“A natural first food, breast milk contains all the nutrients that newborns and infants need for healthy development,” said Kathleen Forzley, Oakland County Health Division health officer/manager. “Breast milk also provides infants with all the energy that they need during the first months of life as well as antibodies that help protect from common illnesses.”
Currently, about 75 percent of women in Michigan initiate breastfeeding but only 13 percent exclusively breastfeed at six months. Michigan Department of Community Health reports that exclusively breastfeeding for six months has several advantages for both baby and mother. It can help protect your baby against ear infections, lower respiratory infections, asthma, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes. There are health benefits for mothers as well. Breastfeeding helps shield them from breast cancer, ovarian cancer, Type 2 diabetes and postpartum depression. It also helps women return to pre-pregnancy weight, reduces risk of anemia, and provides unique bonding experiences for a mother and her child.
About National Breastfeeding Awareness Month
August has been declared Michigan Breastfeeding Awareness Month by Governor Snyder. Communities across Michigan have since observed August as a time to raise awareness of breastfeeding as the norm for infant and young child feeding and to celebrate the efforts being put forth to make Michigan more breastfeeding friendly. The 2014 theme is “Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal – For Life!”
For more information about WIC or the Milk-N-Moms Breastfeeding Bash event, please contact 248-858-1272 or visit www.oakgov.com/health or find us on Facebook and Twitter @publichealthOC.