September 30, 2010
Media Release

Breastfeeding protects!

Celebrate breastfeeding during National Breastfeeding Week, October 1-7
NEWMARKET ??" World Breastfeeding Week will be celebrated nationally from October 1st to 7th. Breastfeeding provides unparalleled nutrition to children and is the only food or drink that a child needs for the first six months of life.
 
The Regional Municipality of York Community and Health Services department, Health Canada and the Canadian Paediatric Society recommend exclusive breastfeeding in conjunction with the age-appropriate solid foods for two years and beyond.
 
Breastfeeding also provides many health-related benefits.  Women who breastfeed have decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer, osteoporosis and post partum bleeding.  They may also experience more post-partum weight loss then women who formula feed.
 
Research also indicates that breastfed children have:
 
• Decreased risk and severity of illness related to seasonal flu, especially for children less than six months of age who are not eligible for the flu shot
• Fewer respiratory and gastrointestinal illnesses when compared to formula-fed children
• Decreased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), asthma, allergies, type-2 diabetes, certain childhood cancers, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis and obesity
• Enhanced cognitive development, resulting in improved school performance and higher IQ scores
 
While breastfeeding is the natural way to feed children, it may require assistance and support.  York Region Community and Health Services offers free support and instruction to breastfeeding mothers, including prenatal classes, telephone consultation, home visits and direct one-on-one breastfeeding consultation in a clinic setting.  Breastfeeding clinics are located in the Town of Newmarket, Town of Richmond Hill, Town of Markham and the City of Vaughan. 
 
In 2009, public health nurses assisted families with 1,500 breastfeeding clinic appointments and 4,000 breastfeeding telephone consultations.
 
To book an appointment at one of the breastfeeding clinics or for more information on this or any other public health program, please contact York Region Health Connection at 1-800-361-5653 or
TTY 1-866-252-9933.
 
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit www.york.ca
 
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Media Contact: Jennifer Mitchell-Emmerson, Community and Health Services, York Region
Phone: 905 830-4444 Ext. 4016 or After-hours Cell: 905 716-9753
Email: jennifer.mitchellemmerson@york.ca

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