KYW Medical Report Sponsored By Independence Blue Cross

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It is a hot button issue in medicine these days: breastfeeding or bottle?

I am often asked the question whether breastfeeding is better than bottle feeding and my answer is that there is not an easy yes or no answer.

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Certainly there are key advantages to breastfeeding. The first advantage is bonding. This is special time for mom and baby. The second key advantage is protection against infection. Mom passes on a natural immunity.

But, formula is an excellent option if mom has difficulty breastfeeding or chooses that this is not what she wants to do. Infant formula comes in several brands and closely mimics breast milk.

The best time to talk about this is during pregnancy when all of the pros and cons can be looked at.

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And remember, this is not a competition. Do not feel bad if you choose not to breastfeed or find yourself unsuccessful. The choice you make is the best choice because you need to be comfortable with your baby.