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World Breastfeeding Week: Many Health Benefits For Lactating Mother, Child

World Breastfeeding Week celebrated in the first week of August (1 to 7) every year is marked to encourage breastfeeding, which improves the health of both the babies and mothers around the world

World Breastfeeding Week: Many Health Benefits For Lactating Mother, Child
  • As per the experts, breastfeeding should start within an hour of birth
  • Breastfeeding helps to shed pregnancy weight: Padma Shri Dr Alka Kriplani
  • Breastfeeding, best bonding time between a mother and a child: Dr Kriplani

New Delhi: With many moments of hugs and giggles promised ahead, the little one has come with a wave so strong, making her the best of being a woman– the mother she is becoming. Motherhood and entering the world of breastfeeding can be the most phenomenal phase in a woman’s life. World Breastfeeding Week, celebrated in the first week of August (1 to 7) every year, is marked to encourage breastfeeding, which improves the health of both, the babies and mothers around the world.

It commemorates the Innocenti Declaration signed in August 1990 by government policymakers, WHO, UNICEF, and other organizations to protect, promote, and support breastfeeding.

According to Padma Shri Dr Alka Kriplani — Director & Head, Centre for Minimally Invasive Gynecology, Obstetrics & ART, Paras Hospital Gurugram — every second of post-birth counts as it provides the best outlet of development for the baby.

Breastfeeding, as per the doctor, is “essential during the golden hour” as it provides a host of benefits that greatly impacts the health of both mother and child.

Also Read: In Maharashtra’s Amravati and Nandurbar Districts New Mothers Are Championing The Cause Of Breastfeeding, Courtesy Nutrition India Programme

It contributes to neonatal immunity, thermoregulation, decreases stress levels, and improved mother-newborn bonding. Babies, who have breastfed, have lower rates of asthma, diabetes, childhood leukemia and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. An adequate amount of breast milk acts as a shield against diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Apart from all this, breastfeeding also helps regulate the baby’s body temperature and breathing. Mothers should continue breastfeeding in the times of corona too as it is pivotal for strengthening child’s immunity, explained Dr Kriplani.

Shedding light to the current scenario that is amid the coronavirus pandemic, Dr Akta Bajaj, Sr Consultant, and head- Obstetrics, and Gynecology, Ujala Cygnus Healthcare, said: “mothers are more inclined to give formula milk or animal milk as a substitute.”

While this practice makes it convenient to feed the infant formula impacts their health. Breastfeeding is good for the mother’s health and it helps to shed the pregnancy weight. It’s the best bonding time between a mother and a child. Normally, the flow of breastmilk in a new mother is less during the initial hours but as the baby keeps suckling, the flow gradually increases, she explained.

Dr Bajaj further noted, “Our lack of knowledge of mechanisms of the human body makes us give up at this juncture thinking that the amount is not enough. The formula is harder to digest for a new baby. It stays in the stomach longer than breast milk, which may cause your baby to feed less often and could cause a decrease in your milk production. Supplementing with formula, especially from a bottle, may change your baby’s suck pattern at the breast.”

Also Read: Breastfeeding And Coronavirus Outbreak: Here Is What Nursing Mothers Should Know

Dr. Amita Shah, Senior Consultant and Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Columbia Asia Hospital stressed on the importance of exclusive breastfeeding up to six months as it allows the infants to access and “easily digestible and suitable form of protein, sugar, and fat for the unique needs of a newborn.”

Human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs), structurally complicated sugar molecules unique to human breast milk, are the third most abundant solid component in human milk after lactose and fat and act as a prebiotic that promotes the development of the gut microbiota, a key influencer of allergic disease. Breast milk is also full of antibodies that help the newborn fight infections caused by viruses and bacteria, Dr Shah said.

Also Read: Breast Milk Could Help Prevent Heart Disease In Premature Infants: Study

Explaining more, Dr Shah said, “Colostrum, the first milk, is thick, particularly rich in protein that provides high amounts of immunoglobulin A (IgA) as well as several other antibodies. That is why breastfeeding should start within an hour of birth. Babies who are breastfed as infants have lower rates of ear infections, pneumonia, stomach viruses and diarrhea, cancers such as lymphoma and leukemia, bowel diseases such as Crohn’s, asthma, allergies, eczema, diabetes, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).”

Dr Shah noted the many benefits of breastfeeding for the mother, including a reduction in the risk of “breast or ovarian cancer, heart disease and osteoporosis.”

It helps in burning calories and quickens uterus return to pre-pregnancy size faster, thereby hastening the postpartum healing rate. Lactating mothers should be careful about their diet as it will have an impact on the breastfed baby.

They should take high protein foods such as whole grains, dried and fruits, vegetables, cereals, pulses, eggs and chicken and also drink a lot of water, fresh fruit juices, tender coconut, lassi and lime juice to maintain the right level of hydration. However, lactating mothers should avoid alcohol at all costs, suggested Dr Shah.

Also Read: How Did This Chhattisgarh District Become The ‘Breastfeeding Champion’ Of The Country

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene


Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 24,50,12,529 and 49,72,271 have died; 20,64,25,824 are active cases and 3,36,14,434 have recovered as on October 28, 2021 at 4:00 am.


3,42,31,809 16,156Cases
3,36,14,434 17,095Recovered
4,56,386 733Deaths
In India, there are 3,42,31,809 confirmed cases including 4,56,386 deaths. The number of active cases is 1,60,989 and 3,36,14,434 have recovered as on October 28, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths

66,06,536 1,485

23,096 3,500

64,43,342 4,947

1,40,098 38


49,38,603 9,445

77,158 2,100

48,31,468 6,723

29,977 622


29,86,835 282

8,459 80

29,40,339 349

38,037 13

Tamil Nadu

26,98,493 1,075

12,288 252

26,50,145 1,315

36,060 12

Andhra Pradesh

20,64,854 567

4,777 122

20,45,713 437

14,364 8

Uttar Pradesh

17,10,114 13

100 6

16,87,115 7


West Bengal

15,89,042 976

7,973 124

15,61,973 837

19,096 15


14,39,709 38

348 25

14,14,270 13



10,39,818 549

4,392 213

10,27,108 334

8,318 2


10,05,926 28

263 14

9,92,088 12

13,575 2


9,54,411 4

20 0

9,45,437 4



8,26,481 17

173 2

8,16,220 15


Madhya Pradesh

7,92,804 20

108 9

7,82,172 10

10,524 1


7,71,204 15

133 5

7,61,022 10



7,26,073 5

41 1

7,16,371 4



6,70,829 186

4,164 63

6,62,714 122

3,951 1


6,09,506 244

3,838 153

5,99,681 391

5,987 6


6,02,289 38

246 20

5,85,487 16

16,556 2


3,48,705 28

160 30

3,43,408 56

5,137 2


3,43,861 17

150 6

3,36,312 23


Jammu And Kashmir

3,31,865 70

838 16

3,26,596 86


Himachal Pradesh

2,23,406 261

1,972 211

2,17,693 48

3,741 2


1,77,969 23

454 29

1,74,152 51

3,363 1


1,27,846 40

443 10

1,25,546 50



1,23,473 70

844 29

1,20,712 97

1,917 2


1,19,496 547

7,320 446

1,11,752 991

424 2


84,438 15

123 1

83,499 14



83,466 51

507 22

81,511 71

1,448 2


65,331 5

29 2

64,482 3


Arunachal Pradesh

55,120 6

115 22

54,725 28



31,925 13

177 1

31,353 12



31,759 12

222 3

30,856 15



20,925 8

47 6

20,670 2


Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,682 1

6 0

10,672 1




0 0



Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,650 2

5 1

7,516 1


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