Exclusive breastfeeding for six months benefits babies and mothers – Minister Anthony

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, MP, says it is important that mothers breastfeed their babies exclusively for the first six months of their lives, as this has shown to have numerous short and long-term benefits.

Dr. Anthony was at the time speaking at a symposium hosted by the Ministry, on Wednesday, in observance of World Breastfeeding Week.

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony MP, delivers his address

“We have seen from the numbers we have had, many mothers, while we spend so much time talking about the benefits and advantages of exclusive breastfeeding, there are still many mothers and fathers who are not doing this.

“We want to reinforce that it is important not just for your family, but for that child to be able to do exclusive breastfeeding and, if you do so, you would get immediate and long-term results.”

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, MP, presents a token to this family.

Dr. Anthony said breastfeeding for the first six months of a child’s life results in less infections in babies and infants.

“That’s another benefit because we have seen.

“With the exclusively breastfed infant, they have very little or no such infections and it ranges not only with the diarrhoeal diseases, but we have seen in small children, they would have ear infections that has been drastically reduced. Their visits to hospitals would be significantly reduced.”

A mother and her baby

Mothers who breastfeed also reap some benefits. They have a lower risk of breast and ovarian cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, less endometriosis, less osteoporosis with age, less diabetes, less hypertension and decreases blood pressure and less cardiovascular disease.

During the symposium, several mothers were presented with tokens of appreciation.

World Breastfeeding Week is observed every year from August 1-7. It is a global campaign coordinated by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action to raise awareness on the importance breastfeeding.