A government bureau held a breastfeeding event for mothers yesterday aimed at extolling the benefits and dispelling some of the common myths surrounding the practice.
According to reports from the Bureau of Health Promotion (BHP), which co-hosted the event with the Breastfeeding Association of Taiwan, in 2004, 33.21 percent of women in Taiwan breastfed the first month after their child's birth, with figures decreasing to 16.93 percent after the first 4 months, and 13.13 percent for the first 6 months.
Room for improvement
PHOTO: FANG PIN-CHAO, TAIPEI TIMES
"These figures show that there is still room for improvement," said BHP deputy head Wu Hsiu-ying (
The World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN's organization for children, UNICEF, recommend that children should be breastfed until at least two years of age or longer. Up until six months, children should be breastfed on breast milk alone, while beyond 6 months of age, mothers should begin to add solid foods.
This dispels a common myth revealed in a survey commissioned by the BHP earlier this month, in which 884 people participated, and said that breastfeeding should not go on beyond the first 6 months of a child's life since breast milk decreases in nutritional value after that time.
UNICEF said last year that by increasing the number of women who exclusively breastfeed during their child's first six months, at least 1.3 million infant lives could have been saved last year.
Chen, Chao-huei (
She added there are no active ingredients in formula milk that breast milk doesn't have and that in fact, formula milk seeks to mimic breast milk to as full an extent as possible.
A mother who attended the event said of breastfeeding, "You know that what you're giving your child is the best, something that money can't buy."
According to the BHP, breastfeeding is not only good for the child, but also good for the mother, increasing the speed with which she regains her figure, and decreasing the incidence of uterine and breast cancer.
A commonly held myth about breastfeeding, revealed by the BHP survey, is that a large proportion of mothers don't produce enough breast milk.
However, the president of the Breastfeeding Association of Taiwan, Chen Yi-chun (
From a psychological perspective, breastfeeding also serves to strengthen the bond between mother and child, increasing feelings of intimacy and security.
A mother of two, who breast fed her eldest up till the age of 4 and is still breastfeeding her two year-old said, "Many say that children who breastfeed tend to "cling" to their mothers more. But really it is that there is a closer relationship between mother and child. When you are holding your child in your arms, breastfeeding him, there is no barrier between you."
Breast milk is also good for a number of other purposes including making soap and as an ingredient for other culinary delights for toddlers.
UNDER INVESTIGATION: Huang’s body was found just outside the bathroom and showed no signs of a struggle, and no alcohol or drugs were found Singer and actor Alien Huang (黃鴻升) was found dead at his home in Taipei’s Beitou District (北投) yesterday. He was 36. Huang was also known by the nickname Xiao Gui (“little ghost”). His body was found when his father went to check on him after being unable to reach him by telephone, and called emergency services to the house at 11am, the Taipei City Police Department said. Huang’s body, which was discovered just outside the bathroom, showed no signs of a physical struggle, and he appeared to have been dead for some time, police said, adding that no drugs or alcohol were
CONFIRMED IN PHILIPPINES: The CECC would conduct contact tracing for the migrant workers to determine if they had come into contact with elderly people or children Six Filipinos tested positive for COVID-19 upon returning home from Taiwan, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday as it reported a case of imported COVID-19 infection, bringing the number of confirmed cases in Taiwan to 500. Philippine authorities reported four of the cases through the National IHR Focal Point, while the other two were reported by the company that they had worked for in Taiwan. The six — five women and one man — are aged from their 20s to 40s, and worked as in-home care workers, domestic workers, factory workers and sailors in Taiwan, said Minister of Health and
FEELING MISUNDERSTOOD: Media speculation has fueled confusion about the KMT’s reasons for skipping a Chinese forum and delaying an AIT meeting, party sources said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday said that it is not seeking to improve relations with the US or China at the expense of the other, and that its relations with the countries would be topic-based. The party has faced questions over its foreign policy after it on Monday last week announced its withdrawal from the annual Straits Forum and delayed planned talks with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). The party has also taken a tough stance on the importation of US meat containing ractopamine, while also lambasting China for increasing its military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. Following
The COVID-19 pandemic might not have originated from a seafood market in Wuhan, China, National Taiwan University College of Public Health professor Tony Chen (陳秀熙) said yesterday. While many countries are experiencing second waves of COVID-19 infections, many are also lifting lockdowns to revive their economies, allowing travelers to cross national borders, Chen said. Academics have been questioning whether genetic mutations in the novel coronavirus in different countries have made it more infectious, he added. Academics from different backgrounds have conducted phylogenetic analysis of SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences, he said, adding that the studies can help scientists understand how the virus spread among