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Breast-feeding protects from arthritis but Dr Raj Baldev differs

Jun 19, 2007

A new study suggests that mothers, who breast feed their babies for longer periods, keep their children away from the arthritis but Dr. Raj Baldev, Cosmo Theorist from India, holds a different view.

The latest study says that there is a reduced risk of developing Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), a chronic disorder that causes inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues, if mother feeds her baby for a longer period.

While previous studies have suggested that hormonal factors play a part in the development of RA, the new study found that breast feeding for 13 or more months was associated with a reduced risk of developing RA compared to women who had never breast fed.

The longer the breast feeding period, the lower the mother's risk of developing RA in later life, according to the new data presented at EULAR 2007, the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology in Barcelona, Spain.

The latest study was conducted using the data from a community-based health study in Spain between 1991 and 1996, comparing health information from 136 women, reported health portal Medical News Today .

Comparable use of oral contraceptives (OCs) or hormone replacement therapy (HRT) did not show a significant effect on the risk of developing RA, it said.

"This study specifically highlights the potential of naturally-induced hormones in protecting individuals from developing RA in the future," said lead researcher Mitra Keshavarz, of Malmö Hospital University, Sweden.

"It further adds to the growing body of evidence in favour of breast feeding and its positive health implications this time demonstrating its protective benefits for the mother," he added.

But as per the experience of Dr. Raj Baldev, Cosmo Theorist from India, “I have closely seen a case where two children suffered from chronic Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) despite their mother fed them for a long period."

"The mother was advised not to breast feed the third child and she complied with, and as a result her third child was free from any disease whereas her two earlier brother and sister suffered from RA and AR because she gave them breast feeding for long periods. The child, who was not given any breast feeding, is a grown up man now, quite healthy. What would the researcher like to say in this regard?

"There is no doubt that breast milk is perfectly suited to nourish infants and protect them from illness but it perhaps does not apply to the cases of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and Atrophic Arthritis (AR)," Dr. Raj Baldev said.

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