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Mothers Not Informed By Doctors About Link Between Breastfeeding And Breast Cancer Risk Reduction: Study

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A new study finds that many of the mothers who know about the link between breastfeeding and a reduction in breast cancer link, breastfeed longer than those who do not know about it.

What are the other benefits of breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding And Breast Cancer Risk Reduction Link

In a new study, researchers surveyed over 700 women who have given birth at least once. Of the participants, 667 breastfed, 407 of whom already knew about the link between breastfeeding and breast cancer risk reduction even before their most recent childbirth.

Meanwhile, those who were unaware of it say that it would have influenced their decision to breastfeed had they known about it. In fact, the women who knew about the link actually breastfed longer than those who did not.

Information From Doctors

However, only 16 percent among those who did know about the link got their information from health care providers.

According to the researchers, the results of their study show that knowing that breastfeeding reduces breast cancer risk may influence mothers’ breasfeeding practices. Further, as most of the mothers did not receive their information from health care providers, it illustrates a better need to counsel mothers about the benefits of breastfeeding.

The study is published in Breastfeeding Medicine.

Benefit Of Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding comes with a number of benefits for both the infant and their mothers. Infants who are breastfed have reduced risks of asthma, obesity, type 2 diabetes, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), ear and respiratory infections, gastrointestinal problems, and necrotizing enterocolitis. For the mothers, apart from reduced breast cancer risk, breastfeeding also reduces the risks of ovarian cancer, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes.

As such, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describes breastfeeding as not just a lifestyle decision, but an investment in health.

“Breastfeeding provides unmatched health benefits for babies and mothers. It is the clinical gold standard for infant feeding and nutrition, with breast milk uniquely tailored to meet the health needs of a growing baby,” said Dr. Ruth Petersen, Director of CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity.

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