As Nigeria kicked off activities for the 2023 World Breastfeeding Week, nutrition experts have tasked mothers on optimal breastfeeding, saying breastfeeding does not make breasts sag.
The experts made this assertion during a media orientation on optimal breastfeeding in commemoration of the 2023 World Breastfeeding Week (WBW), with the theme: “Enabling Breastfeeding: Making a Difference of Working Mothers” in Abuja.
The head, infant and young child feeding, nutrition division, Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH), Dr Temidayo Odebunmi, stressed the importance of optimal breastfeeding in the life of a child, while dispelling the misconceptions around breastfeeding.
She said certain factors, including pregnancy, can cause changes in a woman’s breast but not necessarily breastfeeding as believed by many.
“Breastfeeding does not cause breast sagging, rather certain factors like lack of exercise, poor diet, not wearing bra, age and others can affect the firmness of breast,” she said.
Also, the chief scientific officer, social behavioural change communication (SBCC), FMoH, ,Mrs Grace Mogekwu, highlighted the importance of optimal breastfeeding practice for the first one hour after birth.
She said the use of infant formula is not encouraged except on rare occasions, where necessary due to some factors. “And when it is introduced, it must be practiced under strict hygiene,” she added.
The deputy director, Nutrition International, Mr Babajide Adebisi, urged parents to adhere to optimal breastfeeding practices to ensure a child gets the required nutrients.
He also called on employers to create a conducive work environment for parents to promote proper breastfeeding.
The director, public communication and national orientation, Federal Ministry of Information, Culture and National Orientation, Mr Sunday Baba, said the training was to support the food and nutrition media team with skills to promote nutrition in the country.
He, therefore, encouraged the media team to use their various platforms to encourage breastfeeding, towards addressing the issue of malnutrition and other health challenges affecting women and children.