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Article: How circadian rhythm affects breastfeeding and baby development

Jak cirkadiánní rytmus ovlivňuje kojení a vývoj dítěte

How circadian rhythm affects breastfeeding and baby development

Breastfeeding is one of the most intimate and natural aspects of motherhood, benefiting both mother and child. In recent years, scientific studies have revealed a fascinating connection between breastfeeding and circadian rhythms, which can have a profound effect on a child's health and development.

What are circadian rhythms?

Circadian rhythms are natural, biologically programmed cycles that control various physiological processes in the body during a 24-hour cycle. These rhythms influence many aspects of our health, including sleep, metabolism, hormonal function, and behavior.

The effect of circadian rhythms on breastfeeding

Breast milk is not only a source of nutrition; it is a complex fluid that changes dynamically throughout the day under the influence of the mother's circadian rhythms. Studies have shown that the composition of breast milk, including the concentration of hormones such as cortisol and melatonin, changes depending on the time of day. Cortisol, which is present in higher concentrations in the morning, helps the baby to wake up and be alert, while melatonin, which is produced in the evening, promotes a more restful and restorative sleep.

The importance of synchronizing breastfeeding with natural rhythms

Giving milk at the right time can be key to supporting the healthy development of a baby's circadian rhythms. Collected milk that is not given in accordance with the original time of collection can disrupt the development of this biological clock in the baby, resulting in sleep problems and a possible decrease in physiological alignment with the mother and the surrounding environment.

Why direct breastfeeding outperforms expressed milk and formula

Direct breastfeeding not only offers the right timing of nutritional and hormonal components, but also ensures that the baby receives milk with the optimal composition for its current needs. This is not fully achievable with expressed milk or artificial milk formulas, which cannot mimic the complex changes in milk throughout the day.

Challenges of a modern lifestyle

Modern living conditions, including exposure to blue light and electromagnetic radiation, can negatively affect breast milk production and its circadian rhythms. Women who are exposed to these conditions may have difficulty producing milk and may face a higher risk of health complications during pregnancy and childbirth.


Scientific advances in breastfeeding and circadian rhythms provide us with a deeper understanding of how nature optimizes the growth and development of newborns. Being aware of these dynamic processes can help mothers better adapt and support their baby's health in the best way possible. Breastfeeding support and education about its importance should be a priority so that new generations are protected and can thrive in health and harmony with natural biological rhythms.

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