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Breast Feeding

Breast Feeding

A mother’s breast milk is specially designed for the needs of an infant. In fact, breast milk changes over time to perfectly suit the nutritional needs of the baby. During the first few days after giving birth, breast milk is a thick, yellowish substance called colostrum. It then changes to breast milk at the end of the first week when the baby is ready for a different type of nourishment.

Mother’s breast milk protects babies from many illnesses, provides vital nutrients that babies need to grow and develop and helps moms lose pregnancy weight faster. In addition, breast-fed babies experience fewer ear, lung and urinary tract infections, and are less likely to have asthma, certain cancers, obesity and diabetes later in life. And breast milk is free!

Some mothers may find it difficult to breastfeed, and for some babies and mothers (such as those with drug addictions), breastfeeding may not be a safe option. Check with your health care provider for information on how to breastfeed and obtain breastfeeding support.

For more information on breastfeeding, visit the March of Dimes website.