When I was born, breastfeeding wasn't so common. Many new moms weren't encouraged to do so, and they often felt more than a little shy about the practice (even in this day and age many people get offended when they see a mom breastfeeding in public). Too bad that back then they didn't know the health benefits of breastfeeding.
Not only does breast milk offer excellent nutrition and help protect babies from infections, but a new study shows that babies who were nursed as infants have a lower body-mass index (BMI) and a higher level of HDL cholesterol (the good kind).
What's so great about that? Lower BMI and high HDL help to protect against cardiovascular disease. This study discovered that those who were breastfed as infants were 55 percent more likely to have high levels of HDL cholesterol than those who were bottle-fed.
Also, adults in the study who were breastfed had an average BMI of 26.1. Those who were bottle-fed had an average BMI of 26.9. If your BMI is higher than 25, you are considered overweight and at risk for heart problems. Although there wasn't a huge difference in the BMI numbers, even a slight reduction in BMI can greatly reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease.
Well now I'm even happier that I chose to breastfeed my girls.