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Health

Idaho Has The Largest Percentage Of Breast-Feeding Moms

Breast feeding, baby
JCarter
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Flickr Creative Commons

Health officials say breast-feeding rates continue to inch up: Now more than 3 in 4 mothers try to breast-feed their newborns.

Breast-feeding rates remain highest in Idaho (91.8 percent) and lowest in Mississippi (50.5 percent). Experts attribute that to regional differences in culture and workplace policies that support breast-feeding.

Wednesday's report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that nationally, 77 percent of moms tried breast-feeding in 2010. A decade earlier that figure was 71 percent. The percent still breast-feeding a year later rose to 27 percent from 16 percent in 2000.

The report comes from a national telephone survey of more than 8,000 parents and caretakers of small children.

Experts say breast milk contains antibodies that protect newborns from infections, and breast-fed babies are less likely to become overweight.