How Breastfeeding Benefits
The Environment

You probably know that breastfeeding has numerous health benefits for babies and their mothers, but have you ever considered how many benefits breastfeeding offers to the environment?

In honor of August as National Breastfeeding Month and August 1–7 as World Breastfeeding Week, here are a few reasons why breastfeeding is the most eco-friendly way to feed babies.

Breastfeeding Cuts Down on Waste

Formula packing, labels, and shipping boxes end up in landfills, along with the plastic, rubber, and silicon that can go into bottle construction. All of these items use natural resources in their production, as well. However, when breastmilk goes from breast to baby, no packaging is required, and no waste ends up in landfills.

Breastfeeding Reduces the Use of Fuel

If fewer mothers used formula, there would be less demand for formula in stores. Fewer formula containers would have to be transported, which would cut down on fuel usage. Also, a mother who breastfeeds would not need to use fuel to go to the store to purchase formula.

Breastfeeding Uses Fewer Cleaning Resources

Breastmilk goes directly from mother to baby, thus using less water and detergent, which are needed to clean formula bottles. When milk goes directly from breast to baby, there are no bottles to wash. By contrast, if a baby consumes five bottles a day, within a year more than 1,800 bottles will need to be washed.

Breastfeeding Decreases Dairy Farming’s Environmental Impact

Cow’s milk is the main ingredient in many infant formulas. Nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus that are excreted in cow manure can leach or run off, contaminating water resources, such as drinking water, lakes, ponds, and streams. Excess nitrogen and phosphorus can reduce the oxygen content in bodies of water, decreasing the population of fish and other seafood. Cows also emit methane gas, which affects air quality. By contrast, breastmilk goes straight from mother’s breast to baby, avoiding damage to the land, air, and soil that dairy farming can cause.

Breastfeeding: It’s the Eco-Friendly Choice

For many reasons, when a mother breastfeeds her baby, not only is she providing her infant with the best possible nutrition, but also she is helping to take care of the earth for generations to come.

To learn more about our breastfeeding products and many other great reasons to breastfeed, please visit our Breastfeeding Section.

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