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Experts Want To Stop Calling Breastfeeding Natural

Experts Want To Stop Calling Breastfeeding Natural

An article in the journal Pediatrics is calling on health professionals to stop saying that breastfeeding is natural.

The authors argue that calling breastfeeding ‘natural’, which it is, gives the impression that natural parenting practices are healthier.

A public campaign has also been started to end the positive use of the word ‘natural’, alleging that it is linked to “problematic” practices like home birthing, homeschooling and the rejection of GMO food and even vaccinations.

‘Experts’ warn that when federal and local health departments use the term “natural” to promote breast-feeding, it could inadvertently fuel concerns over other aspects of health and society that are seen as “unnatural,” such as vaccines and genetically modified foods

The Examiner reports:

In the article, Unintended Consequences of Invoking the “Natural” in Breastfeeding Promotion, Jessica Martucci and Anne Barnhill, Medical Ethics and Health Policy researchers at Penn Medicine, wrote:

Building on this critical work, we are concerned about breastfeeding promotion that praises breastfeeding as the “natural” way to feed infants. This messaging plays into a powerful perspective that “natural” approaches to health are better… Promoting breastfeeding as “natural” may be ethically problematic, and, even more troublingly, it may bolster this belief that “natural” approaches are presumptively healthier.

The authors are especially concerned that promoting natural practices such as breastfeeding will harm vaccination rates, since many parents who follow natural parenting practices also delay or decline vaccines for their children. Thy also cite other examples of the “fallacy” that natural choices are intrinsically better, including the rejection of GMO foods, the preference for organic over conventionally grown foods and concerns over water fluoridation.

Apparently the risk of giving the impression that natural choices can ever be positive choices is so great, that the authors conclude that the word natural should not be used in a positive context even if it means undermining breastfeeding. They wrote:

We should think twice before referencing the “natural” in breastfeeding promotion, even if it motivates women to breastfeed.

In a separate guest commentary at Philly Voice, the authors expanded on the dangers of natural parenting choices. They wrote:

It doesn’t take much internet digging to find some of the potentially problematic implications for a public health campaign built around an argument that ‘natural’ is better. A search for ‘natural living’ turns up a variety of sites devoted to natural parenting. Parenting blogs and natural news sites often discuss practices and ideas ranging from home-birth and consuming the placenta after birth to homeschooling, breastfeeding, and homeopathy. But these are also spaces where one might expect to run across writers and commenters expressing concerns about the necessity and safety of childhood vaccinations and the promotion of immunity through ‘natural’ disease and healing processes.

They went on to warn:

Studies have shown that anti-vaccination sentiment tends to overlap with reliance on and interest in complementary and alternative medicine, skepticism of institutional authority, and a strong commitment and interest in health knowledge, autonomy and healthy living practices.

The authors conclude:

If doing what is ‘natural’ is best in the case of breastfeeding, how can we expect mothers to ignore that powerful worldview when making choices about other health practices, like vaccination?

Pediatrics’ own breastfeeding committee condemned the message of the article, however. In a commentary on the article’s journal page, the AAP Section on Breastfeeding Leadership stated:

Let us state clearly that breastfeeding is the normative standard for infant feeding, and other feeding methods put mothers and children at risk for both short and long-term adverse health outcomes.

To be clear, breastfeeding is indisputably natural. The definition of natural, according to Merriam Webster is:

:existing in nature and not made or caused by people : coming from nature

: not having any extra substances or chemicals added : not containing anything artificial

: usual or expected

By all three counts, breastfeeding is natural. It is ludicrous to suggest otherwise. Breastfeeding is also undeniably the best food for babies.

Natural practices are often best for our children and ourselves. The authors of this paper are researchers who purport to specialize in medical ethics. To suggest that we should campaign to vilify all natural practices in an attempt to influence parents to accept vaccines or GMOs is the epitome of unethical advice.

  • commonlaw

    An “ex” is a “has been” a spurt is a”drip”

  • Chris

    Listen to the experts you filthy goyim, they would never lie to you!!!!!!!!

  • Arthur Walls

    Whoever opened there mouth to say something that stupid. Should best stay silent. Misleading is criminal or not.

    • Mirtha Barahona

      This is the way the capitalists want us to think!! They are a group of very sick people, who form part of the only imperialist and genocide elite existent in this world. They have acted in this manner, since 2000 years ago! They like to measlead us as much as possible, that it is what they do best! So they wash up our brains of our ideas, to saw in there their owns!

      Their ideas are sinister and plainly wrong and evil! Convenient and beneficial only for them and it mean death and misery for us, The People!

      The time has come to put our acts together and stop this evil people of getting what they want, since thet want the whole world no more no less! They have it all under control and has been very well stipulated in the clauses of their own new world order already taking place!

      ONLY THE PEOPLE WILL SAVE THE PEOPLE! LETS UNITE AND FIGHT TOGETHER!

  • Mirtha Barahona

    This is the way the capitalists want us to think!! They are a group of very sick people, who form part of the only imperialist and genocide elite existent in this world. They have acted in this manner, since 2000 years ago! They like to measlead us as much as possible, that it is what they do best! So they wash up our brains of our ideas, to saw in there their owns!
    Their ideas are sinister and plainly wrong and evil! Convenient and beneficial only for them and it mean death and misery for us, The People!
    The time has come to put our acts together and stop this evil people of getting what they want, since thet want the whole world no more no less! They have it all under control and has been very well stipulated in the clauses of their own new world order already taking place!
    ONLY THE PEOPLE WILL SAVE THE PEOPLE! LETS UNITE AND FIGHT TOGETHER!

  • Rocky Kalani

    Hmmmmm what the “Expert” is saying is that they don’t know what they are talking about. Nothing is more healthy than a healthy mother feeding/bonding with a child. If a mother takes care of herself, knows where her food comes from than that is the best place to get milk. No one knows where baby formula comes from. IDIOTS errrr I mean experts can have their opinions but to tell the world they know what they are talking about is errrrr ummmmm just an idiots opinion lol

  • Andrea Ros

    ok, so Jessica Martucci and Anne Barnhill are sadly idiots. next.

  • Missy Victoria

    Expert morons.

  • AZDynamics

    Good grief. If breast-feeding isn’t natural, then what is it? I’m so damned tired of all this political correctness crap .. .