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FDOH Recognizes World Breastfeeding Week

By Renay Rouse

August 04, 2022

The Florida Department of Health (DOH) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are celebrating World Breastfeeding Week 2021 during August 1-7, 2022. This year’s theme, Step Up for Breastfeeding, focuses on strengthening the capacity for individuals and organizations to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.

 The public is invited to a free community program, A Breastfeeding Celebration, Friday, August 12 at Sandsprit Park, Stuart from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. The event features special guest speakers and refreshments.

Event details can be found here: https://martin.floridahealth.gov/events/2022/08/breasfeeding-celebration.html

 Protecting breastfeeding ensures:

  • Good health and prevents malnutrition, Breastfeeding has positive lifelong health effects on infants, children, and mothers such as lower incidence of respiratory infections and ear infections for infants and children and reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer for mothers.  Breastfeeding also reduces the risk of childhood overweight and obesity compared to formula feeding.  
  • Food security even in times of crisis. Breastfeeding provides food security to infants from the very beginning of life, contributes to food security for the whole family, and ensures food security for babies even in times of household or widespread disasters, such as hurricanes. 

  • Improved Economics and Reduced Inequalities. Breastfeeding can help break the cycle of poverty for families, which impacts hunger and malnutrition. Breastfeeding provides an equal start for everyone. With no additional burden on household income, breastfeeding is a low-cost way of feeding babies and contributes to poverty reduction.  Breastfeeding can also reduce costs to the health care system and employers by decreasing costs of hospitalizations, medications, and reduced absenteeism.
  • A positive impact on the health of the planet in several ways:

    • Breastmilk is a sustainable and environmentally friendly resource.
    • Breastfeeding is readily available without needing other supplies.
    • Breastmilk production does not require the use of energy for manufacturing and does not create waste or air pollution. 

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for infants for the first year of life and beyond, with the addition of appropriate complimentary foods when the infant is developmentally ready, around 6 months of age.

Florida WIC in Martin County:

For more information about the Florida WIC program and breastfeeding resources in Martin County, call 772-221-4986 or visit: http://martin.floridahealth.gov/programs-and-services/clinical-and-nutrition-services/wic/index.html