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The Importance of Exclusively Breastfeeding till 6 Months

Many new moms wonder how long they should breastfeed their babies- while some paediatrics would insist on breastfeeding infants for the first year of their life, exclusive breastfeeding should be done for the first six months. Baby CareThe first six months is a very crucial time period wherein you develop a bond with your baby through nursing and the skin contact and the new born baby also derives all the necessary nutrients from the mother’s milk which fortifies his immunity system. Nursing beyond that is at the discretion of the mother, as she be getting back to work, have health issues or simply unable to cope. Here are some pointers on why breast milk is the best milk for your baby for the first six months:
  • Colostrum is the milk that the mother produces immediately after delivery and this healthy yellow sticky milk is often termed as the ‘first vaccination’ for the baby owing to its medicinal properties. Colostrum, though concentrated, is perfect for the baby’s digestion system and in fact helps protect the baby from infection as it coats the intestinal tract and prevents invasion by harmful bacteria. It also functions as a laxative and helps clear the system by excretion of meconium.
  • Breastfeeding enables the mother and baby to have skin contact and hence it helps in bonding. This enables the mother to recover quicker as the body releases hormones that help in uterus contraction.
  • Babies that are exclusively breastfed for 6 months are less susceptible to illnesses, and various other respiratory and digestive illnesses.

  • New Born BabyNursing in fact is more relaxing for a new mom as she is ‘forced’ to sit for longer period of time. Eventually, more feeding leads to a better milk supply.
  • The hormones that are released during nursing called prolactin and oxytoxin help to relax the mother and relieve all stress.
  • Babies that are breastfed are much healthier than formula fed babies.
  • Nursing also helps the mother to shed off her post partum weight faster as a lot of calories (nearly 500 calories) and fat is used in breast milk production.
  • A mother is capable of exclusively keeping her infant on her milk for six months without any top feed whatsoever.

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