Breast milk is produced from the mammary glands of the mother’s breasts. It is a miraculous source of nutrition: by nature always adapting its composition to the baby’s changing needs and providing a range of benefits for both the mother and her baby. Lactation is mainly controlled by two hormones: prolactin and oxytocin. Once the baby suckles on the mother’s breast, a signal is sent to the brain, which triggers the production of the two hormones. While the secretion of prolactin leads to the production of milk in the alveoli, oxytocin causes the milk flow from the alveoli to the ducts (WHO, 2009).
Mothers sometimes perceive their amount of breast milk produced to be insufficient. Indeed, hormones such as cortisol (a stress related hormone), are antagonists to prolactin, the hormone mainly responsible for breast milk production. As a consequence, these hormones are capable of reducing lactation when existent in sufficient quantities (Chatterton et al, 2000). However, a lot of natural substances exist that have galactogenic power, i.e. the power to increase breast milk production.
With all its favourable characteristics, breastfeeding can also be described as a scientifically proven miracle of nature. Learn more about the benefits of breastfeeding for both mother and baby in our infographic. Particularly when starting to breastfeed, it is normal that mothers have a lot of questions concerning breastfeeding. Therefore, our infographic with tips for an easy and successful start of breastfeeding can be used to provide guidance. Click here to download the documents:
Infographic benefits of breastfeeding
Infographic breastfeeding tips