Effects Of Breastfeeding On The Development Of The Immune System

1144 WordsApr 5, 20175 Pages
Breast is Best: The Effects of Breastfeeding on the Development of the Immune System in Infants Have you ever considered whether you want your future children breastfed or formula fed? After having a child, one of the most important decisions new parents face is how they want their children to be fed. Physicians recommend that infants are exclusively breastfed for at least the first six months of their lives. It is recommended that breastfeeding continues, along with the introduction of solid foods, until about the end of the infant’s first year of life. Although breast milk is the recommended dietary source for infants, it is ultimately the parents’ choice. Before making their decision, it is important that people are aware of the…show more content…
Breast milk is the best source of nutrition for infants and helps to boost their immune system. Additionally, from my personal experiences, many people that prefer formula feeding as opposed to breastfeeding often say that they believe their baby is born with enough immune protection to remain healthy. This is not true at all. I have heard people argue that during pregnancy, the mother transmits enough antibodies, or immunoglobins, for the baby’s immune system to function properly. According to Jackson and Nazar, there is an antibody called the IgG antibody that passes to the infant through the placenta while inside the mother’s womb (The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association). While this is true, the IgG antibody is not enough to support a newborn infant’s immune system. Jackson and Nazar stated that this antibody only gives protection for about the first six to twelve months after birth (“Breastfeeding, the Immune Response, and Long Term Health.”). Also, infants have an immature immune system and need additional antibodies from their mother’s breast milk to acquire a stronger immune system. IgA, IgG, IgM, and IgD are all antibodies found in a mother’s breast milk. It’s better to be safe and supply an infant with breast milk, which contains all of the nutrients and antibodies they need. The most important reason breast milk is better for an infant’s immune system is because it is loaded with
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