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Importance of Breastfeeding

Importance of Breastfeeding

The Facts about Breastfeeding

UnityPoint Health - Pekin supports breastfeeding because research indicates that both moms and babies are healthier throughout their lives as a result of breastfeeding. Check out these facts!

  • Breastfeeding offers an unmatched beginning for your child. Human breast milk offers your child the most complete nutrition possible - including an optimal mix of nutrients and antibodies to help your baby thrive. Scientific studies indicate breastfed children have fewer and less serious illnesses.
  • Breastfeeding is good for moms too. Recent studies indicate women who breastfeed have a reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer, diabetes, anemia and osteoporosis. You can feel good about being able to provide your baby with complete nourishment and create a special bond through breastfeeding.
  • Breastfeeding saves money. In addition to being free, breast milk helps to reduce healthcare costs and the time it takes to care for a sick child.
  • Breastfeeding is good for the community. Research indicates that breastfeeding families miss less work. Since breast milk is free and research indicates its health benefits, baby breastfeeding helps to lower healthcare costs and reduce the financial burden on families and third-party payers, as well as community and government programs.
  • Breastfeeding gives your child a developmental advantage. Research indicates that breastfed babies have higher IQ scores, as well as better brain and nervous system development.
  • Breastfeeding is good for the environment. Scientists agree that breast milk is the very best way to nourish babies. It may even protect them from some of the effects of pollution. In addition, breastfeeding does not contribute to pollution and waste problems because none of the tin, paper, plastic or energy necessary for preparing, packaging and transporting baby formulas are required. Also, research indicates that exclusive breastfeeding helps to regulate pregnancies naturally.

Source:, adapted from "Did You Know Breastfeeding Makes a Difference?" written by La Leche League, the International Lactation Consultant Association and the National Alliance for Breastfeeding Advocacy.

For general information on breastfeeding and frequently asked questions, go to the La Leche League website at