Close to the Heart
Breastfeeding our Children, Honoring our Values
(A Resource of the Indian Health Service)
Honoring our Values...
There is no bond quite as special as the one between a breastfeeding mom and her baby. Many women also feel that breastfeeding is more convenient than bottlefeeding and much less expensive–no formula to buy.
You can continue to breastfeed even after you return to work or to school. An increasing number of employers provide nursing mothers a private room where they can nurse their babies or pump their breasts, and some employers now allow women to bring their babies to work with them. Employers have found that mothers who breastfeed are more productive employees and have lower rates of absenteeism.
Benefits of Breastfeeding
- Breastfed babies are healthier–they have fewer:
- Ear infections
- Respiratory infections (colds, coughs, flu)
- Bouts of diarrhea and pneumonia
- Urinary tract infections
- Breast milk contains a balance of nutrients that is just right for growing babies.
- Breastfed babies grow up leaner.
- Breastfed babies are less likely to get diabetes later in life.
- Breastfeeding may protect against infection even after breastfeeding stops.
- Breastfed babies have stronger immune systems.
- Women who breastfeed return more easily to their pre-pregnancy weight.
- Breastfeeding is convenient and inexpensive.
- Breastfeeding can fit with school or work.
Nurturing our Children
Breastfeeding is the healthiest way to nourish our children. Mother's milk provides protection for babies against infection. Breast milk also lowers a child's risk of becoming obese or developing diabetes later in life.
Breastfeeding offers many benefits to nursing moms. Breastfeeding mothers have lower rates of certain kinds of cancers. Women who breastfeed also return to their pre-pregnancy weight more easily than women who bottlefeed.
For more information call the
Phoenix Indian Medical Center, IHS
Diabetes Center of Excellence
Breastfeeding Helpline at 1–877–868–9473 (toll-free)
Funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH
Page last updated: November 14, 2011