The Centers for Disease Control has published the 2010 edition of the Breastfeeding Report Card. Behind the report card is the Healthy People 2010 Target. According to the target, the United States is aiming for a 75% breastfeeding rate and some states are making quite the effort to achieve that rate and better.

The report offers detailed specifics on each state and an estimated percentage of women who choose to breastfeed. In Mississippi, for instance, about 53% of women choose to breastfeed. Utah, however, has a 90% breastfeeding rate. The study also revealed an alarming shift away from breastfeeding after only a few, short months. About 25 states achieved the 75% breastfeeding rate, but after six months the rate remained unchanged.

Between six months and one year of age, many mothers choose to replace breastfeeding with other forms of nutrition for baby. A total of 43% of women chose to continue breastfeeding past the sixth month, on average. That number dropped to 22% by the age of one. Targets for the six and 12 month dates were 50% and 25% respectively.

The results seem to vary by state. In Mississippi, for instance, by 12 months of age only 8% of infants were still breastfeeding. Oregon, however, maintained a 40% breastfeeding rate.

Breastfeeding is considered best for baby in most cases. Colostrum, or first milk, is laced with immune boosting antibodies that help infants fight off disease and illness. Breastmilk is also cheaper than formula – FREE as a matter of fact.

Source: Christian Nordqvist. Centers for Disease Control and MedicalNewsToday. 13 September, 2010.