Read Breast Feeding Views With Dismay

PUBLISHED: 18:48 20 October 2008 | UPDATED: 10:35 04 May 2010

I READ with despair the views of the mother in last week s letters page likening breast feeding in public to defecating! Small wonder that never ending breast is best campaigns make such little headway with this sort of mindset to contend with. Only t

I READ with despair the views of the mother in last week's letters page likening breast feeding in public to defecating! Small wonder that never ending 'breast is best' campaigns make such little headway with this sort of mindset to contend with.

Only three per cent of women in this country breast feed their babies for the recommended nine months - hardly surprising with such discrimination to cope with. Meanwhile the list of proven benefits grows longer every year. Breast-fed babies are not only protected against a huge range of infections, research indicates that they also enjoy lifelong benefits, from higher intelligence to a lower risk of obesity and diabetes.

In summing up the latest medical research, New Scientist recently declared breast milk to be the ultimate functional food. As well as providing babies with the essential nutrients they need to grow and develop, it also contains hundreds of active components that do everything from targeting dangerous pathogens and boosting the development of a baby's gut to preventing allergic reactions and increasing appetite. What's more, the composition of breast milk changes over time to match babies' needs. Even better it shuts the little blighters up allowing the rest of us to enjoy our coffee and sticky buns in peace.

JACKIE PETTS

District Councillor (Ely East)

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