Breastfeeding Has Yet Another Health Benefit for Moms -- Woo-Hoo!


A new study just confirmed that breastfeeding is really bad for both you and your baby. Just kidding. However, there is a new breastfeeding study, and its findings have concluded something we haven't yet heard: Breastfeeding may reduce the odds of developing rheumatoid arthritis ... in moms.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 7,300 women, ages 50 and older, in China, and they found that women who breastfed their babies were about half as likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis than those who didn't breastfeed. The study also found that the longer a woman breastfed, the lower her risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. But while the study found that there seems to be an association between breastfeeding and a lowered risk of rheumatoid arthritis, it wasn't able to establish a direct cause-and-effect link. In other words, they're not sure why this is the case.

We all know that, health-wise, breast is best when it comes to babies, so it's always nice to hear when there are new health benefits discovered for nursing mothers -- especially since, you know, we're doing a lot of work! Of course, breastfeeding is a completely personal choice, and it's definitely not what's best for everyone, but if you're on the fence about whether or not you'd like to try it, consider the fact that breastfeeding has been linked to lower instances of breast and ovarian cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, in addition to the health benefits for baby. (Not gonna lie, part of the reason I breastfed was because of the breast cancer link.)

That said, though, please don't feel pressure to breastfeed because of any of these studies -- or for any reason at all. Like I said, it's a personal choice, and while, sure, there are many studies touting the benefits for both mom and baby, it doesn't mean you're definitely going to get arthritis or cancer if you choose not to nurse. That's not how it works.

A good mom does what she feels is best for both her and her child, and nothing beyond that matters.

Why or why didn't you breastfeed?


Image via Mothering Touch/Flickr



To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

EmilyH87 EmilyH87

Too bad that didn't help my mom. She breastfed four kids and her RA is horrible.

Krystian Kaufold

EmilyH, it's saying that you will have a lower risk of getting RA. 

nonmember avatar Drea

Nice to hear it lowers our risk.

Btw I love the wrap the lady has in the pic. Where can I buy it ? If anyone knows. Let me know please. Thanks.

Ma MaBear

I'm due with our third baby in about 5 weeks, and I plan on breastfeeding her just like I did with my first 2 babies. It took me until our second child was nursing, to realize how breastfeeding was better for us, and how much I preferred it over formula feeding. I choose to breastfeed because it is more natural for me, I felt a closer bond when they were nursing, compared to the feeling when feeding them a bottle of formula. Plus it's free! lol Who wants to spend $30 or whatever amount on a can of formula every week, when we can make it ourselves? :P I chose to breastfeed also because of the convenience. No matter where we were, I could just whip my boobs out when my babe was hungry and feed them. No measuring of powder into bottles that i would eventually have to wash and sterilize, or heating up of water etc… At the grocery store or mall, my babies were in some sort of carrier or sling anyways so breastfeeding was easy and we didn't have to worry about bringing a bottle in case we shopped later than expected or whatever. I choose to breastfeed because it suits our lifestyle. :)

Mary Vance Nasvik

I breastfed my daughter because, to me, it was a natural extention of pregnancy. It didn't hurt that it was less expensive or the possible protection from breast cancer. I also never had to go through the unnatural process of drying up. An added benefit was that by 3 weeks post delivery, I weighed 5 pounds less than when I got pregnant!

Kattey Kattey

I breastfed as long as I could with DD before my supply tanked and I will with this one, too. I love all the benefits of it,  DD is 2 now and she's so healthy, almost never gets sick (I think she's only been mildly sick twice), and it was so great for me, too. I did end up having to formula feed her because my supply just couldn't keep up, but even if it's only or a week, I encourage every woman to at least attempt it before deciding you don't want to.

aajm-... aajm-momma

I tried with all four of my kids. My last one it almost killed her. Yes you read that right nursing ALMOST KILLED HER. She had a great latch and a strong suckle but because of a horrendous milk (and soy) protein allergy and a malabsorbtion issue she was not gaining weight like she should and was losing weight and her heart and lungs were working too hard she is on formula now is packing on the appropriate pounds and is slowly but surely getting healthier. I wish I had this "magical bond" that breastfeeding mothers SWEAR formula feeding moms dont have....oh wait I do have it...

IHear... IHeartCake

Breastfeeding is a wonderful bonding experience, has many health benefits for both the baby or child and mama, and is just a beautiful experience I'm glad I've had.  The first few months can be very difficult, but if you make it through, you will probably love it most of the time.  I still breastfeed my toddler, which is super easy (except during the night when I'm really tired) and he loves it, although I plan to stop when he's close to 2 years old.  I feel proud that we did this.  I recommend it and admire women who breastfeed as long as they can, although I understand why people choose to bottle feed, and sometimes there is no choice.  There should be no judging any decision of this sort, whatever the mother decides.

nonmember avatar fencepost

I formula feed my first for several reasons, plus a very bad vitamin deficanices from having severe HG for 9 monthes. Even my obgyn and the hospital nursing staff said: "It's probably for the best you stick to formula." If only my husband's family had been so understanding! But formula feeding didnt affect the bonding with my son, and my husband got lots of cuddle time with his little buddy too!

That being said, this pregnancy I am a lot less sick with HG, so I am going to attempt to breastfeed my daughter if I can. If not, no big loss! My son was extremely happy, healthy, and loved off formula so Im sure it will be the same for my daughter whether it's formula or breastmilk!

Heather McConnell

I breast fed all 4 of mine, including Tandum feeding my twins, and my RA developed while breast feeding! I'm only 24 and already suffer from it. RA is genetic so I'm not sure how they can link it...

1-10 of 26 comments 123 Last