Western Pennsylvania Guide to Good Health
Departments Health Links Calendar Archived Issues Media Kit Contact Us
  Senior Care Senior Living Camps & Activities for Special Needs Children Ask the Expert  
  Article    
 

Moms Who Breastfeed Less Likely to Develop Heart Attacks or Strokes

The longer women breastfeed, the lower their risk of heart attacks, strokes and cardiovascular disease, report University of Pittsburgh researchers in a study published in the May issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

"Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women, so it's vitally important for us to know what we can do to protect ourselves," said Eleanor Bimla Schwarz, M.D., M.S., assistant professor of medicine, epidemiology, and obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. "We have known for years that breastfeeding is important for babies' health; we now know that it is important for mothers' health as well."

According to the study, postmenopausal women who breastfed for at least one month had lower rates of diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, all known to cause heart disease. Women who had breastfed their babies for more than a year were 10 percent less likely to have had a heart attack, stroke, or developed heart disease than women who had never breastfed.

Dr. Schwarz and colleagues found that the benefits f rom breastfeeding were long-term? an average of 35 years had passed since women enrolled in the study had last breastfed an infant.

"The longer a mother nurses her baby, the better for both of them," Dr. Schwarz pointed out. "Our study provides another good reason for workplace policies to encourage women to breastfeed their infants."

The findings are based on 139,681 postmenopausal women enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative study of chronic disease, initiated in 1994.

Co-authors of the study include Roberta Ray, M.S., Fred Hutchinson Research Center; Alison Stuebe, M.D., University of North Carolina School of Medicine; Matthew Allison, M.D., University of California, San Diego; Roberta Ness, M.D., M.P.H., University of Texas; Matthew Freiberg, M.D., University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; and Jane Cauley, Dr.P.H., University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

The research was funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health's National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the National Institute of Child Health and Development.

Return to Top



Current Issue of Western Pennsylvania Guide to Good Health AdvertiseSubscribe for FREE 2016 Annual Healthcare Guide Download a PDF version
Subscribe to GTGH

Focus

Painting With A Twist

Doterra

Legacy Medical Centers

Community Life

WR Cameron Wellness Center

Largest Selection of Diabetic Shoes

Medicare Specialists of Pittsburgh

Blind and Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh

Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children

New Story

East End Food Coop

Life Pittsburgh

Elderly Housing

Reserve This Space | Call 412-835-5796 or email goodhealthmag@aol.com


Western Pennsylvania Guide to Good Health. All rights reserved.


Send email to goodhealthmag@aol.com