“Breastfeeding is more than nourishment; It is an act of perseverance, vulnerability, and hope.”
To elaborate, breastfeeding is not just the most natural method of providing essential nutrients and antibodies to your child, but it also strengthens the emotional bond between a mother and her child.
It is a critical aspect of early childhood development. Rich in proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals, breastmilk ensures optimal growth and development of an infant. It is recommended that infants be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life and should be initiated within the first hour of birth.
Breastfed children are at lower risk of obesity/weight gain, diabetes, allergies, respiratory infections, and gastrointestinal disorders later in life. The first milk produced after birth, or colostrum, is packed with antibodies that boost the infant's immune system, offering protection against various infections and illnesses. The benefits of breastfeeding aren’t limited to just the baby but extend to the mother as well as it aids in postpartum weight loss, reduces the risk of postpartum depression, and helps uterine contraction, all of which facilitate quicker recovery after childbirth.
Based on the latest data from the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), breastfeeding rates have shown a positive trend across the globe. In recent years, there has been significant growth in breastfeeding initiation rates, indicating a growing awareness of its importance. However, despite all this progress, a question lingers: Why is it that globally, only 44% of infants under six months are exclusively breastfed?
The answer to this is found in our daily lives. Mothers return to the workplace due to inadequate maternal leaves, while also facing a lack of support at the workplace, combined with societal prejudices and barriers. The aggressive marketing campaigns for breastmilk substitutes and the lack of knowledge on the benefits of breastfeeding and breastmilk don’t help the cause either.
These factors call for action and increased awareness around the whole topic of breastfeeding. It is time to realize breastfeeding matters, and that is what we at All Things Baby aim to achieve this year through our awareness campaigns on our social media channels, where we bridge the gap by sharing knowledge, experiences and having conversations about breastfeeding.
We are here to tell you, #breastfeedingmatters !
Breastfeeding Week 2023 - Enabling Breastfeeding:
Making a difference for working parents
The theme for this year focuses on raising awareness about the challenges faced by modern, working women who find it difficult to incorporate the practice of breastfeeding into their lives.
It also includes the workplace into the bigger conversation - that it must be considerate about the very subject of motherhood and breastfeeding. The primary objective of the breastfeeding week is to empower women with well-informed choices about breastfeeding, while also supporting them to initiate and continue breastfeeding. The aim is to encourage creation of a safe and nurturing environment for breastfeeding, while also addressing all concerns that hinder the development of infants and mothers, or the practice itself.