Bottle-feeding is more popular in low-income areas of the UK, it is in these areas this study would like to offer up to 200 quids worth of shopping vouchers for those who choose to breastfeed instead of bottle-feed. Through this the study hopes to find out whether financial incentive can overcome cultural, negative attitudes towards breastfeeding.
The leader of the project, Dr Claire Relton said: "The vouchers are a way of acknowledging the value to babies, mums and society of breastfeeding." No doubt many mothers in these low-income area would find the vouchers useful, making the study hard to simply dismiss outright.
Professor Mary Renfrew of Dundee University is advising the study. She observed in The Guardian that attitudes currently seem to take priority over anything else when it comes to breast milk: "A woman from a young, white low-income area will often tell you it is embarrassing to breastfeed in public or even in her own home. We know that is the community norm...Women have even told us it is immoral because breasts have been very sexualised. They think they might be open to the gaze of people who think they are doing something wrong."
It is arguable, being placed in the Western world, even those who weren't breastfed will go on to be stuffed full of nutrition. Living in Belgium I noticed many of the TV ads fretted about children getting enough calcium and suggested they ate more Kinder products. Here in the UK we just want to trick them into eating brown bread. HA HA there's grain in that refined sugar loaf, SUCKER!
With some sad exceptions (possibly on the increase), children will not go hungry. In fact while commuting during half term I felt sorry for the children I saw, none of whom were allowed to go more than 5 minutes without having falafel or crisps poked into their mouths - is this a new thing? 8 year olds don't feed themselves any more?
Here in the UK we just want to trick them into eating brown bread. HA HA there's grain in that refined sugar loaf, SUCKER!
Well SMA is expensive but it's not "PRECIOUS." Although it is also promoted with a similar rhetoric. You want to give baby the best start, right? Professor Mary Renfrew recently authored a Unicef report that found breastfeeding protects babies from gut and respiratory problems, ear infections and necrotising enterocolitis.
In her autobiography Bossypants Tina Fey wrote wittily about how she 'didn't love her baby enough' to breastfeed. Or rather she and her baby could not get the hang of breastfeeding in spite of plenty of medical assistance. "When people say, 'You really, really must' do something, it means you donât really have to. No one ever says, 'You really, really must deliver the baby during labor.' When it's true, it doesn't need to be said."
I want babies to all have a good start. But I also want mothers to be given confidence and support. Else we might as well reduce ourselves to 'oh you didn't blast classical music at your belly during your pregnancy? Oh, well forget it then - that'll be no Baby Einstein.'