Breastfeeding Better for Kids' Lungs
Filed under: Opinions
According to a new report, children who breastfeed have an edge over those who don't -- at least where their lungs are concerned. Kids who were breastfed for at least four months had stronger lungs than those who were bottle fed. The theory behind all this? Well, it's not the breast milk itself, per se -- although we have more than enough information on all the unique nutritive goodies in it. According to researchers, the act of suckling increases lung capacity.
In the study, over 10,000 children aged ten were tested for lung function. Thirty-nine percent were breastfeed for four months or more, 40% were breastfeed for less than four months and 21% were bottle fed. Of those given basic tests, those who were breastfed for over four months had stronger lungs.
I specifically recall my pediatrician telling me that breastfeeding is hard work for both the mommy and the baby, especially with newborns. It requires a lot of exercise that can wear the baby out. She was telling me this because it was important to get my little one up at night or not let her sleep too long during the day when it was time to breastfeed. So perhaps there is something to this theory after all. If the art of suckling is physical activity, then it would make sense that babies who engage in that activity would have stronger lungs.