Indore: Improper breastfeeding main hindrance in fight against malnutrition, say officials

Informing lactating mothers about the correct way of breastfeeding is again in focus as September is being observed as ‘National Nutrition Month’ by the ministry of Women and Child Development.

Raginee ChaureyUpdated: Monday, September 19, 2022, 02:10 AM IST
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Malnutrition | Representational pic

Indore (Madhya Pradesh):  Lack of knowledge about proper breastfeeding technique remains one of the biggest obstacles towards fighting malnutrition in the state, say women and child development department officials, who are in the forefront of the fight against malnutrition.

Informing lactating mothers about the correct way of breastfeeding is again in focus as September is being observed as ‘National Nutrition Month’ by the ministry of Women and Child Development. 

Meenakshi Harvansh, CDPO, Zone 7, said, “We have noticed that children who fall in the severely malnourished category and keep on slipping into the category despite treatment have not been breast fed in the proper manner in their early age.”

Anita Joshi, CDPO, Zone 6, talking to Free Press said we are unable to eradicate it because many mothers are unaware of the methods and importance of breastfeeding, which is a crucial cog in the fight against malnutrition.

Camps in Indore for breastfeeding

For the last nine months there have been 20 camps focusing on educating and informing rural women about the importance of breastfeeding. CDPO Meenakshi said that the main issue is unawareness, and that rural women consider working all day to earn wages as more important than focusing on feeding their kids properly. 

What are SAM and MAM?

There are two categories of malnutrition - SAM and MAM. Children under SAM are those who show mild symptoms of malnutrition, while MAM are those who are severely malnourished and invariably they again become malnourished even after a stay in the hospital. 

Experts Say

“Mother’s milk is a basic necessity of a child. It is important for a child to consume mother’s milk within 6 hours of birth. Mother’s milk is responsible for providing proper nutrition to a child. If the child is not fed mother’s milk properly and regularly for 6 months, there is a chance that the child will become prone to poor health in the future.”

- Dr Tarun Gupta, pediatrician and district immunisation officer. 

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