Human Breast Milk Essay

Human Breast Milk Essay

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Introduction
Human breast milk is uniquely suited to our biologic needs and remains the best source of nutrition for the human infant (Kunz et al , 1999). It provides the necessary support for the developing immune system (Goldman et al., 1994 ; Garofalo and Goldman, 1999). The powerful anti-infective qualities of breast milk are measured by decreased infant mortality in developing countries where exclusive breastfeeding is the norm (Scariati et al, 1997 ; Ball and Wright, 1999).
The human breast milk is composed of about 6% carbohydrates, about 4% fats, about 1% proteins and about 89% water. The composition of human milk is very different than artificial milk or "formula". Most artificial breast milk products use bovine milk as a substrate. The latter has more proteins and less lactose when compared to human milk (Kunz, et al ,1999). Lactose levels correlate well with brain size across species. Given their large brain size, it is not surprising that humans have a higher concentration of lactose in their milk than any other species (Newton, 2004).
From the Islamic religion point of view, although it is recommended to prolong adequate lactation for up to two years, Prophet Mohamed pointed that the milk of the pregnant women is harmful for the infants and strongly advised that pregnant mothers should never breastfeed their infants.
The aim of this study was to compare milk composition in lactating pregnant and lactating non-pregnant mothers in order to know to what extent could pregnancy affect milk composition, and how this could be reflected on both child development and health.
Subjects and Methods
I- Subjects
This study was carried out on 64 urban healthy lactating females attending the Outpatient...


... middle of paper ...


...urs in the cerebrum and 60% of this tissue is lipid (Newton, 2004).
Stopping breastfeeding , should pregnancy occurs, to avoid its adverse effect on the nursed infants may expose them to many hazards as gastroenteritis and malnutritional diseases. And so , it is our responsibility to strongly advice against pregnancy during lactation so that the newly born receives the best nutritional support to ensure its full physical and neurological development.
This is what exactly recommended by the Islamic religion to prolong adequate lactation, up to two years, to face infant's requirements and at the same time to avoid pregnancy on top of lactation with its bad effects on both the nursed infant and the fetus. It is hoped that further works will be done to study the effect of pregnancy on other milk constituents that could also possibly affect the nursed infant.

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