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Breast Milk Reduces Infections in Babies
Date:6/21/2010

p>Adding formula or solid food to the diet might blunt the effect of the breast milk by disrupting the balance of nutrients provided by breast milk, said Moll.

"Respiratory and GI infections are very common in infants, and breast-feeding seems to positively impact the incidence of these infections," said Dr. Michael Green, an infectious disease specialist with Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh.

"Unless there is a medical contraindication, like an HIV infection, there's no absolute reason not to breast-feed and certainly lots and lots of great reasons to do so, and this study confirms the baby will get infectious disease benefits," said Green. But, he added that some women and families have a hard time breast-feeding, and they shouldn't be made to feel bad if they can't breast-feed for a long time.

He recommended that breast-feeding education be included as part of prenatal education so that women are well-prepared to breast-feed and know what problems they might encounter as well as how to deal with them.

More information

Learn more about the benefits of breast-feeding from the National Women's Health Information Center.



SOURCES: Henriette Moll, M.D., Ph.D., professor, pediatrics, Sophia's Children's Hospital, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, the Netherlands; Michael Green, M.D., professor, pediatrics and surgery, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and division of infectious diseases, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh; July 2010 Pediatrics


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