What are the benefits of breastfeeding?

August 03, 2023

What are the benefits of breastfeeding?

People often talk about the health benefits of breastfeeding....but what do they really mean? 

Some of the things that we know about breastmilk and breastfeeding are truly mind-blowing. Here are 9 incredible facts about breastfeeding - and I bet you don't know all of them!

1. A substance in breastmilk has been found to kill over 40 types of cancer! One teaspoon of breastmilk has as many as 3 million germ-killing cells in it!

2. In hot weather, your breastmilk adapts to have a higher water content to keep your baby hydrated! (Never give water to an exclusively breastfed baby under 6 months, it can be dangerous. Just keep feeding on demand.)

3. Your baby's saliva sends messages to your body to produce any antibodies that are needed in that moment. If you were to pump when unwell, you might notice that your milk is a more greeny colour - that's the antibodies!

4. You can re-lactate (start breastfeeding again) months after stopping breastfeeding - or even induce lactation having not even had a baby before!

5. Colostrum (your first milk) lines the inside of your baby's stomach to protect it from infection. Its not just food - its a protective medicine!

6. Breastfeeding has huge and varied health benefits for you, that increase with every month of breastfeeding! For example, if half the women who do not currently breastfeed were to do so, there would be 865 fewer cases of cancer.

7. Breastmilk contains components that make your baby sleepy - that's why they feed to sleep! It also relaxes you so that you find it easier to fall back to sleep. Breastfeeding mums have been found to have more sleep than bottle-feeding mums. 

8. You can tandem feed a newborn baby and a toddler and your body will give each child exactly what they need for their stage of development!

9. A child's immune system doesn't reach full strength until about 5 years old - for this reason the natural age of weaning is actually between 2.5 and 7 years of age!

And what's more...we're still learning more about the incredible benefits of breastfeeding, every year. 

If you would like to breastfeed your baby, pregnancy is the best time to prepare. Book in for a power hour focused on breastfeeding or get in touch about my full antenatal breastfeeding course. 

Rachel xxx 

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