New Delhi [India], April 28 (ANI/Mediawire): Human breast milk is considered liquid gold due to its nutritional and lifesaving properties.
It contains all the necessary nutrients required for a baby’s overall growth. As a new mom, you may encounter a lot of challenges breastfeeding your baby.
The experience may not always be magical, but your efforts are worth the benefits which breastfeeding offers for your baby. Not only is the baby equipped to fight immediate illness and infections but is also set for a lifetime of good health and well-being.
Arushi Agarwal, IBCLC, Certified Lactation consultant, Jaipur informed that breastfeeding is a lifetime’s insurance against illness and disease when a baby is fed the mother’s own milk within an hour of birth and then fed often on demand after that. Breast milk, known as the “first vaccination,” offers critical nutrients, antibodies, and infection-fighting components to the new-born. Putting the infant to the breast offers them with important nutrition, antibodies, and skin-to-skin contact with their mother, all of which help to keep them healthy.
Human breast milk contains a combination of anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and immunomodulators that impart both active and passive immunity to the baby. Breastmilk also contains antibodies known as Immunoglobulins, that pass from mother to the baby. The initial breastmilk called Colostrum is a thick yellowish fluid high in proteins and low in sugar, packed with antioxidants and antibodies.
Colostrum contains high number of antibodies which help protect the baby, by forming a protective layer in the baby’s nose, throat and gastrointestinal tract. These immunoglobulins protect the baby from infections until the baby’s immunity is matured enough to fight infections on its own.
Dr Vikram Reddy, Chief Scientific Officer, NeoLacta Lifesciences emphasized that colostrum is equivalent to liquid gold. It is the best form of immunization that a mother can give to her child right after birth. It consists of numerous amounts of antibodies that are required by the baby during early stage of life. Since a child’s immunity is not fully developed until few months after birth, so breast milk plays a vital role in fighting infections and building a new-borns immunity.
As breast milk transitions from colostrum to transitional milk and then mature milk, the profile of immunoglobulins keeps changing. These immunoglobulins continue to pass on benefits to the baby as long as they are breastfed.
Even after the baby has started solid foods, the antibodies in breastmilk will adapt and continue to fight infections, that the baby will be exposed to. When a nursing mother is infected, she produces antibodies to fight that specific infection. These antibodies are then passed on her baby through breastmilk which help protect the baby from future infections.
70 per cent of the immune system lies in the gut. The strength of the immune system depends on the quantity of good bacteria in the intestine, called probiotics. Oligosaccharides are a form of complex sugars which are present in breast milk performing various functions including acting as a nutrient source for probiotics in the gut.
To sum it up, the benefits of breast milk are numerous. There is no substitute for breastmilk since it is uniquely designed to provide optimum nutrition and immunity to keep your baby healthy and keep various diseases and infections at bay. Breastmilk composition also varies with the baby’s growing age, catering to nutritional needs at specific ages to help mental and physical development.
As the baby grows, their immunity is progressively strengthened through the planned immunization schedule lasting through their teens, but it all starts with breastfeeding as evolution’s own way of immunizing new-borns.
Issued in public interest by NeoLacta Lifesciences (India’s only ISO 22000:2018 and GMP certified human milk facility)
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