August 29, 2023

Breast is Best! The Latch of Life - Why we celebrate National Breastfeeding Month

“Mothers and babies form an inseparable biological and social unit; the health and nutrition of one group cannot be divorced from the health and nutrition of the other.”

-World Health Organization

August is National Breastfeeding Month, a time to acknowledge, empower, and celebrate mothers on their breastfeeding journeys. While Breastfeeding is nationally celebrated annually in August, the benefits of breastfeeding have a lasting lifelong positive impact on mothers and children.  At Hackensack Meridian Mountainside Medical Center, our team members take pride in being a part of every mother’s breastfeeding journey. “We provide individualized feeding plans for each breastfeeding situation. Our lactation consultants work closely with the staff nurses in labor and delivery, nursery, NICU, and mother/baby to provide parents with the knowledge, support, and encouragement necessary for breastfeeding success,” quoted Megan Keates, RN, BSN, IBCLC, an international board-certified lactation consultant at Mountainside Medical Center. The nutritional, emotional and medical benefits of breastfeeding are both rewarding and astonishing.

Nutritional, Emotional and Medical Benefits of Breastfeeding

  • Breastmilk has 100% of all the ingredients a baby needs.
    • The World Health Organization states that breastmilk is safe, clean and contains antibodies which help protect against many common childhood illnesses. Also, breastfed children perform better on intelligence tests, are less likely to be overweight or obese and less prone to diabetes later in life. Women who breastfeed also have a reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancers.
    • Furthermore, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) lists other benefits including improved dental health and neurodevelopmental outcomes for children. Children are also said to have a decreased risk of SIDS, Leukemia, obesity, celiac disease and much more. Equally important, other maternal benefits include a decreased risk in Rheumatoid Arthritis, endometrial and thyroid cancers, to name a few.
  • Breastmilk provides just the right volume, nutrition, and hydration each baby needs for their individual weeks’ gestation.
  • Breastfeeding promotes attachment, the long-lasting bond between mother and baby.
  •, a site trusted by parents and pediatricians, quotes, “Breastfeeding releases hormones in your body that promote mothering behaviors. This emotional bond is as vital as the nutritional benefit. Breastfeeding promotes a growing attachment between mother and baby that will continue to play an important role in a baby’s development for years to come.”
  • This makes breastfed babies spit up less often, having less diarrhea and constipation.
  • Human milk is easily digestible.


Financial Benefits of Breastfeeding

While these are a fraction of benefits, there are much more benefits to breastfeeding. While nutritional, emotional and medical benefits are important, let’s not forget about the financial benefits of breastfeeding. Breastfeeding saves money!  By breastfeeding, you can save money and purchase the following in the reasonable timeframes:

  • In 1  month: a baby stroller
  • In 6 weeks: 1 month of groceries
  • In 2 months: a digital camera 
  • In 4 months: a year's transit pass
  • In 5 months: a new home computer
  • In 6 months: new living room furniture


Make every penny count and start breastfeeding today!

At Mountainside Medical Center, our lactation consultants, nurses and team members are committed to breaking the barriers many parents face in meeting doctors’ recommended breastfeeding guidelines. We aim to uplift mothers and families in every moment and in between, ensuring an ally of lactation support. We offer breast pumps to use in the hospital for patients who are separated from their infants and those with breastfeeding obstacles that require a breast pump to protect the patient’s milk supply. To sign up for maternity tours and/or breastfeeding classes, please register online through Mountainside Medical Center’s main website at . Once there, click on Classes & Events , which will bring up a list of classes and tour dates by month. You can read details on what classes cover and will see links to register. Only one partner is required to register, as some classes are limited to a certain number of couples. Current classes include: Preparing for Breastfeeding, Prepared Childbirth, and The Partner Plan: How to Support Your Partner during Pregnancy. Classes, dates, and times are updated each month.

Breast is Best! The Latch of Life - Why we celebrate National Breastfeeding Month
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