World Breastfeeding Week is held in the first week of August every year, supported by WHO, UNICEF, and many Ministries of Health and civil society partners.
Breastfeeding is one of the most important things a mother can do for her baby. It provides babies with essential nutrients and antibodies, and it helps to protect them from infections. Breastfeeding also benefits mothers by reducing the risk of postpartum depression and by helping them to lose weight after pregnancy.
World Breastfeeding Week 2023 Theme
World Breastfeeding Week 2023 has a crucial theme: “Let’s make breastfeeding and work, work!”
- The focus is on advocating for essential maternity rights that support breastfeeding, such as providing maternity leave for at least 18 weeks, ideally extending beyond 6 months, and offering workplace accommodations after this period.
- These rights are vital to ensuring women can breastfeed for as long as they choose, as currently, over half a billion working women do not have access to basic maternity provisions, and many feel unsupported when they return to work.
- During this week, the World Health Organization (WHO) will champion best practices for workplace-related breastfeeding support in different countries, industries, and employment types.
- The goal is to promote actions that enable breastfeeding to work for all working women, regardless of where they work.
By addressing these urgent issues, we can create a better environment where women do not have to choose between breastfeeding their children and their work, fostering a healthier and more supportive society for working mothers.
Why Breastfeeding is important?
- Breastfeeding is an essential practice to ensure child health and survival. However, it is concerning that fewer than half of infants under 6 months old are exclusively breastfed, despite recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO).
- Breastmilk is a complete and safe food for infants, containing essential antibodies that protect them from common childhood illnesses. It provides all the necessary energy and nutrients during the early months of life and continues to be a significant source of nutrition in the following years.
- Breastfed children tend to have better cognitive performance, lower risk of being overweight or obese, and reduced chances of developing diabetes later in life. Moreover, women who breastfeed also experience health benefits, such as a decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancers.
- However, inappropriate marketing of breast milk substitutes hampers efforts to improve breastfeeding rates globally. It is crucial to address this issue and promote breastfeeding as the most beneficial and natural way to nourish infants, ensuring their health and well-being.
Breastfeeding is important because it provides many health benefits for both babies and mothers.
- Breast milk is the perfect food for babies. It is easily digestible and provides all the nutrients that babies need for their growth and development.
- Breast milk contains antibodies that help protect babies from infections.
- Breastfeeding may help reduce the risk of allergies, asthma, and obesity in babies.
- Breastfeeding may also help boost babies’ cognitive development.
- Breastfeeding can help mothers lose weight after pregnancy.
- Breastfeeding can reduce the risk of postpartum depression.
- Breastfeeding can help mothers bond with their babies.
In addition to the health benefits, breastfeeding can also save families money. The formula can be expensive, and breastfeeding can help mothers save money on formula and other feeding supplies.
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