Kara Ghiringhelli, Department of Public Health
Kara is a Nutrition Education Specialist at DPH.
Some of you may have seen media coverage of a recent study that found breastmilk and formula to be equally good for babies, which is neither true, nor was it the focus of the research study. The findings of this scientific study were misinterpreted by the media. This made for splashy headlines, but may have misled and even scared people into believing that breastmilk is not the best choice for babies.
This recent media splash brings up an important point—before making any health-related decisions based on media reports for you and your family, first talk with your doctor, nutritionist or other respected health official. They will be able to provide you with the the facts so that you can make the best decision for you and your family..
If you read or heard anything negative about breastfeeding recently, please know that the benefits of breastfeeding cannot be emphasized enough. The World Health Organization, American Academy of Pediatrics, and American Dietetic Association all recommend giving ONLY breastmilk for the first six months of life, and continuing for as long as desired by mom and baby.
In the end, take what the media states with a grain of salt, do some research of your own and talk to your trusted healthcare provider. Treat the media as a means of finding out things to discuss and learn more about, rather than a trusted source of information.
Did the media coverage of this issue mislead you? We would love to hear about your feelings regarding this recent story.