Skip Global navigation and goto content

It's a New Day in Public Health.

The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county & community efforts.

Skip MegaMenu and goto content

DOH Leon Celebrates World Breastfeeding Week

By Pamela Saulsby

August 01, 2022

DOH Leon Celebrates World Breastfeeding Week 

August 1, 2022


WIC Family Support Team Brings Back In-Person Breastfeeding Classes

 Tallahassee, Fla --- The Florida Department of Health in Leon County (DOH Leon) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are celebrating World Breastfeeding Week 2022 during August 1-7, 2022, to promote and support breastfeeding as the best source of nutrition for a baby’s first year of life.  This year’s theme is: Step Up For Breastfeeding: Educate and Support.

The World Breastfeeding Week 2022 theme highlights the links between breastfeeding and good nutrition, food security, and reduction of inequalities.

Protecting breastfeeding ensures:

  • Good health and prevents malnutrition, including under and over nutrition. Breastfeeding has positive lifelong health effects on infants, children, and mothers such as lower incidence of respiratory infections and ear infections for infants and children and reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer for mothers. Breastfeeding also reduces the risk of childhood overweight and obesity compared to formula feeding.
  • Food security even in times of crisis. Breastfeeding provides food security to infants from the very beginning of life, contributes to food security for the whole family, and ensures food security for babies even in times of household or widespread disasters, such as hurricanes.
  • Improved Economics and Reduced Inequalities. Breastfeeding can help break the cycle of poverty for families, which impacts hunger and malnutrition. Breastfeeding provides an equal start for everyone. With no additional burden on household income, breastfeeding is a low-cost way of feeding babies and contributes to poverty reduction. Breastfeeding can also reduce costs to the health care system and employers by decreasing costs of hospitalizations, medications, and reduced absenteeism.
  • A positive impact on the health of the planet in several ways:

✓ Breastmilk is a sustainable and environmentally friendly resource.
✓ Breastfeeding is readily available without needing other supplies.
✓ Breastmilk production does not require the use of energy for manufacturing and does not create waste or air pollution.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for infants for the first year of life and beyond, with the addition of appropriate complimentary foods when the infant is developmentally ready, around 6 months of age.

“From a public health perspective, breastfeeding is a natural and highly beneficial part of a baby’s early life,” said Sandon S. Speedling, MHS, CPM, CPH, DOHLeon Interim Health Officer. “World Breastfeeding Week is the perfect time to recognize that families may need extra encouragement and support as they parent their babies and young children. This includes support for feeding choices and logistics, work schedules and more.”

In celebration of World Breastfeeding Week, DOH Leon is excited to announce that their regional WIC offices will soon resume in-person breastfeeding classes in Madison, Taylor, and Leon Counties. The monthly sessions had been on hiatus since the COVID-19 pandemic. These classes help moms with breastfeeding concerns and allow them to talk with other moms who have a mutual connection through breastfeeding. Call our WIC office to learn more at 850-404-6350. All prenatal and breastfeeding moms are welcome even if they are not participating in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).

For more information about breastfeeding awareness and what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is doing to increase breastfeeding rates, visit:

# # #

Written by:
Pamela Saulsby | Public Information Officer
Follow DOH Leon on Twitter @Healthyleonfl