The total number of notified cases of food poisoning in Northern Ireland = 23,711
The total number of notified cases of food poisoning in England and Wales =1,378,927
Range = 2285-158 = 2127
England and wales Range = 93,932 – 19,242 = 74690
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1. The benefits to mother and baby through breastfeeding
Breastfeeding is described by the World Health Organisation (2013) as, “the normal way of providing young infants with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development”.
Colostrum, also described as first milk, is a special milk produced in the mammary glands throughout pregnancy; it is yellow in colour, thick, sticky and is the best food for a newborn infant. Although only low amounts of colostrum are released at the time of feeding, it is low fat and has a high concentration of nutrients, proteins, carbohydrates and anti-bodies which start the important role of boosting the newborn’s immune system (LLLI 2007).
The World Health Organisation actively advises that infants are breastfed exclusively for the first six months as well as continuing breastfeeding up until the age of two with a mixed balanced diet of solid food (WHO 2013).
1.1 Breastfed infants are less likely to suffer from a number of childhood illnesses and conditions, including the following, which all have lower rates in babes who are breastfed:
• Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
• Ear Infection
• Eczema, asthma and respiratory problems
• Gastro intestinal infection
• Diarrhoea and pneumonia
Breast milk is specific to the mother’s body heat, so it is at the correct temperature and readily available for the baby to feed from, releasing the required amount of milk for the baby during every feed.
Research has supported the theory that adults who were breastfed as babies are also protected from illness later on in life, due to the antibodies that exist in breast milk, such as high blood pressure, type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and childhood cancer such as leukaemia (WHO 2013).
1.2 Breastfeeding mothers benefit as they develop strong bonds with their baby during feeding. Skin to skin contact for prolonged periods of time between mother and baby additional to breastfeeding within an hour of birth also contributes to the bonding process and it is thought that this contributes to reduced rates of post natal depression in women who breastfeed.
Breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months provides the woman with a 98% protected rate from conceiving. This is because breastfeeding behaves as a natural form of birth control; however, it is not recommended to rely solely on this method and women are advised to see their GP for a reliable method of…