Breast Milk Goodness

Breast milk is the natural food for babies. Canadian health experts recommend:

  • Babies need only breast milk (breastmilk) for the first 6 months
  • At 6 months, babies will show signs that they are ready for solid foods. It is important to watch for these cues, introduce solids when ready, and continue to breastfeed for up to 2 years and beyond.
  • All babies need Vitamin D. If breastfeeding, Health Canada recommends you give your baby 400 IU of Vitamin D each day from birth to one year of age.

Breastfeeding matters because:

  • Everyone benefits from breastfeeding – you, your baby, your family and your community
  • Breast milk is convenient, always the right temperature and available anytime
  • Breastfeeding is free
  • Breastfeeding promotes bonding between you and your baby
  • Breastfeeding is environmentally friendly
  • Breastfeeding reduces health care costs for your family and society.

For your baby, breastfeeding:

  • Protects your baby from many infections and illnesses
  • Builds healthy eating habits
  • Promotes proper jaw development
  • Promotes healthy brain development.

For mom, breastfeeding:

  • Controls postpartum bleeding
  • Decreases rates of breast and ovarian cancers
  • Slows down the return of your period.

How you feed your baby will be one of the most important decisions you will make as a parent. Be sure to speak with your healthcare professional, a public health nurse, or midwife to help you make an informed decision.