Issue No.197 – May 2022 : Shawaal 1443

Breast milk is the birthright of every newborn child and the period of weaning is two years as affirmed in the Noble Quran (Ch 2, Verse 233 & Ch 31, Verse 14). Islamic dietary regulations begin even before the child is born with advice to the mother to be circumspect in what she consumes lest it affects the developing spirituality of the soul of the child in utero.

Breastfeeding brings immense health benefits to the baby and mother. It is free of Haraam substances and the offspring consumes that which is pure. Some benefits are as follows:

  • The natural production of colostrum (the first milk in the early days of breastfeeding) which acts as a vaccine due to it containing large quantities of antibodies and is also high in nutrition. Helps a baby’s brain develop to its maximum potential.
  • Mother’s milk is clean, safe, convenient and free.
  • Breast milk is easily digestible and does not give rise to allergies.
  • Suckling at the breast helps to develop and strengthen the baby’s palate.
  • Ease of travel with the baby. There is no need to carry feeding bottles, flask, milk formula, etc.
  • It strengthens the bond between mother and child.
  • Helps the mother recover from pregnancy and delivery by returning the uterus to its original size and also helping with weight loss.
  • Reduces the risk of breast cancer.

For those who have no option and choose to bottle-feed their baby, beware the minefield of Haraam ingredients used in the manufacture of some baby formulae. Haraam ingredients such as pork enzymes, animal fat and also whey protein from non-Halaal sources have emerged during evaluation of baby formulae over the years. SANHA has published several cautionary notices on these findings.

Caution must be exercised when travelling overseas and purchasing the same brands as those Halaal certified in South Africa. Whilst the brands may be internationally available, individual ingredients can differ from country to country and may not meet the same Halaal standards applied by SANHA.

Click here for a list of baby formulae certified Halaal by SANHA –