Because of spam, I personally moderate all comments left on my blog. However, because of health issues, I will not be able to do so in the future.

If you have a personal question about LI or any related topic you can send me an email at I will try to respond.

Otherwise, this blog is now a legacy site, meaning that I am not updating it any longer. The basic information about LI is still sound. However, product information and weblinks may be out of date.

In addition, my old website, Planet Lactose, has been taken down because of the age of the information. Unfortunately, that means links to the site on this blog will no longer work.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on or Almost 100,000 words on LI, allergies, milk products, milk-free products, and the genetics of intolerance, along with large helpings of the weirdness that is the Net.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Fewer Mothers Breastfeed for Six Months

The weekly Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report put out by The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not make for light reading.

The topics covered are still of crucial interest to those that they concern, and the current week has one that has widespread interest indeed, Breastfeeding Trends and Updated National Health Objectives for Exclusive Breastfeeding --- United States, Birth Years 2000--2004.

Fortunately, I can let the Associated Press summarize it for us.

Nearly three-quarters of new U.S. mothers are breastfeeding their babies, but they are quitting too soon and resorting to infant formula too often, federal health officials said Thursday.

A government survey found that only about 30 percent of new mothers were feeding their babies breast milk alone three months after birth. At six months, only 11 percent were breastfeeding exclusively.

Formula is not as good at protecting babies against diseases, eczema and childhood obesity. Ideally, nearly all mothers should breastfeed their babies for six months or more, said David Paige, a Johns Hopkins University reproductive health expert.


The CDC study found that rates of exclusive breastfeeding were lowest among black women and among those who were unmarried, poor, rural, younger than 20, and had a high school education or less. Those findings are consistent with earlier studies.

This year the government announced goals for 2010: getting 60 percent of women to breastfeed exclusively for the first three months and 25 percent through six months.

Breastfeeding is generally acknowledged to be particularly helpful in immunizing infants against dairy allergies. Mothers who do breastfeed the full six months recommended find that they children suffer less from dairy allergy symptoms.

Which is also a call for people to drop their opposition to breastfeeding in public. You can actually find those whose justify their opposition by saying that while breastfeeding may be natural, so is pissing and shitting, and nobody wants to see you do that in public.

The equation of a beautiful and life-giving bounty with the elimination of waste says much more about the psyches of the opponents that anything about breastfeeding. It must be terribly dark and disturbed inside their brains, frighteningly so.

Please support breastfeeding. Make it easier for women to do so. Allow them the space and freedom to do it at work. Stop embarrassing them by harassing them in public. End the sometimes all too literal old wives' tales about the havoc breastfeeding supposedly wreaks on breasts. Breastfeeding will create healthier babies and that's good for them and for everyone else in the long run.

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