Natural Breast milk

By Dr Hasan Shamsi Basha

Translated by : Nassim JamalEddin Dhaher

Revised By : Magdy Abd Al-Shafy

For its factories were prepared and created  by Allah in the mothers' body, its composition excelled the composition of any other milk, in it there is everything needed by the baby from nutrition to protection, it also gives the mother a feeling that strengthens the ties between the mother and her baby. However, the percentage of natural breast feeding in Europe and the US reached a very low level in the fifties, where a large number of mothers – due to negative advertisement- thought that artificial feeding is better than  natural breast feeding, and that the artificial milk contains elements not found in mothers' breast milk.

Many of our women in the Arab and Muslim world followed the Western example, and that led to the spread of artificial feeding and natural breast feeding become at that time an old practice. Since then studies and scientific research continued in Europe and the US that proved a single truth that is: Breast Milk is Best.

It shouldn't be strange to see well known medical experts in the world spreading their research, and writing  studies  about the advantages of breast milk.

Professor Ruth Lawrence[1], of Rochester University who is an expert in Neonatalogy says: "Women ought to know that breast milk is the best nutrition for the baby. Despite the fact that medical science has improved, it still has not been able to, in any way whatsoever,  produce an equivalent to breast milk, and there isn't on the face of Earth a biological composite equivalent  able to substitute breast milk completely".

Professor Boresden says: "If mammals need their mother's breast milk and a close physical connection with the mother for several years, then human babies should have the priority in receiving their mother's breast milk with all its advantages for four years".

Allah the Exalted says what means in the Holy Quran what means  {Mothers shall suckle their children for two whole years; (that is) for those who wish to complete the suckling.} Al-Baqara verse no. 233

The West has awakened to this fact recently, and the medical media in Europe and the US started notifying women about the importance of returning back to natural breastfeeding.

The Lancet (www.thelancet.com), a famous British medical magazine published an article asking the author: “why isn't the return to breastfeeding go at a higher rate than it currently is, despite the majority of medical opinions supporting the importance of breast milk and its prevalence over artificial milk”.

The author cites the reason for the aforementioned to be the control of artificial milk manufacturers over many organizations that are involved in children matters, and the large scale advertisement done by those manufacturers to convince mothers, despite being a big false truth less lie, that artificial milk supersedes breast milk.

In a time when the use of artificial milk is getting more common in our Islamic and Arab countries, we find that the British Govt. had made, thirteen years ago, an order that bans those companies from advertising the various types of artificial milk and thereafter those ads. disappeared completely from television and other media in Britain.

The Lancet also published an article with the following:

95% of mothers are able (if they desire) to breastfeed their newborns for a period of 4 to 6 months and they are able to, in this period of time, provide enough milk for their newborns to grow in a natural way.

Some women are able to breastfeed (without the need for artificial milk)their newborns for a period of at least twelve months or more. Babies who are fed artificial milk are more likely to suffer stomach and intestinal infections.

A report for the W.H.O. (World Health Organization) showed discontent with the situation in the third world where artificial milk is accepted in the time where Europe and the USare diminishing its use.

The author says: “The use of artificial milk is constantly increasing in the third world even though there are some dangerous implications to that on the child’s health”. And adds: “Companies producing artificial milk are competing through marketers who are advertising for those products in various ways”. The author also warns those companies that the world will wake up sooner or later and return to the use of natural breast milk, and that they (the companies) should not expect a growth in sales.

Professor Lawrence says: “Even though natural science has had great strides in the area of nutrition, it has only been able to imitate just a few properties found in breast milk. There are more than one hundred enzymes in mothers breast milk, all of which are not available artificial milk. Mother’s natural milk contains special antibodies and protection against spoilage unavailable in any other type of nutrient.

Professor Lawrence finished her article asserting: “There is no biological compound on Earth that is able to replace breast milk, secure live cells, provide effective enzymes, guard against infections, and other psychological advantages”.

Dr. Peny Stanway author of the book “Breast Is Best” [2] says : “there is o doubt that breast cancer , which is the most common cancer among women, has become more common during the past two decades and scientists estimate that one out of every twenty women in the West dies of breast cancer, and also one out of every four women complains about one of the several breast disorder (disease) in her lifetime”.

Why is such high frequency? And why is this happening to women's breasts?

Dr Stanway answers: “ it is highly probable that women treat the breast in an unnatural way and disobey the natural duty of the breast, which is nursing. Women deny their breasts the natural and main role (breast feeding), they then pay a very expensive cost by catching related diseases or disorders. Breast feeding is the most important tool used for birth control around the globe, where Menstruation process is biologically suspended  during the period of suckling ; it is known that uterine cancer has a strong relationship with breast cancer. It is probable that those large number of  menstruation  that women go through in their lives (average of about 450) have effects on the uterus, since every month the breasts and the uterus go through physiological and anatomical changes, and the female’s reproductive system becomes ready for oval fertilization and thereafter fetal formation”.

In our modern life, only one or two females ova are fertilized since women usually give birth to just one or two children during complete lifetime while their bodies go through an average of four hundred and fifty menstrual cycles, so the great majority of those menstrual processes go useless (ie no ovum is fertilized). The body goes through a lot of changes without pregnancy year after year but with only one or two probable pregnancies and this might be a reason for reproductive system disorders”.

This is was what Dr. Stanway said in his book, and in this he is talking about the women of modern era, when they try not to give birth to more than one or two children, and by doing so they subject their reproductive organs to such disorders and diseases.

Prophet Mohammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)  said: “ Marry the loving , the bearer of children, I'm indeed proud of your  number profusion” Narrated by Abu Dawood and An-nisaa’I, Saheeh Aljame As-sagheer 2940. 

Dr. Stanway also says: “Breast and Uterine Cancer are really common where one of every five women ends getting her uterus removed sometime in her lifetime. Women should get pregnant early in her life after puberty, and it has been shown that when a women has her first child in an early age before twenty, she takes one of the most important measures in the prevention of Breast Cancer. Women’s reproductive system says for a period of 12 to fifteen years unable to bear the first child until menstruation, and if we decide to continue barring this system from bearing children then we will put our women into a lot of problems”.

Regarding the period of breast feeding, Dr. Stanway says: “it might be enough for the infant to breast-feed for a period of eight months in the Western society, but in regards to the mother’s advantage, all the reasons are available for the mother to continue breast feeding even if the baby reaches an age where he/she is able to get the necessary nutrients from other types of food. Continuous nursing through the nipples stimulate hormones in the mother that prevent the release of an ovum from the ovary to the uterus for several months”.

“Henceforth nursing doesn't only function as a natural birth control, but also suspends the monthly changes in the menstrual period which relaxes the reproductive system from such burden.”

The Late Sayid Qutub (may Allah bless his soul) said in his book In the Shade of Al-Quran[3]:”Allah obligates for the baby that his mother nurse him for a period of two years because Allah the Exalted knows that this period of time is the optimal time considering all the physical and psychological aspects for the baby (for those who wish to complete the period of nursing). Research on health and psychology prove that a period of two years is necessary so that a baby grows in a healthy manner.

[1]Ruth A. Lawrence, MD, Neonatology , http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/gchas/s_f/LAWREN_R.HTM

[2] http://www.amazon.co.uk/Breast-Best-Penny-Stanway/dp/0330436309

[3] In The Shade of Al-Quran (1/248)

To contact the auther Dr. Hassaan Shamsi Basha : hpasha@hotmail.com