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Originally published August 8 2004

Newborn nutritional disaster: only 14% of U.S. mothers breastfeed their babies for 6 months

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

New research data released by the United States government reveals that only 14% of mothers in the United States rely on breastfeeding to feed their babies for the first six months of their lives. This is a shockingly low number, given the medical truth that breastfeeding is the number one way to give a baby good nutrition. Many mothers are turning to infant formulas or juice to feed their babies, which inevitably results in nutritional deficiencies, impaired immune system function, and can even predispose their babies to chronic diseases later in life (such as diabetes). Both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization recommend that mothers feed their babies breast milk only for the first six months.

But many mothers are nutritionally illiterate, and they turn to formula as a convenience. Unfortunately, many baby food formula products are made with ingredients that we know promote chronic disease. Those ingredients include cow's milk and high-fructose corn syrup. Obviously, none of these ingredients should ever be fed to infants, nor technically should be fed to adults either. To make matters even worse, infant formula is nutritionally imbalanced for human consumption, meaning that it will promote nutritional deficiencies in babies who rely on formula.

I remain a firm believer in the concept of preventing chronic disease and reducing long-term health care costs in the United States by educating expectant mothers and new mothers about nutrition. We can prevent literally billions of dollars in future health care costs by investing a few million dollars in education. If expectant mothers only knew how simple it is to get nutrition that can greatly enhance the health of their unborn children, we could witness a powerful change in the nutritional practices of those expectant mothers -- and as a result see a new generation of healthy babies being born in the United States. These babies would have fewer behavioral disorders, higher levels of intelligence, lower death rates, stronger immune systems, and so on.

Remember, it should be common sense here -- nature intended babies to drink their mother's milk. That is obviously why mothers produce breast milk in the first place. The mammary glands have an important function, and it is absurd that as a society we ignore this natural food source for newborn babies. Note also that newborn human babies have no instinct to seek out a four-legged furry creature and attempt to extract liquid milk from the mammary glands of that four-legged creature, yet this is exactly what parents are doing to their children when they feed them cow's milk. Once again, cow's milk is nutritionally imbalanced for human consumption, which is why babies were not born with instincts to seek out cows and drink their milk.

Remember, the infant is pre-wired for survival. It instinctively knows what it needs to be drinking and eating in order to survive, and good health means good survival. If a baby wants to breastfeed, that's a pretty strong indication that breastfeeding is the way to go.


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