old, is not very sickly. If she does get the colds, it doesn’t stay long, unlike her older sister.

May reduce risk of diseases.

Because it is healthy, natural, and designed for the baby’s body, breast milk may reduce the baby’s risk of infections and many diseases. These include allergy, celiac disease, and even the development of diabetes.

Reduce risk of obesity.

While obesity may be a lifestyle disease, a lot of obese babies and toddlers have had consumed large amounts of formula milk. Meanwhile, breastfed babies have lower obesity rates because mother’s milk does not have additional sugar. Breast milk also has more leptin and more beneficial gut bacteria.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Moms

On the other hand, moms also reap some great benefits because of breastfeeding.

In healing the uterus.

Breastfeeding increases the production of oxytocin, a hormone that causes contractions in the uterus. It reduces blood loss after child birth and helps the uterus return to its previous smaller size.

In losing the pregnancy weight.

Breastfeeding requires a lot of energy. It was reported that a single session of feeding a baby can use up to 500 calories. But if we are not careful, we can also gain weight. Needless to say, with that much calorie burning, it is easy to get hungry and eat more than we need.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
Breastfeeding can easily make you hungry. But it can also help you lose weight because of the calories you burn.

So as breastfeeding moms, we need to be careful with what we eat, choosing healthy foods that will increase our milk production some more without packing in the pounds. By the way, I also took Conzace as part of my post-partum healing supplements. It was recommended by my OB-Gyne.

Birth control.

Though not exactly fool-proof, breastfeeding can be a natural birth control method. Regular breastfeeding pauses ovulation and menstruation. In my experience with Shane, my period resumed 1 year and 2 months after Shane’s birth. As for Shawna, because she was on the breast for only 2 months, my menstruation came back after only three months postpartum.

In preventing postpartum depression.

Studies have linked breastfeeding to preventing postpartum depression. That is because, with the increased amounts of oxytocin in their system, mommies feel naturally encouraged to render care for their newborns. They are also more relaxed and are able to bond with their child better.

I have to agree with this because with Shawna, I experienced mild postpartum depression. With Shane, I can’t even remember feeling sad at all. Indeed, breastfeeding can make mama happy.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
Breastfeeding makes you a happier person and mother.

Lowers risk of reproductive diseases

Breastfeeding for more than one year reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancer by 28%. That’s a very high number. Moreover, breastfeeding has also been linked to the reduced risk of several other reproductive and debilitating diseases.

Low budget.

If you are breastfeeding, you don’t have to worry about buying formula milk, especially when your family budget is getting tight. At most , some of the things that you will need are a breastfeeding cover and nipple cream. If you are working, you might need a breast pump and bottles for storage. You will need supplements, though. You would need them either to increase milk supply or to stay in optimal health.

Minimal effort.

Breastfeeding is actually easier for mommies. Well, at least, I find it easier. There’s no need to warm up bottles or calculate your baby’s daily needs. No need to wash feeding bottles and accessories as well.ย If you are a work at home mom like me, it’s much easier as well. I just open my top and feed. No hassle.

benefits of breastfeeding - normalize breastfeeding Bacolod - breastfeeding benefits for mother and baby
When I am on my computer chair working, Shane would just push my chair and push my top in order to latch. Then she feeds.

At night, when Shane wakes up, I just let her latch and then we both go back to sleep. Although it might not be the same with your child, mine didn’t need burping. So we go to sleep peacefully throughout the night.

Breastfeeding Tips

Here are a couple of breastfeeding tips for you.

  • Breastfeeding is something very personal for every mom. However, we know that breastfeeding is not for everyone. It may either be because of a choice or a circumstance. In my case, I desperately wanted to breastfeed my eldest daughter, but because of health problems, I was not able to. I had to give her formula milk.
  • If you are unable to breastfeed, don’t worry. You still have choices. But if you can, please don’t hesitate to breastfeed because it is best for your babies. I can attest to that with my own two kids.

Note: Photos of breastfeeding moms featured here have been previously made public in the FB page, Normalize Breastfeeding in Bacolod.


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40 thoughts on “Benefits of Breastfeeding for Mom and Baby

  1. This is a very helpful topic you shared. I now have a five-month-old baby girl. It was very painful to start breastfeeding. Now, it’s already normal. But I didn’t know the benefits of breastfeeding for moms. Thanks for sharing them here.

  2. this is so great! i nursed my little guy for 8 months and it was hard at first . the benefits of breastfeeding are amazing though! great article and can’t wait to share with friends who are expecting!

  3. With so many benefits of breastfeeding, I don’t know why some people don’t even try to breastfeed. If you can’t, that’s a different story but otherwise it’s just silly not to!

  4. I had no idea that breastfeeding prevents against diseases and can prevent against obesity as well? It really does sound like breastfeeding is beneficial for both baby and mother! The benefits of breastfeeding are astounding!

  5. This is a lovely post. You provided some really great information on breast feeding and the benefits it brings for both mom and baby. I am sure this will help out a lot of expectant mothers.

  6. This is such a great post and I really enjoyed reading it. I am so glad that you are able to share the importance and benefits of breastfeeding for the mommy and also for her baby.

  7. I think breastfeeding has such great benefits, too! For both mom and baby, if it can be done, it’s definitely the best option.

  8. Brilliant post, Sigrid, and something that needs to constantly be said. I nursed all my 4 kids, the last one until he was 3, because he was the baby! I never had any problems but I know many do. I do think that some give up too easily, but like you said about the bottles – I can’t imagine all that work! Breastfeeding is ways easier! And the benefits of breastfeeding are just awesome!

  9. I am a huge breastfeeding advocate and I have nursed 5 babes myself. Those times of breastfeeding are some of my favourite memories of my children being small. I am grateful that I was able to breastfeed so easily. And the benefits of breastfeeding make it all worth it.

  10. Although breastfeeding isn’t for everyone I think all mums should try it out! I love how you’ve written all the benefits here as still there is such a stigma around public breastfeeding that just needs to end.

  11. There are some great benefits of breastfeeding although I tried very hard not to focus on them as I found breast feeding incredibly difficult. I was unable to breastfeed my two youngest at all due to being premature.

    1. Yeah, sometimes, no matter how we want to, it can be hard. Like my case with my eldest. I really wondered why I couldn’t when I already psyched myself up to do it. As much as we try to give our best to our children, sometimes, we just can’t do it.

  12. I tend to have strong opinions on breastfeeding and don’t understand why it has become such an issue in modern society? This is why women have breast! They were made to feed our offspring. Once upon a time ago there were no such things as bottles. This is why breastfeeding is so much healthier and better, because it’s the way we were meant to feed our babies! I attribute both my childrens strong immune systems to being breastfed๐Ÿ˜Š

    1. Our breasts have been objectified so much that our society has lost sight of their original purpose. I once attended a breastfeeding seminar where the speaker asked, “How about you try offering a plastic nipple to your husband? If you can’t and he won’t accept it, why give it to your baby?” It’s funny but it’s true.

  13. I was already aware of the benefits of breastfeeding as I’m a neonatal nurse but it’s always good to share it with people as some have no idea of how rich it can be! Good article!

  14. There’s no doubt that breastfeeding is an amazing choice for babies if your body can handle it. There’s really so many things that babies can benefit from because of breastfeeding! Glad you’re raising awareness on this and making people understand that it’s not something that all moms can do.

  15. thank you for sharing this informative post on the benefits of breastfeeding. my friend will be a new mommy – so i will share this with her

  16. I think the hardest thing for us with breastfeeding is that we had something that prevented us from doing it long term. I know it’s so important for bonding with mothers. I wish i could have bonded with my daughter better.

  17. In present days the importance of breastfeeding is living a new golden era, after so many years in which many thought it was a secondary and accessory thing and many thought it was even detrimental to breastfeeding for more than one year. health, also mental one, of the future adult (ie the baby) must be put first and is strictly bond with the quality of breastfeeding

  18. Girl!!! Keep it up with these kinds of posts! Yes, breastfeeding is incredible for both child and mom!! I am a firm believer that if you are capable of breastfeeding, you should definately do it, excellent bonding time for mommy and baby! That’s just one of the great benefits of breastfeeding. Wonderful job on your post!

  19. I always jlknew that breastfeeding is just so essential for the baby since breast milk is loaded with much goodies for the baby. And today I just learnt how it’s as important to the mom too…too bad some mom’s don’t consider breastfeeding their babies.

  20. I always heard that breastfeeding is better, but never knew the science behind why. Very informative post about a subject I knew almost nothing about.

  21. Personally breast is always best, I was luckily enough to of been able to breastfeed my daughter for 18 months, however whilst everyone would love to be able to do this amazing thing for our babies, some women are just unable to which can cause them to feel a lot of upset. However you decide to feed your child it is always with the best intentions.

  22. Breastfeeding has such huge benefits for both mommy and baby! You’re so right. And I am glad you are an advocate of breastfedding. It’s really important and healthy, too!

  23. Breastfeeding is the natural way to provide nourishment for a baby. I breastfed all my three children. It was difficult for the first time, dealing with sore nipples and all, but when I think of all the benefits my child would be getting, I just continued breastfeeding them until they were almost two years old.

  24. This type of content needs to be made read by every new moms to make them aware of importance of breastfeeding . Many of moms are unaware of the benefits– breastfeeding is really important for baby as well as mother’s health.

  25. Yes, breastfeeding offers the best nutrition for baby and provides so many health benefits. The benefits of breastfeeding include the baby receiving all of the vitamins and nutrients they need, and it helps in strengthening the babies immune system and combat illness. It also aids in the bond between mother and infant.

    1. Exactly. Breastfeeding is the best way to go. So if it’s possible, moms should really choose to breastfeed their babies. ๐Ÿ˜€ At least up to the first 6 months of life.

  26. I’m a doctor and all the research on this topic points to one thing and one thing only: Breast milk is very very important and beneficial for the infants. In India, there are dedicated national programs that promote the importance of that fact of breastfeeding!

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