Oklahoma City, Okla.(July 31, 2020) - The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) and its Women, Infants, Children (WIC) Supplemental Nutrition Program, alongside other organizations around the world, support the promotion of World Breastfeeding Week, August 1 to 7, 2020. This year’s theme, Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet, focuses on the impact of infant feeding and the health of our planet and its people.
The packaging and production of infant formula consumes significant resources, which contributes to growing landfills. Breastmilk is a natural, sustainable food that is environmentally safe; produced and delivered without packaging, pollution or waste. Besides protecting the health of mothers and babies, breastfeeding has an inherent way of protecting the Earth.
“Our WIC Program provides various levels of breastfeeding support from the peer counselor to the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant,” said Amanda Morgan, WIC Breastfeeding Education Coordinator. “We can all play a role in supporting breastfeeding families as part of a collective effort to improve the health of Oklahomans.”
According to Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System’s aggregated data from 2016 to 2018, 86% of Oklahoma mothers began breastfeeding their babies after birth. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusively breastfeeding for at least six months of age, continuing to one year of age or beyond.
Data provided in The Oklahoma Toddler Survey from 2018 indicate that 47% of mothers were breastfeeding at six months and 29% percent of mothers were breastfeeding at 12 months or more. The OSDH supports breastfeeding mothers in hopes of achieving the national Healthy People 2020 breastfeeding objective to increase the proportion of infants who are breastfed at six months to nearly 61% and at one year to 34%.