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Blessings of a Mother’s Breast

You probably know that breast-feeding boosts a baby’s health. But, who knew how dramatically it benefits a mother?
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Blessings of a Mother’s Breast

Article#: 1579

Man searches the heavens from his observatories and from roving satellites for answers. Man listens with big, sophisticated, electronic ears for a word from outer space—maybe even from his Maker.  Billions have been spent to probe the universe, including manned missions, and all efforts lavished with the world’s finest scholarship—yet no answers.  But it is not so with the childlike.  We have seen the invisible God.  We have heard from Him.  We even communicate with Him and His ministering spirits on a daily basis.  He speaks to us in many ways and all His conversations will match up to His Holy Book. 

With our pens, we can capture the literal spirit of a subject on a piece of paper, fold it up, and put it on a shelf for thousands of years.  When someone in the future unfolds the page, the spirit is released.  All of the Scriptures quoted here were penned thousands of years ago, but when spoken, they enter and live inside our soul.  Imagine God is living in His Book, waiting for us to allow Him to arise in our lives.  Consider John 1:1:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Revelation 19:13 speaks of Jesus Christ and says, “and His name is The Word of God.”  The Spirit of God has been captured on a page, awaiting our arrival. 

Have you yet to be born again?  These words of Jesus were captured on a page 2,000 years ago.  John 3:3:

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.      

Are you ready to believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ, repent of your sins, and have His precious blood cleanse you from all your sin and shame?  Will today be the day you release the Spirit of God inside your soul?  Come on in.  He is waiting for you.  Click onto “Further With Jesus” for childlike instructions and immediate entry into the Kingdom of God.  NOW FOR TODAY’S SUBJECT. 

GOD SAID, Genesis 49:25:

Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:

GOD SAID, Psalm 22:9:

But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts.

GOD SAID, Isaiah 28:9:

Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

MAN SAID: Our medical scientists have leap-frogged ahead of the evolutionary process by creating infant formula that is equal to or even superior to mothers’ milk.  We are elevated above such base bodily functions. 

Now THE RECORD: Carnal man says “It’s not possible,” but they end up here at the very Rock of our salvation.  Malign, mock, and ridicule the Holy Book as God’s detractors do, yet they always end up here.  God’s ancient Scriptures, penned thousands of years ago, have already staked out the correct position—long before today’s vaunted science begins to understand. 

Today’s feature has been addressed on GodSaidManSaid numerous times.  Today’s medical research once again confirms God’s design and direction concerning breast-feeding. 

It’s truly elementary.

The Word of God cannot be broken.  It is the unassailable truth.  A recurring theme on GodSaidManSaid.com is that every commandment of God has inherent within it a blessing or a curse.  Because God’s Word is the truth, obeying it yields the blessing of doing the right thing.  One who disobeys inherits the curse—the result of doing the wrong thing.  That is just how simple it is.  You cannot disdain Holy Writ without suffering the consequences.  It cannot be done.  Galatians 6:7:

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

One amazing example of this principle in action will be demonstrated in today’s feature.  Before addressing new information, foundational information follows from various GodSaidManSaid features:

I am compelled to preface this article on the subject of breast-feeding with this note to mothers, who for reasons such as adoption, various medications harmful to the child via the mother’s milk, mothers who are HIV positive, or other reasons, that God is more than able to supply your child’s needs.  Be sure of this one thing: God is fully aware of your inability to fulfill His directive concerning the matter of breast-feeding.  Pray over your baby’s formula and food before feeding your child and you can be confident that God will supply that which is lacking. 

Man said that baby formula concocted by science was equal to or even superior to mother’s breast milk.  Starting in the late 1940s, breast-feeding began to fall out of favor nationally.  By the 1950’s, infant formula gained widespread endorsement from the pediatric community and breast-feeding for millions of children and mothers became a thing of the past. 

Fewer than half of American babies are fed exclusively breast milk during their initial stay at the hospital.  When the infants reach the age of six months, only 19% receive breast milk and, at the ripe old age of one year, only 2%.  Now, compare that with the global average of children being weaned from the breast at 4.2 years.  The American Academy of Pediatrics now weighs in with the recommendation that, for the baby’s optimal health, a mother should breast-feed for at least a full year.  The benefits of breast-feeding for mother and child are staggering.  The list is long and ever-increasing.

A growing body of evidence now shows that DHA, which is a fatty acid, is the essential structural ingredient of breast milk.  DHA is lacking in infant formula due to a ban by the FDA.  The ban has now been lifted on DHA in infant formula, but be assured that formula will not duplicate that which is in mother’s milk.  The following is a quote from Dr. William C. Douglass on the subject of DHA:

Breast-fed babies have an IQ of six to 10 points higher than formula-fed babies.  Scientists and nutritional experts attribute this to DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid that’s an essential structural component of the brain and retina.  It’s found naturally in mother’s milk. 

During the last trimester of pregnancy is when the mother transfers to her baby much of the DHA needed for the development of his or her brain and nervous system.  The DHA content of the mother’s diet reflects in the amount of DHA passed on to the baby.  If the baby is not breast-fed at all, it also receives no DHA after birth and is shortchanged in neurological development, thus impairing mental and visual acuity.  DHA levels of premature infants are especially low, since they miss much of that last trimester and when born, haven’t developed the sucking mechanism—so they are usually bottle-fed. 

I found the following excerpt written by Dr. R. D. Russell especially exciting.  It reads as follows:

The cells in the mother’s milk not only attack bacteria that may be harmful to the baby, but apparently they have the ability to produce antibodies that destroy bacteria and viruses as well.  Evidently, the infant who is exposed to infections and nurses from its mother also produces changes in the mother’s breast.  Within hours, the next milk contains antibodies and immunoglobins to protect the baby before the infant exhibits visible symptoms.

An article in the publication called Mothering points out that mother’s milk has 400 nutrients that cannot be duplicated in a lab.  Research suggests that breast-feeding reduces the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, childhood cancer, diarrheal diseases, lower respiratory illness, ear infections, bacterial infections, diabetes, infant botulism, Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis, and cavities.

Imagine, the following lead paragraph was found in an article in Discover magazine titled “Got Cancer.”  It reads as follows:

When Cathatrina Svanborg and her research associates began mixing mother’s milk and cancer cells together seven years ago, she wasn’t looking for a cure for cancer; she was after a way to fight germs.  Nevertheless, the physician and immunologist at Lund University in Sweden has discovered that a previously taken-for-granted component of ordinary human breast milk compels cancer cells—every type of cancer cell tested—to die.  [End of quote]

The following paragraphs are from Health Daily News. The title of the October 29, 2008 report is, “Breast-Fed Baby May Mean Better Behaved Child:”

Add yet another potential benefit to breast-feeding:  Fewer behavioral problems in young children.

Parents of youngsters who were breast-fed as infants were less likely to report that their child had a behavior problem or psychiatric illness during the first five years of life, a new study found. 

And the likelihood of mental health issues decreased in proportion to the duration of breast-feeding, meaning that a child who had been breast-fed for a year was less likely to have behavior problems than a child who had been breast-fed for just two months. 

Previous research has shown that breast milk offers numerous benefits for babies and that breast-feeding can benefit both mother and infant.  Babies who are breast-fed are less likely to suffer from ear infections, diarrhea, pneumonia, wheezing, and bacterial and viral illnesses, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).  Research has also linked breast-feeding with a reduced risk of obesity, diabetes, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and certain cancers, according to the AAP.

For mothers, breast-feeding helps the uterus quickly return to its pre-pregnancy shape and helps burn additional calories, which can help get rid of extra pregnancy weight, the AAP reports.  Additionally, breast-feeding is believed to help nurture the mother-child bond.

The new study reviewed more than 100,000 interviews of parents and guardians of children between the ages of 10 months and 18 years who participated in the National Survey of Children’s Health. 

Parents of children who were breast-fed were 15% less likely to be concerned about their child’s behavior, compared to formula-fed infants.  And the breast-fed children were 37% less likely to have a medically diagnosed behavioral or conduct problem, according to the study.

And, Knutson (a resident in the department of psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston) said, the effect of breast-feeding appeared to be cumulative, with those who were breast-fed for a longer duration even less likely to have behavioral problems.

She also said the study found “a correlation between breast-feeding and cognitive development.”

“These findings are certainly intriguing,” said Dr. Debra Bogen, a pediatrician in the division of general academic pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.

The study adds to the “overwhelming evidence that women should, if they can, offer breast milk to their babies,” she added.  [End of quote]

The following short paragraph is from USA Weekend:

You probably know that breast-feeding boosts a baby’s health.  But, who knew how dramatically it benefits a mother?  I didn’t until I read a new Swedish study of 18,326 women, showing that mothers who breast-fed infants for 13 months or more were about half as apt to develop rheumatoid arthritis as those who did not breast-feed.  Breast-feeding for one to twelve months reduced RA risk 26%.  Experts can’t fully explain the surprise, but they note that breast-feeding can change levels of immune-regulating hormones in ways that may discourage RA.  There’s more:  A large analysis last year concluded that breast-feeding also might protect mothers against type 2 diabetes and breast and ovarian cancer.  [End of quote]

From the GodSaidManSaid feature Info Briefs II:

In a December 2006 issue of Science News, under the title “Milk Therapy,” the following paragraphs were found:

When scientists started analyzing breast milk, they found that the third-largest constituent of breast milk, making up about 1 percent by volume, is a mixture of indigestible sugars known as oligosaccharides.  Many of these sugars occur only in human milk. 

Initially, the scientists thought that these were useless by-products of milk production.  But why would mothers expend so much energy creating compounds that their babies can’t use? 

In the past few years, scientists have solved this puzzle.  David Newburg, of Massachusetts General Hospital in Charlestown and his colleagues genetically engineered mice to produce oligosaccharides in their milk.  He then gave their pups campylobacter, a bacterium that causes diarrhea.  The pups that drank oligosaccharides didn’t get sick. 

Unlike the antibodies that mothers pass along to their infants through breast milk, oligosaccharides can protect the baby from pathogens to which the mother has never been exposed. 

For a pathogen to infect a person via the digestive tract, it first has to latch on to the sugars that line the gut wall.  Oligosaccharides have binding sites that are identical to the ones on the gut-wall sugars, so the pathogens attach to the oligosaccharides instead of to the lining of the gut.  Once bound to oligosaccharides, pathogens travel harmlessly through the intestinal tract.

Lactoferrin is a dazzling multitalented protein.  In breast-fed babies, it can appropriately suppress inflammation or boost immune activity.  It also fights viruses, bacteria, and fungi.  Even after the protein has broken down in the gut, the fragments fight urinary-tract infections as they are expelled from the body. 

Because lactoferrin lowers the immune system’s inflammatory overreactions, it may be useful against arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and septic shock.

The many claims for lactoferrin’s capabilities “may look suspicious,” admits Michal Zimecki, an immunologist at the Polish Academy of Sciences in Wroclaw.  Lactoferrin “seems like a golden bullet, but it really is so.” [End of quote]

June 25, 2013, the headline in LiveScience reads, “Breast-fed children more likely to climb the social ladder.”  Several paragraphs follow:

The researchers looked at about 34,000 people in the U.K., either born in 1958 or in 1970, and compared their social class at the age 33 or 34 with that of their fathers when they were children.  Among the study participants, those who had been breast-fed were more likely to have moved up the social hierarchy in adulthood, which the researchers defined as having a job of higher social status than their fathers. 

The study found that while breast-feeding increased the chance of moving upward socially by 24 percent, it also reduced the chance of sliding downward by 20 percent. 

The results suggest that breast-feeding improved children’s neurological development, resulting in better cognitive abilities, which in turn helped them with their upward move in society, the researchers said. 

Breast-fed children in the study also had fewer signs of emotional stress, which could have contributed to their success later in life, according to the study published today (June 24) in the journal Archives of Disease in Childhood.

Previous studies have suggested that nutrients in breast milk improve cognitive development.  Similarly, skin-to-skin contact between mother and child has been linked to enhanced mother-child bonding, and reduced stress. 

The October 26, 2015 feature written by New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof is headlined, “The Miracle of Breast Milk Elixir is Lifesaver.”  Several paragraphs follow:

What if there were a remedy that could save more children’s lives in the developing world than are claimed by malaria and AIDS combined? 

A miracle substance that reduces ear infections while seeming to raise scores on IQ tests by several points?  Available even in the most remote villages, requiring no electricity or refrigeration?  Oh, and as long as we’re dreaming, let’s make it free. 

This miracle substance already exists.  It’s breast milk.  Current estimates backed by the World Health Organization and UNICEF are that optimal breast-feeding would save 800,000 children’s lives a year in developing countries.

That would amount to a 12 percent drop in child mortality, a huge gain. 

Infants who are not breast-fed are 14 times more likely to die than those who are exclusively breast-fed, according to a major metastudy just published by Acta Paediatricia, a pediatrics journal. 

Here in northern India, Austin and I met  a mother, Maher Bano, whose daughter has been born at home just hours earlier.  The baby was underweight and in danger of dying. 

The best medicine in this context is breast milk: Studies from India, Nepal, and Ghana show that prompt breast-feeding reduces neonatal mortality by 44 percent.  But Maher Bano said that for the first 24 hours, the baby would be given only tea with honey.  “I’ll breast-feed tomorrow, or the next day,” she said, explaining that she was following the guidance of the traditional birth attendant who had helped her deliver the baby and cut the cord. 

This is common: Worldwide, only 43 percent of babies are put to the breast within an hour of birth, as recommended by the World Health Organization.  One reason for delays is suspicion of colostrum, the first, yellowish milk, which doesn’t look quite like milk but is packed with nutrients and antibodies; it’s sometimes called the “first immunization.” 

Another big challenge: In hot countries, villagers often give infants water on hot days, or start them on food before six months.  Water both displaces milk and also is often contaminated.  (Breast milk, in contrast, is safe even when the mom drinks contaminated water.) 

While the clearest benefits of breast-feeding have to do with saving lives, there is also some evidence of other health and cognitive gains.  In Belarus, children of women randomly assigned to exclusive breast-feeding promotion scored six points higher on IQ tests than controls. [End of quotes]

Note the correlation in IQ and the Creator’s declaration in Isaiah 28:9:

Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

The headline from the June 14, 2016 feature in The Telegraph reads, “Breastfeeding Helps Premature Babies’ Hearts to Grow, Study Finds.”  The feature follows:

Breast is best for premature babies, after a study showed the hearts of preterm children were larger than those who had been bottle fed. 

The hearts of babies born early are often smaller than full term babies, with smaller chambers, thicker walls, and reduced function.

It is thought that those abnormalities occur in the first few months after birth, so scientists at Oxford University wanted to find out if breast feeding made a difference to development. 

They invited back 102 adults who had been enrolled in a study of premature babies in 1982 to check how their hearts had developed as well as recruiting an extra 102 people who were born preterm. 

Those who had been breastfed had ventricles—the large chambers in the heart—which were nearly 10 percent larger than bottle-fed babies.  The hearts of breastfed babies also beat more strongly.

“Even the best baby formula lacks some of the growth factors, enzymes, and antibodies that breastmilk provides to developing babies,” said Dr. Adam Lewandowski and colleagues at the Oxford Cardiovascular Clinical Research Facility. 

“These results show that even in people whose premature birth has inevitably affected their development, breastfeeding may be able to improve heart development.” 

Britain has one of the lowest breastfeeding rates in the western world.  NHS figures show that although around 81 percent of women begin feeding their children from the breast, fewer than one-third lasts the recommended six months. 

Researchers believe that doubling the number of women who breastfeed for between seven and eighteen months could save the NHS nearly £50 million (over $70 million US) a year by reducing the incidence of childhood diseases and curbing the risk of breast cancer in mothers. 

Previous studies have found that babies who were breastfed for at least twelve months have higher IQs and could earn an extra £200,000 ($280,000 US) in their lifetime compared with bottle-fed youngsters. 

Researchers in Brazil found that breastfeeding was crucial for setting children on the path to success. 

Those who were breast-fed for a year or more scored on average four IQ points higher on tests than those breast-fed for under one month.  They were also likely to have remained in education for nine months longer and earn around 20 percent more than the national average, which in Britain would equate to an extra £440 ($617 US) in pay each month. 

Viv Bennett, Chief Nurse at Public Health England, said: “This research adds to a wealth of evidence which shows that breastfeeding gives babies the best start in life, and it comes with a whole host of benefits for mothers, too.” 

“We recommend that all babies, including those born prematurely, are breast-fed exclusively for the first six months,” she added. 

The new results were published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.  [End of quotes]

When God’s imprimatur is on any issue, wise men and women take notice and reap the benefits of doing the right thing.  The results of disobeying God’s instructions concerning mothers’ milk are debilitating and deadly indeed.  The skeptics scream: Who is responsible for all the world’s pain and suffering?  This is simply just one example that pins the blame where it belongs.  God’s Word is a true foundation—a place to build a life that will last forever. 

GOD SAID, Genesis 49:25:

Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:

GOD SAID, Psalm 22:9:

But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother''s breasts.

GOD SAID, Isaiah 28:9:

Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

MAN SAID: Our medical scientists have leap-frogged ahead of the evolutionary process by creating infant formula that is equal to or even superior to mothers’ milk.  We are elevated above such base bodily functions. 

Now you have THE RECORD.

 

 

References:

Authorized King James Version

GodSaidManSaid, “Mothers’ Breast Milk a Miracle Elixir

Knapton, S., “Breastfeeding Helps Premature Babies’ Hearts to Grow, Study Finds,” The Telegraph, June 14, 2016

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