Essay - Breastfeeding Introduction Child Malnutrition is One of the Most Widespread...

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Child malnutrition is one of the most widespread problems ***** world faces until now. It has been associated to high rates of morbidity and mortality among children in the develop*****g countries. Child ***** has been associated with a number of f*****ctors that can be addressed by the society. Some ***** these are poverty and the family's socio-economic status, availability of food and poor diet, immunization, ***** breastfeeding practice (Brenna, McDonald, Shlomowitz, 2003). In fact, exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months could decrease mortality among children younger than 5 years old to 13% (UNICEF, 2007). South Asia has the highest morbidity and ***** rates among ***** younger than 5 ***** old: 70 million children younger than 5 years are from South Asia, and are unlikely ***** achieve their full growth and development (South Asia Breastfeeding Partners Forum, 2007).

Breastmilk may potentially contribute to the infant's physical, cognitive, and emotional development. Breastfeeding protects the infant from contracting many common childhood diseases such as chronic diarrhea, pneumonia; developing autoimmune *****, tooth decay, ***** ***** retardation (Bhandari, Bahl, Mazumdar, Martines, Black, and Bhan, *****; Brennan et al., 2003). It *****so facilitates ***** ***** the gastrointestinal tract while facilitating the absorption and digestion of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates found in foodstuffs (Gabbe, Niebyl, and Simpson, 2007; Rakel and Bope, 2007). It also lowers ***** risk ***** cardiovascular diseases ***** obesity as these ***** become older. It strengthens maternal-***** bonding, an activity which is profoundly important to a child's emotional development. ***** is also economically beneficial because it ***** free. Breastmilk contains sufficient nutrients and provides immunologic components such as antibodies that are passively transferred from the mo*****r. The mother also benefits from breastfeeding as it provides a natural contraceptive effect. ***** mother is ***** protected from rapid involution of the uterus, bre*****t ***** endometrial cancers, and diabetes (***** et al., 2007).

Despite its well-founded benefits, breastfeeding rates remain low in *****l parts of the world. The introduction of breastmilk within 1 hour *****s low among South *****n countries. In Afghanistan, breastfeeding is not introduced during the first ***** of feeding; in *****, Afghan babies ***** given breastmilk only as early as 4 months old (World Health Organization [WHO], 2001; South Asia Breastfeeding Partners Forum, 2007). It ***** been found that *****5% of *****s ***** infants breastfeed *****ir children during the first 6 months (*****, 2007). *****re have also ***** inconsistencies with regards to the right time supplementary solid foods should be introduced. In Bangladesh, it was found ***** ***** median duration ***** exclusive ********** ***** 3.7 months with n***** 70% of the mothers introducing milk supplements prior to ***** months. Most mothers also exclusively breastfeed their ***** for over 30 months (Ramachandran, 2004). In *****dia, breastfeeding practices were found to be almost similar to practices in Bangladesh and West Bengal, except that the ***** duration of exclusive ***** was 5.3 months ***** lasted ***** the median duration ***** 25.4 months. Other studies have shown that breastfeeding rate decreased ***** 72% in the


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