Amazing as it sounds, the simple act of breastfeeding a new born baby is the first step towards a healthy human and has a huge impact on the health of an individual throughout their lifetime. As per UNICEF, putting the baby to the breast also provides them with the essential nutrients, antibodies and skin to skin contact with their mother that protects them from diseases. A delay in this first critical contact not only decreases the newborn’s chances of survival, it limits milk supply and reduces the chances of exclusive breastfeeding. The metabolic system, immunity system, allergic tendencies, and formative nutrition are dependent on consuming breast milk in the first 2 years of life.
The world alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) was formed in 1991 to act on the Innocent Declaration (1990) to protect, promote and support breastfeeding. A day dedicated to breastfeeding was suggested to be marked in the calendar of international events.
The idea of a day’s celebration was later turned into a week. Every year more than 170 countries participate in the world breastfeeding week. Apart from the health advocacy, the initiative also promotes having breastfeeding friendly public places and work places for new mothers.