If you are looking for one more reason to breastfeed your baby, consider the latest research on the link between breastfeeding and lower asthma rates in children. According to two new research reports, breastfeeding increases lung volume which makes babies and children less susceptible to get asthma.
Also, this new research found that even mothers who were asthmatic still benefited their children by breastfeeding them and thus increasing their lung volume. In the past it was thought that only asthma-free moms should breastfeed. This research shows that the babies benefited from breastfeeding whether or not the mom had asthma. (It’s suspected that the babies suckling activity when breastfeeding increases it’s lung power).
Even more significantly, these studies showed that the longer the mother exclusively breastfeed their baby, the less risk the child had of getting asthma or breathing related problems. A team led by Karen Silvers with data on more than 1000 kids found that each additional month of exclusive breastfeeding was tied to a nine percentage drop in asthma risk.
The World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding exclusively (with no formula) for the first six months of the child’s life then to continue to breastfeed (as solids are introduced) for two years or longer.
So, here’s some more reasons to breastfeed your child (particularly exclusively breastfeeding them for the first 6 months of life). Your child will reap the benefits for a lifetime.
SOURCES: bit.ly/yCsmfY American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, online February 3, 2012 and bit.ly/wVKRCQ Journal of Pediatrics, online January 29, 2012.