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WIC might prevent mothers from feeding cow's milk too early
Date:6/29/2010

the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Birth Cohort -- a nationally representative longitudinal study of children born in 2001. The researchers found that low-income mothers were also far more likely to formula feed rather than breastfeed their infants. Breast milk has other benefits over formula and cow's milk. It contains antibodies that can boost infants' immunity, it can provide emotional benefits for baby and mother and it can help mothers lose post pregnancy weight. Because of the evidence for the positive effects of breast milk, WIC encourages mothers to breastfeed. However, Hernandez believes the low breastfeeding rate among WIC participants is related to the lack of proper facilities to pump breast milk at low-wage jobs sites.

"We need to rethink the environment of low-wage jobs by taking a closer look at who is being hired and what public programs are available to them to see if there's a disconnect between low-wage job facilities and advice that is delivered by public programs," said Hernandez.

Hernandez believes that doctors and employers can learn from this study and that they can provide access and information to mothers to improve their infants' health.

"If doctors know that a pregnant patient is economically disadvantaged, they can help get the patient enrolled in WIC sooner. It can be as simple as providing them with an application form or showing them a list of grocery stores that accept WIC dollars," she says.


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Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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