The following post is dedicated to those of you who crave restored hope in humanity! Too often, I find myself defeated by the state of maternal child health, but as I reviewed notes from this year’s International Breastfeeding Conference, I was reminded of the progress we’re making. Below, I am sharing unique findings,“big happenings,” and other highlights from the conference.
- An important report from UNICEF called From the First Hour of Life: Making the case for improved infant and young child feeding everywhere provides a global status update on infant and young child feeding practices. The findings are quite frankly devastating, but the report details recommendations for improvement and guides us on The Way Forward.
- An NHS England study shows that investing in maternal mental health care has monetary value.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released its policy statement Donor Human Milk for the High-Risk Infant: Preparation, Safety, and Usage Options in the United States. The guidelines state that donor human milk for high risk infants should be covered by insurance.
- The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) now recommends delayed umbilical cord clamping for all healthy infants for at least 30 to 60 seconds after birth and recognizes the plentiful benefits.
- The list of companies in the U.S. offering paid parental leave lengthens. This article deems the policies “exceptionally generous,” but maternal child health advocates might better refer to them as “necessary.”
- Human milk appears to be one of the richest sources of microRNA (key regulators of gene expression. Lots more info here.
- The combination of baby saliva and fresh breastmilk generates enough hydrogen peroxide to inhibit growth of Staphylococcus and Salmonella. Read about the science behind it all here.
- Overall, obesity remains high in the U.S., but a CDC study shows a 43 percent drop in obesity rates among children ages 2 to 5 over the past 10 years; a decline in which WIC may have contributed.
- The smell of newborn babies triggers women’s dopamine pathways, lighting up the same reward centers as drugs.
- Nikki Lee of Nikki Lee Health donated 100 percent of the proceeds made from her hair services at the conference to Hawaii Mother’s Milk in honor of the late Lois Arnold.
Help us add to this list! Please share your “happy thoughts” in the comments below.