Breast Is Best
Chalk up another plus for breastfeeding! Scientists at Japan’s Nagasaki University developed a dandy little experiment to determine whether infants felt less pain when exposed to the scent of their own mothers’ breast milk than when they were exposed to the odor of another mom’s breast milk or to that of formula. They stuck babies in the heel with needles, then measured how much said babies cried and flailed in response. Besides proving that scientists are occasionally heartless—who would stick an innocent baby in the heel with a needle?—the research showed that babies were calmed more by the scent than of their own moms’ milk than by either of the other two options, suggesting that breastfeeding helps to calm babies and alleviate pain.