Why is breastfeeding so magical?

I would like to discuss one aspect of breastfeeding, which I find so magical, it is almost surreal.

Benefits to baby

You will often hear that breastfed babies are less likely to get sick. They experience lower rates of asthma, allergies, ear infections, respiratory illnesses… and the list goes on. What I found while breastfeeding my babies, is that they would not really get sick at all – no runny noses, no coughing. All that while their older siblings coughed right above their little heads and I would experience colds myself. But they seemed safe up until they’d stop breastfeeding. At that point, all 3 almost instantly started several months of colds…

One of the most claimed benefits of breastfeeding is the ability for the Mom to pass on antibodies to her baby, which will help her baby fight the viruses and bacterias around him. But how does that work? I wondered how Moms miraculously knew which antibodies to produce to cure their babies…

What truly happens when baby breastfeeds

This is how the miracle happens.

As babies latch on and start nursing from their Mother’s breast, they create a suction so hard, it is nearly impossible to pull them off. With this vacuum effect in place, the process of pulling milk involves sucking, followed by the swallowing phase. As the baby swallows milk, her saliva gets pulled back into the nursing Mom’s breast – this process is called backwash. As the saliva travels back to the mammary gland, the breast milk instantly adjusts its immunological composition. The Mom is now producing the antibodies necessary to fight the pathogens detected in baby’s saliva and administering it to her baby through her milk.

Does it get any more magical?

Another amazing function of breast milk is its ability to adjust to baby’s needs. As babies start nursing, they are generally hungry. The start of the feeding will be rich milk with its main purpose of feeding the child – think liquid meal. As the baby gets fuller, the milk will become more fluid as its new function is to hydrate the baby – think drinking. During any given breastfeeding session, the milk will transform itself to adjust to baby’s needs at that precise moment.

The more I learn about breastfeeding, the more impressed I get. For those of us who decided to breastfeed our children and were fortunate enough to be able to, breastfeeding truly is a magical process, not just for the bond created with the child, but for all those amazing functionalities in place, which allow our children to survive and strive on breast milk. It can be a struggle, many of us will cry over it, but every drop of milk will be worth it for both Baby and Mom. If you are experiencing difficulties and pain with breastfeeding, head over here to read my tips to Breastfeeding Breast Care!

Posted by ourgranny.com

I am the founder of granny.com. I'm passionate about child care solutions that are a win for the families and the caregivers. With three kids and a full-time career, we are looking for a Granny to join our family and help us with day-to-day activities!

1 comment

It is so amazing! I’m so happy to have made it to 10 mos. so far.

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