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Study: Breastfeeding can ward off postpartum depression

Study: Breastfeeding can ward off postpartum depression

Researchers at the University of Cambridge have suggested the women who experience breastfeeding to their baby could benefit lower risk of post-natal depression.

The study of nearly 1400 mothers indicated that among those ones who started to breastfeed their kids there was a 50% reduction in the risk of postpartum depression.

Breastfeeding can help to relax mothers and reduce stress, so it might play a part in preventing mental health issues developing, according to the study published in the journal Maternal and Child Health.

The new study supports an earlier research according to which breastfeeding triggers the release of the hormone oxytocin and promotes nurturing and relaxation.

"Breastfeeding does appear to have a protective effect, but there's the other side of the coin as well,” said one of the researchers Dr Maria Iacovou.

"Those who wanted to and didn't end up breastfeeding had the highest risk of all the groups," she explained.

The World Health Organization always clarifies the health benefits of breastfeeding to the baby and recommends breast milk for the first six months.

Numerous studies have found that the longer women breastfeed, the more they are protected against breast and ovarian cancer.

Earlier studies also demonstrated that mothers who breastfeed their babies at least for 6 months were at lower risk of becoming obese when they got older.

Breastfeeding also plays significant role in brain development in infants while it has been associated with better cognitive outcomes in older adolescents and adults.