Breastfeeding lowers cholesterol in adult life
Breastfeeding lowers cholesterol in adult life according to a recent multi-author, multi-centre study by Dr Christopher G Owen and associates. Babies who are breastfed for at least six months were found to have lower cholesterol levels in adult life. This study analysed the data of over 17,000 adults and found that those who were exclusively breastfed had lower cholesterol than those who were fed only on formula feeds. The study summarised information from 12890 breastfed and 4608 formula-fed subjects. It was a systematic review of 17 research papers and was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition . Even those who were only partially breast fed also had lower cholesterol levels in adulthood. If this lower cholesterol levels are translated into heart disease risk, initial breast feeding can be considered to protect against heart disease in adult life.
- Christopher G Owen, Peter H Whincup, Samantha J Kaye, Richard M Martin, George Davey Smith, Derek G Cook, Erik Bergstrom, Stephanie Black, Michael E J Wadsworth, Caroline H Fall, Jo L Freudenheim, Jing Nie, Rachel R Huxley, Sanja Kolacek, C Paul Leeson, Mark S Pearce, Olli T Raitakari, Irina Lisinen, Jorma S Viikari, Anita C Ravelli, Alicja R Rudnicka, David P Strachan, Sheila M Williams. Does initial breastfeeding lead to lower blood cholesterol in adult life? A quantitative review of the evidence. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Aug;88(2):305-14.