Although any form of chest feeding (feeding of a newborn whilst the parent holds them at their chest) fosters an emotional bonding between child and parent not offered by “traditional” methods of bottle feeding, consumption of breastmilk by newborns offers unparalleled benefits to child and “breast feeder”.

Benefits of breastmilk to newborns

Consumption of breastmilk offers a newborn child many health benefits, some extending into adulthood, including decreased risk of:

Benefits of breastfeeding to the breastfeeding parent

Breastfeeding also benefits the “breastfeeder”, including decreased rate of:

Obstacles to breastfeeding

Although some are not able to breastfeed owing to use of medications that may be passed through breastmilk or economic obstacles (e.g., an employment situation that does not allow for effective breastfeeding), many who are able to breastfeed are discouraged from it by the challenges it presents, most of which (e.g., low milk supply) are soluble with the support of a lactation consultant.

Our goal at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine is that every parent who is able to breastfeed, and wishes to breastfeed, receives the support they need to be able to offer their newborn this incomparable source of nutrition (and parental bonding).

Can a lactation consultant help me?

Lactation consultants are healthcare professionals who are able to help you identify solutions for common challenges of breastfeeding, including:

When should I contact a lactation consultant?

Lactation consultants are most often consulted in the weeks following birth, by first time parents as they begin learn the various skills of parenting, but parents of any breastfeeding child who are facing these challenges may benefit from assessment by a lactation consultant.

In certain circumstances, an assessment pre-birth may have value. Certain breastfeeding challenges (e.g., nipple inversion) are most effectively addressed prior to beginning breastfeeding. If you are uncertain whether you may benefit from an an appointment with a lactation consultant, you may contact us to arrange a complimentary “Meet and Greet” appointment.

What are the qualifications of a lactation consultant?

Our lactation consultant, Laura Kent-Davidson, ND, IBLCE, in addition to her qualification as a licensed naturopathic doctor, is an International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) certified lactation consultant.

Training and certification by the IBLCE requires a candidate to complete:

Lactation Consultant Services at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine

Lactation consultations at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine are offered by Laura Kent-Davidson, ND, IBLCE and may be conducted at your home or virtually. Initial lactation consultation appointments are 75 minutes in duration.

At your appointment you will:

As a licensed naturopathic doctor, Laura may also review with you parental nutrition, your child’s sleep patterns and postpartum transition as, viewed through a holistic lens, are important variables potentially affecting lactation, breastfeeding and the postpartum experience in general.

A treatment plan from a naturopathic doctor offering lactation guidance may include (prescription of):

Are lactation consultant appointments covered by O.H.I.P.?

O.H.I.P. does not pay for lactation consultant appointments, but as a government-regulated healthcare profession, services offered by naturopathic doctors, including lactation consultations, are covered by most extended healthcare plans.


NHS. Benefits of breastfeeding [Internet]. England: National Health Service. [updated 2023; cited 2023 Jun 7]. Available from:

Cleveland Clinic. Benefits of breastfeeding [Internet]. Cleveland (US): Cleveland Clinic. [updated 2022; cited 2023 Jun 7]. Available from:

CDC. Breastfeeding benefits both baby and mom [Internet]. US: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [updated 2021; cited 2023 Jun 7]. Available from:’s,common%20among%20women%20who%20breastfeed.

ACOG. Barriers to breastfeeding: supporting initiation and continuation of breastfeeding [Internet]. US: The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. [cited 2023 Jun 7]. Available from: