e (with 2 ff babies ages 3months & 14 months)
-should women in northern regions ff?
-do the benefits of bm outweigh the risks of ff when considering environmental factors?
-is this a valid study given that it provides little data (in the article)?
i have a few initial thoughts about things that are missing.
have they done tests to see how prevalent learning disorders are among ff inuit babies? have they done tests to see how much of these chemicals are found in the systems of both ff and bf babies? do they know how much of these chemicals are "bioavailable" in bm for consumption by inuit babies?
when i consider "environmental" factors in terms of bf, i always still find bm to be a better choice than ff. afterall, bm is a living organism and changes for baby's needs. its unclear if any "toxins" are bioavailable to nursed babies. also, if a mother's environment contains chemicals that reach her breast milks odds are that a baby living in the same environment will still be exposed to these chemicals too (even if they are ff'd).
personally, i just find ff too risky (but that's just my opinion) and i choose to bf my children (there are way TOO many benefits). my now 2 year old ds was bf'd for 17 mos, and i am currently nursing my 6 mos old dd.
However, the studies show the health benefits are with bm. I would guess that bm has properties that help the babies deal with the pollutants. Formula has pollutants also, and ff babies are probably exposed in their environment. It seems that formula having a lesser ability to help babies deal with the pollutants is a bigger negative than bm actually having higher levels.
Also, the biggest differences in bm and formula are shown with babies with health risks, such as premies. You would think those babies would be more susceptible to pollutants. Yet they benefit more from bm than healthy babies.
On the flip side, I have read of two studies that showed that the longer a child was bf, the more cavities they had. They theorized it was due to dioxin. However, it was two very small studies and their conclusion was theory. If anyone is interested in it, it is on the PP breast vs. formula debate board.
At least, like you say, BM includes "anti-pollution" factors. :-)
But I do think that a benefit to formula feeding is that you know EXACTLY what your baby is eating---it's written on the label.
Crystal SAHM to Alec(6) and Elise(5 mos next week)