Innate immunity and human milk

Source: Journal of Nutrition

Recent studies have suggested that women pass on even more health benefits through nursing than previously thought. Since babies are born without a fully developed immune system, they rely on their mothers to pass on antibodies against harmful pathogens. The compounds in a mother's milk help provide an infant's gut with the beneficial microflora that allow him/her to develop resistance to all the ingested pathogens that come with being a child.

A mother's milk has a uniquely potent combination of protective agents that literally create an innate immune system in a her child. This latest research furthers our understanding of the correlation between breast-feeding and healthy babies.