A team from Harvard Medical School found one year of breastfeeding was associated with a 15% drop in a woman’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Each additional year of breastfeeding was associated with a greater reduction in risk.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found the protective effect lasted for up to 15 years after a woman’s last birth.
The findings suggest that if a woman had two children and breastfed each child for a year, her risk of diabetes would be reduced by a third.
However, women with gestational diabetes did not appear to lower their risk of type 2 diabetes, even if they breastfed intensely.
The study also suggested that women who used medications to prevent lactation had an increased risk for type 2 diabetes.
Women who give birth to large babies and those who develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy have an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life.
A balanced diet and regular physical activity have already been proven to reduce this risk, but we will need to wait for the results of further research before we can see if breastfeeding also plays a part.
The World Health Organization recommends that mothers feed their babies exclusively on breast milk for six months, and continue to offer it alongside other food for up to two years.
Sub-editorDiabetes :: Breastfeeding may cut a mother’s risk of type 2 diabetes
by Sub-editor ( Author at Spirit India )
Posted on November 23rd, 2005 at 1:15 pm.
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