Prof. Rizal Damanik Encourages Exclusive Breast Milk with Torbangun

IPB University Professor, Prof. Rizal Damanik, commented on the panic buying of bear's milk and the report of Chinese researchers regarding breast milk (ASI) which can prevent and treat COVID-19. He explained that the nutrients in bear's milk is equal as cow's milk.

“Cow’s milk generally contains growth factors, one of it is immunoglobulin (Ig). Immunoglobulins are protein compounds used by the immune system to fight germs, viruses, bacteria, and other disease-causing agents. The best immunoglobulin (Ig) is in colostrum. Colostrum itself is the first milk that comes out during the breastfeeding process which has a characteristic yellow color”, he said.

This fact explained that breast milk can increase immunity, even SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies have also been found in breast milk. "Recently a research team from China reported that breast milk can prevent and treat COVID-19. A research team from University of Rochester Medical Center in America reported the same thing, as proclaimed on the URMC official website", he said.

Even so, in the current era there are still many mothers who have not been able to optimally provide breast milk for their children. The reality in the field is that many lactating mothers choose formula milk over breast milk. According to Riskesdas data that obtained in 2018, the coverage of the early breastfeeding mother initiation process was less than 24 hours are only 5.2%.

Indonesia's breastfeeding rate according to World Breastfeeding Trends Initiative (2020) ranks 66 out of 98 countries. This data proves that the tendency of mothers in Indonesia to breastfeed their children are low. Some of the reasons that emerged include busy work, limited time, and insufficient milk production.
“Exclusive breastfeeding can actually be the first step to reduce the risk of stunting. By giving exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, you will be able to build the baby's body's defense system optimally”, he added.

He encourages exclusive breastfeeding in the first 1000 days of life (HPK). 1000 HPK is a golden period of growth and development for babies, from fetuses in the womb to toddlers aged 2 years. One of the phases that will support the successful implementation of 1000 HPK is the breastfeeding phase. Various studies have shown the potential and benefits of breastfeeding for the baby's growth and development process, especially exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of a baby's life. Exclusive breastfeeding can prevent various diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, and others.

Starting from it all, he finally conducted a series of research for more than 20 years. He researched the local wisdom plant of Batak people, North Sumatra, called Torbangun leaf (Coleus amboinicus Lour). His research has been used as the main reference for research related to breast milk stimulants (galactogogue).
He also developed a functional food product based on torbangun leaves together with Torbangun Herb Team (IPB University Alumni). Some of the products that have been developed include supplements (ASI UP) and Torbangun Tea (TORTEA).

Through this development, he and his team are committed to providing the best functional food to complement breast milk nutrition and support the milk production of breastfeeding mothers in Indonesia. It is hoped that breast feeding by mothers can be carried out to the maximum and create a generation of healthy and intelligent Indonesian children. (**/Zul)


Published Date : 16-Jul-2021

Resource Person : Prof Rizal Damanik

Keyword : ASI, COVID-19, Colostrum, Torbangun, IPB University