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Minutes after welcoming your baby to the world, you can begin to breastfeed them. The first food your baby eats is the colostrum from your breast. That sticky yellow fluid is everything that your baby needs to start their life. Colostrum has the right amounts of nutrients for your newborn. Your breast milk begins to form around 16 weeks into pregnancy. So, what are the main benefits of colostrum to babies?
- Boosts Immunity
The moment newborns escape from their mothers’ wombs and come to the world, their immune system is usually undeveloped, and they are prone to illness. They will need a defence system and the only one provided by nature is the mothers’ colostrum. The colostrum lightens with time and becomes breastmilk.
Colostrum includes white blood cells, antibodies, probiotics, and prebiotics which collectively guard the baby against sickness. That’s why colostrum is described as the baby’s first vaccine. The baby’s gut is also weak and can be damaged by other foods. The colostrum helps to provide a barrier in the baby’s gut to keep him/her safe from harmful substances.
2. It’s a Source of Energy
Energy is an essential factor for the baby’s growth. Colostrum and breast milk play provides that energy to the baby before he/she can finally eat human food. As natural as it is, your newborn also needs the growth hormone.
The first milk your baby consumes contains proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates which equip your baby with the required energy and assists them with metabolism. While breastfeeding and nursing, the mother is able to regain and recover the energy she lost while giving birth. For adults, especially athletes who want to boost their energy, they can grab a bovine colostrum bottle.
3. Protects Your Baby’s Gastrointestinal Tract
A newborn’s intestines are delicate and permeable. Colostrum seals the wholes by smearing a barrier on the gastrointestinal tract. This helps to prevent damage from foreign proteins which the mother had eaten and also prevents your baby from developing an allergy.
Colostrum also has large amounts of secretory immunoglobulin A which is an antibody that protects your baby from internal infections.
4. Helps to Establish a Healthy Gut Microbiome
The good bacteria situated in the gut is known as the gut microbiome. It’s evident that resilient gut microbiome is beneficial and contributes to our wellbeing. The type of bacteria in your gut that can easily shift towards the unhealthy bacteria and is more diverse is the resilient gut microbiome.
There are many differences between the bacteria in breastfed babies and formula fed babies. Newborns that consume colostrum in the first days of their lives develop a normal and healthy bacteria in the gut. For formula fed babies, small amounts of formula can affect their gut microbiome and increase their risks of health outcomes.
5. Boost Brain Growth
According to studies, premature babies have been found to develop brains and grow after feeding on colostrum. It’s therefore very vital to feed your baby with colostrum which is available in the first few days after welcoming the newborn.
The proteins in the colostrum help in the development of the baby’s brain, eyes, and the internal of the ears. Every single drop of colostrum carries nutrients and is essential and precious for the baby. It’s the first taste a baby feels, and it also helps the baby know their way to their mother’s breast.
Colostrum has many health benefits to newborns, but it’s overlooked. To have a healthy child and see them grow normally without major health issues, nurse your child by feeding them with colostrum and breastmilk.