Breast milk is the milk secreted in women’s breast to feed their babies. When a woman is pregnant (more precise, before the delivery), her milk ducts grow as the milk-producing cells, called alveoli, are multiplied. As the function of the hormone Prolactin, the alveoli extract the proteins, sugars, and fat from the blood supplied to the breast. This is how the production of breast milk is. When a baby is feeding its mother’s milk, the secreted milk that collected in the alveoli flows throw the milk ducts and reaches baby’s mouth via the nipple openings. The sucking action of the baby draws the milk continuously as the sucking squeezes the duct. Breastfeeding is also called lactation and nursing.
The breast milk is nutrient rich which contains water, carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, fat, amino acids, and other necessary enzymes. Every time a mother feeding her baby should be a period of about 40 minutes, each side 20−20 minutes. First 10 minutes drawn milk is called as the foremilk and it contains water and lactose; similarly, the second 10 minutes milk is called as hindmilk which is rich in fat. The fatty acids present in the breast milk acts a brain booster. Simply to say about breast milk is a necessary nutrient with perfect proportions.
The importance of breast milk is numerous. A few are listed here for you:
For baby: First and foremost thing is that breast milk is the ideal nutrient food for any newborn, especial the colostrums.
Absolutely safe and sterile.
Digestion is easy in the baby as well as the availability.
Reduces the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Protects from infections and other health issues like obesity, diabetes, cancer, asthma, etc.
Responsive to the vaccine.
Contraction of the uterus back to its normal size happens due to the sucking action of the baby.
Risk of postpartum bleeding or hemorrhage is reduced. Risk of ovarian cancer and osteoporosis is lowered.
Weight gained during pregnancy is brought down as the extra calories are burnt.
Apart from all these benefits, a basic one is there that is the bondage between a mother and the baby is well strengthened. It is more relaxing for both the mother and the baby. Health professionals suggest that in the first hour of the newborn the breastfeeding should be started and at least continued for 2 years of that baby. In meanwhile, how much and how often the breast milk should be given will always depend upon the needs of that baby.