Health.sina.com.nn reports -- Breast milk is widely considered the best food for infants, and studies have shown breast-feeding aids babies' development and reduces the risk of disease for both infants and their mothers. Moreover, according to the report published by online edition of Pediatrics on the website of HealthDay News (US) on June 13, there is more evidence that breast-feeding may reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) by 73%.
The study, carried by Dr. Fern R. Hauck, a professor of family medicine and public health at the University of Virginia, and colleagues, shows another reason for breast-feeding, especially exclusive breast-feeding. Previous research of this issue has been inconclusive, but these findings provide strong evidence of the protective association.
For the study, Dr. Hauck and colleagues looked at the connection between breast-feeding and SIDS by doing a meta-analysis of 18 studies. Their analysis showed that for infants who received any amount of breast milk for any time period, there was a 60% reduction in the risk of SIDS. When the researchers took into account other factors such as socioeconomic status, smoking and infant sleep position, the reduction in the risk of SIDS dropped to 45%. However, when the researchers looked at the reduced risk of SIDS among infants who were exclusively breast-fed, the risk was reduced by 73%. Dr. Hauck explained the reasons of breast-feeding can reduce the risk of SIDS, first, breast-fed infants more easily to be awaken during sleep, this may be due to the infants’ need to be nursed, which may interrupt sleep. Second, breast-fed infants have fewer bouts of diarrhea and upper and lower respiratory infections, which are associated with vulnerability to SIDS. Moreover, there are benefits of breast milk to immune system at a time when infant’s own immunity is still developing and the immunity the infant received from the mother is waning, which may also play a role in reducing the risk of SIDS.
Date: June 14, 2011