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07 August 2018, 05:24 | Silvia Roy
It is the ideal food for the healthy growth and development of infants and no formula food can substitute it. Early initiation of breastfeeding can prevent deaths caused due to diarrhoea and pneumonia. "It is easily digested and the infant does not feel hungry for nearly two hours", Dar said and added mothers should breastfeed during the first six months.
The observation came at a view-sharing meeting in conference hall of civil surgeon office.
Enumerating on this to participants and health personnel at the world breastfeeding week symposium, with theme, "Breastfeeding: Foundation of life" organized by the Institute of Child Health (ICH), UNIBEN/UBTH, in collaboration with Department of worldwide and Global Studies, Mercer University, USA, Professor Eregie observed that it was a technical misnomer to refer to some entities as breast milk substitutes, as alternative food, for feeding babies.
World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated every year from August 1-7 to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.
"Increasing exclusive breastfeeding rates can avert 100,000 infant deaths annually in Nigeria and add more than 150 million dollars to the Nigerian economy each year".
When babies consume breast milk, they are less likely to develop respiratory illnesses, diabetes, and other diseases.
Breastfeeding is providing optimal nutrition and reducing the risk of disease later. Many women also fear that breastfeeding wilts their breasts, while research has proved otherwise, thereby busting the myth that breastfeeding leads to drooping of breasts. Common practices such as discarding colostrum, an elder feeding the baby honey or health professionals giving the newborn a specific liquid, such as sugar water or infant formula, delay a newborn's first critical contact with his or her mother.
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO Director-General said breastfeeding gives children the best possible start in life.
Hiwet Darsenie, Nutrition Expert in Women and Children Health Directorate with the Ministry, for her part said that the Ministry is celebrating the breastfeeding week to raise awareness among the people, and inform the significance of breastfeeding, and engage mothers to feed nutrition for childrens.
"Many women think that milk supply is low when it isn't".
World Health Organization and the United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef) confirm that breastfeeding contributes to reducing child mortality rates.
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