A new study finds that children who are breastfed are less likely to develop asthma, respiratory issues, or eczema.
“Breastfed children showed lower prevalence rates of asthma, rhinitis and eczema, and the effect of breast feeding was more evident in boys than girls. Asthma and wheeze were resolved significantly earlier in breastfed children than those who were not breastfed” – Dr Mohammad Shamssain of the University of Sunderland.
[social_buttons]The study, covering 7000 children ages 6 to 15 years old, found that babies who were breastfed for four to nine months had a significantly lower risk of developing asthma, with those nursing for seven to nine months had fewer instances of persistent coughing and wheezing. The breastfed children were also less likely to have eczema.
“Breast feeding is a cost effective approach to a significant prevention of allergic disease in children. Our research demonstrates that exclusive breastfeeding prevents the development of allergic diseases in children,” Dr Shamssain said.
The research also showed that obese children had higher rates of asthma and other respiratory symptoms, and that obese boys in particular were at much higher risk for life-time asthma. They noted that obesity is a definite risk factor in asthma in young children.
The results of the study were presented at the European Respiratory Society in Berlin last month.
Image: dao hodac at Flickr under Creative Commons
Breastfeeding has been known for some time to reduce the child’s risk of developing allergies, not only childhood allergies/asthma and allergic conditions, but ones which develop later in life as well. Plus – nursing is definately better for the environment with less energy and water use for washing bottles, less resources used for the manufacture of bottles/supplies/formula, and less waste from used containers. Breastfeeding also saves so much money!