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 developing countries. Child ***** has been ***** with a number of factors that can be addressed by the society. Some of these are poverty ***** 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 ***** children younger than 5 years old to 13% (UNICEF, 2007). South Asia ***** the highest morbidity and ***** rates among ***** younger than 5 years old: 70 million children younger ***** 5 years ***** 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 diseases, tooth decay, ***** ***** retardation (Bhandari, Bahl, Mazumdar, Martines, Black, and Bhan, 2003; Brennan et al., 2003). It also facilitates development of the gastrointestinal tract while facilitating the absorption and digestion of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates found in foodstuffs (Gabbe, Nie*****l, and Simpson, 2007; Rakel and Bope, 2007). ***** also lowers ***** risk ***** cardiovascular diseases and obesity as these ***** become older. It strengthens maternal-***** bond*****g, an activity which is profoundly important to a child's emotional development. ***** is ***** economically beneficial because it ***** free. Breastmilk contains sufficient nutrients and provides immunologic components such as antibodies ***** ***** passively transferred from the mo*****r. The mother also benefits from ***** as it provides a natural contraceptive effect. ***** mother is also protected ***** rapid involution of the uterus, bre*****t and endometrial cancers, and diabetes (Gabbe et al., 2007).

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


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