New parents make many important decisions, one of which is to breastfeed or use formula.
Breastfeeding Vs Formula-feeding
It’s a frequent misunderstanding that formula is equivalent to breast milk.
Breastmilk is the gold standard for infants because it aids brain development and boosts the immune system. Formula does not boost the immune system as breastmilk does. Infants who are breastfed have lower mortality rates and infections than those who are formula-fed.
Breast milk comes in three stages: colostrum, transitional, and mature.
- Colostrum lasts 2-4 days after birth and is thicker and yellower than future breast milk. It contains proteins, vitamins, and immunoglobulins (antibodies), which give newborns immunity.
- Transitional milk lasts about two weeks and has lots of fat, lactose, and vitamins.
- Mature milk is produced after transitional milk and is mostly water, but also has carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to help with growth.
There are many non-nutritional benefits to breastfeeding as well:
- It’s completely free.
- Breastfeeding may lessen the mother’s risk of breast cancer and heart disease and shrinks the uterus faster.
- Skin-to-skin contact is a great way to bond with a new baby.
The three most common types of formula are cow milk protein-based, soy-based, and protein hydrolysate formula.
- Cow milk-based formula is simpler to digest than conventional cow milk since its nutrients are closer to breast milk.
- Soy-based formulas are a good choice for lactose-intolerant newborns.
- Hydrolyzed proteins make digestion simpler. They’re a fantastic option for infants with cow milk or soy allergies.
The non-nutritional benefits of formula or bottle feeding include:
- It’s worth noting that bottle-feeding can give another partner a chance to bond with the baby.
RELATED: 15 Breastfeeding Secrets For Every New Black Mom
Medical Professionals & Their Recommendations For Mothers
After birth, doctors advise feeding an infant nothing but breast milk for the first six months and then gradually introducing other foods over the next year. But for various reasons, not all mothers can nurse their babies. When moms are pushed into breastfeeding when they don’t want to or are unable to, some medical professionals don’t realize their impact on the mothers. Not one person should be made to feel bad about it either.
For example, I have three children, and I have always been able to do both if I choose to. Not being given the option in the hospital to even try giving my baby formula the third time around was irritating. I was not given