Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

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For the Week Ending April 1, 2018.

Your Guide to Breastfeeding

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Women’s Health just issued a sixty-page guide to breastfeeding. Download it for free here.

This is important for you because it is a great resource if you have questions or concerns about breastfeeding.

Babies can Make Inferences

The relationship between language and reason has been a very difficult one for linguists and philosophers to disentangle. But a new study indicates that babies, although they can’t yet talk, can reason. The researchers saw the babies’ eyes dilate only when they had to make a logical inference – just like adults. Read more here.

This is important for you because your baby is always watching, and thinking, and learning, and deducing – be a good role model!

Abortion and the First Amendment

“Crisis pregnancy centers” are run by private organizations that discourage abortions. In California women can end up there for medical care, and the law states that the centers must inform their clients that abortions are legal and available. The centers claim that this impinges on their right to free speech, since they don’t want to promote abortions. The case is now before the Supreme Court, which will probably decide on the constitutionality of California’s law this summer. Read more here and here.

This is important for you because it is a really interesting SCOTUS case that reveals a lot about how the different justices consider the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Doctors in Texas Muse on How to Limit Maternal Mortality

Texan doctors convened this past weekend to trade ideas on how to limit the unnecessarily high maternal mortality rate in the state. They agreed that mothers need better access to affordable healthcare and information on family planning, since unplanned pregnancies – on the rise since funding for family planning was slashed in 2011- tend to be the most dangerous ones. Read more here.

This is important for you because maternal mortality, and the inequality of black mothers dying at higher rates than white ones, is an embarrassing and largely avoidable scourge in the whole country, not just Texas.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was All He Does Is Eat, Sleep, and Poop: Advice for New Parents. Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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