In this health video you will learn how breastfeeding makes a difference in your child's overall health.
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Raena Morgan: Big question: will breastfeeding make a difference in a child’s health? Dr. Molly Ferguson: Oh, absolutely. I think there’s an unbelievable amount of research out there about that. And I would just list some of the top conditions that we see in the healthcare community. Breastfeeding can help prevent cancer, so you’re child throughout childhood and actually life is going to have a lower risk of cancer. It will decrease the risk for childhood obesity as well as adult obesity, which in turn decreases your risk for heart disease and diabetes—the top killers. It also decreases your child’s risk of autoimmune conditions, including type I diabetes. So I know some parents where that run in their family and are making the choice to breastfeed primarily even for that reason, to prevent type I diabetes in their family. Raena Morgan: It didn’t even used to be a choice. It went out of style in the ‘50s when I was a child and mothers fed their babies with formula and no one breastfed. Dr. Molly Ferguson: I think there was a time when we thought science could outdo nature— Raena Morgan: Oh, I think so. Dr. Molly Ferguson: Yeah. And so we’ve since discovered no, there are actually living cells even in breast milk—white blood cells—and active immunoglobulin’s and things that protect your child’s immune system and health so, unbelievable. Raena Morgan: I’m really glad that it’s back in style. I did breastfeed both my sons, but I was treated as if I were just a little bit strange, you know—really going against the norm. Can you imagine that? So, my kids were pretty healthy, too. Dr. Molly Ferguson: Yeah. And absolutely that what you’ll see. Breastfed children are at decreased risk for serious illness and for chronic illnesses, even in infancy—especially in infancy—such as chronic ear infections, colds, flu’s and things like that. So, it will actually save you money and worry in the long run to breastfeed. Raena Morgan: And save your child’s health. Dr. Molly Ferguson: Absolutely. Raena Morgan: Thank you very much. Dr. Molly Ferguson: You’re welcome.