A new study has outlined the immense benefits of breast milk that far outweighs any risk of exposure to chemicals present in breast milk.
Published in the journal Breastfeeding Medicine, the study compared breastfed and formula fed infants across time.
It encompassed an historical review of the medical literature and included time periods when levels of environmental chemicals were higher than they tend to be at present.
The authors of the study report admit that it does not downplay the adverse effects of exposure to dioxins and other environmental toxins.
They, however, distinguish between the statistical significance of risk or benefit assessments in an individual compared to population effects.
"When breast-milk was chosen by regulatory agencies as a handy medium for measuring environmental toxins, the public became alarmed that breast milk was contaminated. The authors, eminent authorities on the subject have put these fears to rest," says Dr. Ruth A. Lawrence, Editor-in-Chief of Breastfeeding Medicine, from the Department of Pediatrics, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry.