Bottled Breast Milk vs Breastfeeding : Is There A Difference?

Health experts have long promoted breastfeeding as best for babies' health.  But what if breast milk is placed in a bottle.  Does that make a difference? Breastfeeding advocates definitely think so.

Breastfeeding Is Still The Best Option, Research Shows

New moms are choosing pumped breast milk in bottles rather than directly breastfeeding their babies.  However, researchers on a new study said that moms don't understand the benefits of feeding babies breast milk directly from their breast.  The study surveyed more than 2,000 new moms about their feeding practices and found that in just a short time span, moms begin to increasingly rely on bottles. 

Marie Tarrant of the University of British Columbia, author of the study, said: "Breastfeeding is the unequalled method for feeding infants.  It has been previously determined that breastfeeding is important for nutrition, immunology, growth and development of infants and toddlers. Anything that contributes to shortening the recommended six months of exclusive breastfeeding is a concern."

Bottle-Feeding Increases Risk For Respiratory Issues

In a press release, Tarrant said: "New mothers may believe there is no difference between expressed breast-milk feeding and direct feeding at the breast.  Although expressed breast-milk feeding provides greater benefits than infant formula, bottle-feeding may increase the risk of respiratory issues, asthma, rapid weight gain and oral diseases."

Aside from all the health benefits your baby gets from breastfeeding, it also provides a closeness and comfort that strengthens the bond between mother and child.  It also contributes to better health for moms.  Researchers at Oxford University conducted a study which claims breastfeeding is associated with lower risk of rheumatoid arthritis.

However, researchers say that this study is not meant to mommy-shame those who feed using bottles.  "No one is saying that the feeding of expressed breast milk shouldn't be recommended. It's just that direct breastfeeding is preferable, where possible," Tarrant  said.

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