Dr Tunde Aromire, a consultant gynecologist with Hope Hospital in Osogbo, capital of Osun state, South west Nigeria has called on nursing mothers to make exclusive breastfeeding a priority in order to reduce infant mortality.
Aromire made the call in an interview with the Newsmen on Friday in Osogbo.
The gynecologist said that exclusively breastfed babies had a lower risk of gastrointestinal infection than a formula (infant milk) fed baby.
Aromire also said that exclusive breastfeeding always help the babies regain weight lost at birth.
According to him, exclusive breastfeeding also helps them to quickly recover from infection, cold and also protect them from sickness.
He said the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended six months exclusive breastfeeding for nursing mothers.
Aromire, however, said that nursing mother who engaged in exclusive breastfeeding needed to eat well for adequate supply of milk for the baby.
He said, “Considering the fact that the only source of nutrition for the baby is the mother’s milk, the nursing mother has to eat balanced diets to get enough milk in her breasts.
“The nursing mother must, however, be careful about her own diet and continue to avoid or limit the consumption of certain foods which can prevent proper flow of milk.’’
According to Aromire, if a nursing mother fails to breastfeed the newborn baby well, the baby might experience dehydration, which he said could pave the way for other health problems.
He said improper breastfeeding could also cause weight loss, slow growth and development in babies.
“Breastfeeding can be disadvantageous for the newborns when there is an inadequate supply of breast milk or insufficient suck reflex in the baby.