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A New Reason to Find Breastfeeding Support

For Further Information: Mary Lofton, PRManager at (847) 519-7730, ext. #271 or Mary Hurt, PRAssociate, ext. #286

Schaumburg, IL (May, 2004) La Leche League International (LLLI) was pleased to learn of a study appearing in the May 2004 issue of Pediatrics. According to this study by Aimin Chen, MD, PhD and Walter J. Rogan, breastfed babies are less likely to die during the first year of life than those who are formula fed.

It has long been known that breastfed infants in the United States have lower risks of becoming ill from infectious disease and that world-wide mortality rates are lower in babies who are breastfed. However, there have been few studies about first-year mortality rates in the developed world.

Furthermore, this study in Pediatrics states that longer breastfeeding was associated with lower risk. The authors of this study concluded, “The case for breastfeeding is already very strong, but this benefit on such a basic outcome might still increase encouragement and support for breastfeeding in US children.”

Breastfeeding offers long-term health benefits to mothers and babies. The overwhelming health benefits of human milk are well-documented. These include the prevention of gastrointestinal and respiratory illness, ear infection and immunologic disorders. In addition to improved health during infancy, breastfeeding has been found to reduce the incidence of allergy and the frequency of certain diseases later in life, including breast cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes, ulcerative colitis and Crohns Disease.

While breastfeeding is a natural function it is also a learned art. Many mothers have found that attending La Leche League Meetings has helped them learn the art of breastfeeding. LLLI, the world’s foremost authority on mother-to-mother support, offers meetings in over sixty different countries. LLLI’s Web site is contacted by over three million visitors a year and offers comprehensive information about breastfeeding. For further information about breastfeeding, please visit the LLLI Web site or call (847) 519-7730.

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