Studies say that the bacterial cocktail present in breast milk can boost children’s immune system!
What Is a Microbiome?
A microbiome is a collection of microorganisms that live together in our bodies. These can mostly be found in the gastrointestinal tract a.k.a ‘“the gut.”
Usually, two types of bacteria are found in the gut.
- Harmful bacteria that lead to infections and diseases.
- Healthy bacteria that can boost immunity and improve digestion
There should be a balance between healthy and harmful bacteria so that your immune system can fight against any diseases. If this is not balanced, it might result in chronic inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.
Many studies suggest breastfeeding your baby to be one of the best ways to boost his immune system.
- Author Meghan Koch of the University of California-Berkeley says that breastfeeding can instruct the immune system to respond to non-pathogenic bacteria that might be present in the gut for a lifetime. When the child is born, the chances are higher that the infant might be exposed to the broader world of bacteria.
- The team conducted a study on mice and found that three types of antibodies such as Immunoglobulin A(IgA), Immunoglobulin G2b (IgG2b), and Immunoglobulin G3(IgG3), are present in breast milk.
- Taya Griffin, an international board-certified lactation consultant secretory, explains immunoglobulin A (SIgA) as one of the significant immune boosters that coat the internal organs, respiratory, and reproductive tracts. It blocks the pathogens that get into the gut and protects the baby.
Why Is Breast Milk Important for a Newborn’s Health?
There are many reasons why you should breastfeed your baby. Breast milk is a natural food that must be given to babies in order to increase their energy levels. It also aids in the growth and development of the infant during the first few months of life.
- The antibiotics and microbes present in the mother’s milk interact with the immune system and support the babies’ gut responses.
- Mother’s milk has an abundance of oligosaccharides and special probiotics feed the good bacteria in your child’s gut. These oligosaccharides present in breast milk help support the infant’s immune system and digestive system.
- 2’-fucosyllactose(2’-FL) is one of the most common oligosaccharides found in mother’s milk. These benefit the gut microbiome, help in brain development, fight against infectious diseases & allergies and improve immunity power.
- The colostrum(thick and yellowish breast milk) produced at the end of the pregnancy period is rich in protein, calcium, antibodies, and other immunological components. Hence, it should be your child’s first meal as it contains all the essential nutrients and minerals.
This is exactly why breast milk is known as “liquid gold”. It has incredible benefits that could protect infants right from birth.