(FOX NEWS) – Immediate benefits of breastfeeding for babies, like fewer respiratory illnesses and better weight gain, have been well researched.
Now, a recent study shows babies who are exclusively breast-fed actually have healthier cholesterol numbers at age seventeen.
The study looks at data from more than 3,000 children.
Researchers compared cholesterol levels, at age seventeen, between children who were exclusively breastfed and children who received formula for the first three months of life.
They found children who were exclusively breast-fed had better cholesterol numbers than children who received formula regardless of their current weight.
Benefits of breastfeeding extend to mom as well including decreased bleeding, less pain, lower levels of postpartum depression and lower risk of some cancers later in life.
Complete results of the study can be found in Pediatrics.