Archive for March, 2020

Natural Family Planning: Benefits of Ecological Breastfeeding

Sunday, March 29th, 2020

Why should every young woman, prospective bride, and expectant mother be well informed about the Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding?  Here’s the case.

For couples desiring a family, the Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding should be taught as an option. The Seven Standards are maternal behaviors that encourage mother-baby togetherness and frequent and unrestricted suckling.  It is God’s plan for spacing babies with many benefits for both mother and baby—even years after the breastfeeding has ceased. And no abstinence is required. Mothers doing ecological breastfeeding average 14 to 15 months without menstruation. To go 1, 2 and sometimes even 3 years without menstruation due to eco-breastfeeding is normal while having an early postpartum period would be an exception.

Breastfeeding is not just about nutritious breast-milk. It is also God’s plan for information and protection. A baby is born with a weak immune system, so the mother is the primary immune system for her baby. If and when a baby gets a “bug,” it is transmitted to the mother via suckling. That’s the “information” part of the system. The mother reacts, produces antibodies, and transmits them as she nourishes her baby at her breasts. If the mother gets a bug, she also transmits her subsequent antibodies to her breastfeeding baby. That’s the “protection” part of the system.  From the perspective of science, it’s a great system. From the perspective of faith, it’s a divinely designed mother/baby ecology.

The health advantages of breastfeeding are tremendous. Mothers who breastfeed their babies will likely reduce their risk of having breast cancer, ovarian cancer, anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, endometrial cancer, thyroid cancer, lupus, and osteoporosis.   Babies benefit from breastfeeding in reducing their risk of allergies, asthma, autoimmune thyroid disease, botulism, Crohn’s disease, diarrhea, ear infections, eczema, gastroenteritis, inflammatory bowel disease, leukemia, lymphoma, multiple sclerosis, obesity, respiratory tract infections, sudden infant death syndrome, type 1 and type 2 diabetes, ulcerative colitis, and urinary tract infections.  Obviously many of these benefits for mother and baby show up years later after the breastfeeding has ceased.

Emphasis in recent months has been on the benefits of breastfeeding to the environment because of the environmental hazards of manufacturing baby formulas.   In the October 2, 2019 issue of the British Medical Journal, according to UK researchers, if mothers in the UK switched to exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life, that would reduce carbon emissions equivalent to reducing road traffic by 50,000 to 77,500 cars each year.  A 2016 study “showed emissions from just six Asia Pacific countries were equivalent to 6 billion miles of car travel.” (International Breastfeeding Journal, Nov. 27, 2019)

A 2020 study showed that breastfeeding mothers vaccinate their babies against malaria because antigens against this disease are found in their milk.  As the researchers said, “the presence of malaria antigen (proteins) in breast milk stimulates anti-malarial immune defense and reduces malaria risk in breastfed infants. This would be a way to naturally vaccinate infants.” JAMA Pediatrics, January 7, 2020)

In October, a UNICEF report lamented that one-third of children under age five are malnourished…while two thirds are at risk of malnutrition and hidden hunger because of the poor quality of their diets.  Further, only 2 in 5 infants under six months of age are exclusively breastfed as recommended.  One conclusion:  Breastfeeding could save the lives of 820,000 children every year worldwide.

When a mother follows the Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding, she is likely to have an extended breastfeeding experience.  When a mother breastfeeds exclusively for six months and continues to nurse for two years as recommended by many medical organizations, health outcomes are improved.

All of the above is why I am convinced that every young woman, prospective bride and expectant mother should be taught all these benefits of Ecological Breastfeeding.

Sheila Kippley
The Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding: The Frequency Factor
Also available at Nature’s Warehouse…usually at a discount; last seen a 34% discount.


Breastfeeding Research 2019: November and December

Sunday, March 22nd, 2020

Vaginal delivery and breastfeeding lessen the number of new allergy and asthma cases in children up to the age of 18 years.  American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI) 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting: abstract A306, presented November 7, 2019.

An increase in breastfeeding and skin-to-skin care protects against sudden unexpected infant death in the first six days following birth.  Journal of Pediatrics, published online: November 18, 2019.

This study explains the harm the use of powdered milk formula causes to the environment and that breastfeeding protects the environment.  International Breastfeeding Journal, November 27, 2019.

A new report suggests that, globally, almost 2.3 billion children and adults are overweight, and more than 150 million children are stunted, and warns that undernutrition and obesity can lead to effects across generations. Specific foods are listed to eat or to avoid and the first recommendation was to breastfeed for two years. The Lancet, December 16, 2019.

Breastfeeding appears to be protective against postpartum multiple sclerosis relapses. JAMA Neurology, December 9, 2019.

Sheila Kippley


Breastfeeding Research 2019: August, September and October

Sunday, March 15th, 2020

This is the first study examining and quantifying the association between breastfeeding and childhood obesity in an African setting with high HIV prevalence. Breastfeeding was independently associated with reduced childhood obesity for both HIV-exposed and unexposed children.  Continued breastfeeding is critical to tackling the growing obesity epidemic. In the era of widespread effective anti-retroviral treatment for HIV-infected women for life, this research supports  the recommendation of breastfeeding for all women. PLOS, August 27, 2019.

This study shows that short-term breastfeeding of only 2 months supports healthy cognitive development at 5 years of age compared to infants never breastfed.  Children at 5 years had an increased overall IQ (2.00 points) and non-verbal IQ (1.88) among those who were predominately breastfed for 2 months of age compared with those never breastfed. Acta Pediatrica, September 19, 2019.

“Support for breastfeeding is an environmental imperative.  Formula milk contributes to environmental degradation and climate change.”  This is the title and sub-title of research in the United Kingdom.  The carbon footprint of formula is a major concern in this article.  Much of this is due to formula production and transportation.  One of the examples:   Helping mothers in the UK alone to exclusively breastfeed their babies would reduce carbon emissions equivalent to reducing road traffic by 50,000 to 77,500 cars each year. As the research states for UK society:  “Our house is on fire.”  I recommend this article for all.  British Medical Journal, October 2, 2019.

Breastfeeding for more than 12 months was associated with a relative risk reduction of 30% for diabetes and a relative risk reduction of 13% for hypertension. Data was analyzed from 255,000 women.  Breastfeeding may have a positive impact on cardiovascular outcomes in mothers. JAMA Network Open, October 16, 2019.

UNICEF’s report examines the issue of children, food and nutrition. The report found that one third of children under age five are malnourished – stunted, wasted or overweight – while two thirds are at risk of malnutrition and hidden hunger because of the poor quality of their diets. Only 2 in 5 infants under six months of age are exclusively breastfed, as recommended. Breastfeeding could save the lives of 820,000 children annually worldwide. The main concern is the sales of milk-based formula which grew 41% globally and 72% in upper middle-income countries such as Brazil, China, and Turkey from 2008–2013.  “The State of the World’s Children,” UNICEF, October 2019.

Sheila Kippley