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Lealia Nelson
505-827-2184 Office

Celebrating Healthier People and Planet

August 10, 2020 - Women, Infants and Children - Blog

August is National Breastfeeding Awareness month, to show support New Mexico Women Infant Children WIC Program designed special earth-themed postcards celebrating nursing parents’ dedication to themselves, their infants, and our planet.  

The cards were inspired by World Breastfeeding Week’s (WBW) theme, ‘Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet’. WBW is an international celebration held annual, August 1-7. According to the WBW website, the theme focuses on the impact of infant feeding on the environment and climate change and the imperative to protect, promote and support breastfeeding for the health of the planet and its people.

While the decision to breastfeed is a nursing parent’s personal choice, the benefits of breastfeeding are significant for the nursing parent and infant. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC, breastfeeding lowers the nursing parent’s risks of:

  • High blood pressure
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Breast cancer

Infants who are breastfed have reduced risks of:

  • Asthma
  • Obesity
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Severe lower respiratory disease
  • Acute otitis media (ear infections)
  • Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
  • Gastrointestinal infections (diarrhea/vomiting)
  • Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) or death of tissues in the intestine for preterm infants

Despite the incredible strides we have made as a society and supporting nursing parents, we still have some work to do. According to the CDC, only 1 in 4 infants is exclusively breastfed as recommended by the time they are 6 months old. Sadly, black infants are 15% less likely to have ever been breastfed than white infants.

Breastfeeding is also an investment in the health of the planet as well as that of the nursing parent and infant. According to the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), unlike formula production, which generates greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, breastmilk is a natural and renewable food. Scaling up breastfeeding can prevent annually: 20,000 maternal deaths; 823,000 child deaths; and $302 billion in economic losses. 

NMWIC is a program with the New Mexico Department of Health that provides at no cost, healthy food, ideas for eating and maintaining good health habits, support for nursing families, and connects families with other community services. To learn more about NMWIC or to participate in upcoming breastfeeding celebrations, please visit https://www.nmwic.org/nursing-your-baby/ or call (505) 476-8800 or (866) 867-3124.

Additionally, several NM WIC clinics around the state are teaming up with the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force to host COVID-19 safe events, such as the online Native Breastfeeding event (August 13th) and Black Breastfeeding Week (August 25-31).

Presentations on breastfeeding and COVID-19 will be offered to WIC participants in late August, visit NM WIC Facebook Page. Information on breastfeeding and COVID-19 can be found on the World Health Organization (WHO) and CDC websites. COVID-safe practices and more at Department of Health’s COVID-19 Site.


Media Contact

We would be happy to provide additional information about this press release. Simply contact Lealia Nelson at 505-827-2184 (Office) with your questions.


Versión en Español

En un esfuerzo para hacer que nuestros comunicados de prensa sean más accesibles, también tenemos disponibles una versión en español. Por favor presione el enlace de abajo para acceder a la traducción.

Celebrando Poblaciones y Planeta Saludables