Is it better to breastfeed or formula feed my baby?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 19,573
    Assistant Professor of Pediatrics Dr. Ann Kellams compares breastfeeding and formula feeding for babies.

    Dr. Ann Kellams: Hi, I am Dr. Ann Kellams with the University of Virginia. I am a Pediatrician. We are going to talk about feeding the baby.

    Host: Is it better to breastfeed or formula-feed my baby?

    Dr. Ann Kellams: There is no question that breast milk, human breast milk is the best nutrition for babies. We know too many things about it to not recommend it for every baby unless there is an absolute contraindication. The benefits include less infections and this can be anything from run-of-the-mill, stomach flu type symptoms to colds, ear infections and even more severe infections like meningitis and pneumonia.

    There are also benefits that last a lifetime including these babies who get only breast milk, have less obesity. They have less diabetes, both type 1 and type 2 later in life. There is a question about IQ points that is out there and not yet solidly proven. Less childhood leukemia and lymphoma. So for all of those reasons and many more that as yet are not described even, we definitely recommend breast milk.