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25 July 2017 CE | 02 Dhul-Qadah 1438 AH
Explanation below

Hadith Explanation


Nursing Rewarded by the Millions


Rasul Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “For each mouthful of milk that a baby sucks, the mother is given the reward of one good deed.” [Kanz-ul-Ammaal]

This hadith informs us that nursing is a fantastic way to pile up good deeds for your self. Not only is it best for your Akhirah, it is also best for your physical and emotional health. Nursing is best for your baby too and the benefits of breastfeeding extend well beyond basic nutrition.
 
Breastfeeding protects your baby from a long list of illnesses: Numerous studies from around the world have shown that stomach viruses, lower respiratory illnesses, ear infections, and meningitis occur less often in breastfed babies and are less severe when they do happen. Exclusive breastfeeding (meaning no solid food, formula, or water) for at least six months seems to offer the most protection. A mother’s breast milk is specifically tailored to her baby. Her body responds to pathogens that are in her body and makes secretory IgA that's specific to those pathogens, creating protection for her baby based on whatever viruses and bacteria she’s exposed to.

Breastfeeding's protection against illness lasts beyond the baby's breastfeeding stage too. Studies have shown that breastfeeding can reduce a child's risk of developing certain childhood cancers as well as  diseases that strike later in life, such as diabetes, high cholesterol, and inflammatory bowel disease. For babies who aren't breastfed, researchers have documented a link between lack of breastfeeding and development of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

Breastfeeding can protect your baby from developing allergies: Babies who are fed a formula based on cow's milk or soy tend to have more allergic reactions in general than breastfed babies.

Breastfeeding may boost your child's intelligence: In a study of more than 17,000 infants followed from birth to 6.5 years, researchers concluded from IQ scores and other intelligence tests that prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding significantly improves cognitive development. Another study of almost 4,000 children showed that babies who were breastfed had significantly higher scores on a vocabulary test at 5 years of age than children who were not breastfed. And the scores were higher the longer they had been nursed.

Breastfeeding may protect your child from obesity: An analysis of 17 studies published in the American Journal of Epidemiology shows that breastfeeding reduces a child's risk of becoming overweight as a teen or adult. The strongest effect is in children who were exclusively breastfed, and the longer the baby was breastfed the stronger the link.

Breastfeeding may lower your baby's risk of SIDS: A large German study published in 2009 found that breastfeeding – either exclusively or partially – is associated with a lower risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The researchers concluded that exclusive breastfeeding at 1 month of age cut the risk of SIDS in half.

Breastfeeding can reduce the mother’s stress level and her risk of postpartum depression:
The National Institutes of Health reviewed more than 9,000 study abstracts and concluded that women who didn't breastfeed or who stopped breastfeeding early on had a higher risk of postpartum depression. Nursing triggers the release of the hormone oxytocin which promotes nurturing and relaxation. Oxytocin released while nursing also helps the mother’s uterus to contract after birth, resulting in less postpartum bleeding.

One study found that women who had high amounts of oxytocin in their system (50 percent of breastfeeding moms as opposed to 8 percent of bottle-feeding moms) had lower blood pressure after being asked to talk about a stressful personal problem.

Breastfeeding may reduce the mother’s risk of some types of cancer:
Numerous studies have found that the longer women breastfeed, the more they're protected against breast and ovarian cancer. For breast cancer, nursing for at least a year appears to have the most protective effect.

Breastfeeding may save mother and baby from psychiatric disorders:
Women who do not breastfeed their babies often fall victim to psychiatric disorders. Whether women even have an instinct of nurturing came into question after the abuse of children by their mothers in the west took on epidemic proportions. Despite the fact that most cases of abuse are never reported to the police, there were 2.2 million cases of child abuse in the United States in 1987 alone. Most of the abuse was committed by mothers, and the greater proportion of these were mothers who had not breastfed their babies and, additionally, left them since a very early age in nurseries and day care.

The latest research shows that babies who are breastfed over the first six months have a smaller risk of psychiatric problems in adulthood. Of patients in a mental health institute, 90% were found to have never been breastfed by their mothers. [Bache ki Tarbiat Islami Taleemat ki Roshni Mein, by Dr Umm Kulthum]

Look at how beautiful Allah’s love of us is! He (subhana wa ta’ala) has made those very things rewardable by Jannah, doing which are best for us in this wordly life too!

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