Breastfeeding not only fosters a deep emotional connection between mother and child but also serves as a vital source of essential nutrients crucial for a baby's healthy development. So without further delay, here are 5 facts about breastmilk no one told you about!
1. Breastmilk contains antibodies that provide immunity to baby!
Studies have highlighted that breastmilk contains various immunoglobulins, including secretory IgA, lactoferrin, and lysozyme, which provide crucial immunity and protection against infections during the first few months of life. The concentration of these immune factors can vary depending on the mother's health and the baby's needs.
2. Breastmilk has melatonin which helps baby sleep!
Babies are born with no understanding of day and night difference. Circadian rhythm develops over time which is why newborns tend to sleep and wake up at random intervals. According to a 2011 study published in National Library of Medicine, breastmilk contains melatonin at night which helps baby sleep and which is how babies learn to sleep longer at night! Incredible!
3. Breastmilk contains fatty acids, vitamins and vital minerals!
Research has demonstrated that breastmilk offers an optimal balance of essential nutrients such as carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals. It provides easily digestible and bioavailable nutrients crucial for a baby's growth, including adequate levels of vitamin A, vitamin D, and calcium, among others.Studies have emphasized the significance of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFAs) in breastmilk, particularly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA), for promoting optimal brain and visual development in infants. Research indicates that these fatty acids play a crucial role in cognitive function and visual acuity during the early stages of life.
4. Breastfeeding at night may help moms get more sleep!
Babies have very small tummies and tend to feed at short intervals. Which means mothers are nursing throughout the night. A study published in PubMed shows that breastfeeding mothers get more sleep in the night, almost 45 minutes of extra sleep in the first 3 months postpartum. And its very well known that sleep is very essential for a mother's mental health and reduces her chance of postpartum depression.
5. The composition of breastmilk changes in a single feeding session!
This fact is extra ordinary to know! In the start of a feeding session, the milk is more watery and serves to provide essential vitamins and minerals, this is the foremilk. Towards the end of the session, the milk turns thicker and fattier which gives baby the required calories to grow strong and healthy!
Did you know?
Breastmilk changes composition depending on the health of mother and baby! According to Academy of Breastfeeding medicine, breastmilk changes composition if baby or mother is sick! The mother's body provides the required antibodies to the baby through the breastmilk to fight the bug. The antibodies will continue to be in the breastmilk as long as you nurse, even if you continue to nurse into toddlerhood! When a nursing parent is under the weather, antibodies against that infection begin to be produced immediately and are found in breast milk!
Mother's milk is best for the baby- we have read this line everywhere and there is enough research to prove- breastmilk is simply magic! Its the epitome of the undeniable bond a mother and her baby shares and its personalized to the needs of the baby! We hope you felt proud of yourself for breastfeeding! Share in comments how long have you been breastfeeding!
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