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Thread: Breastfeeding question :)
September 1st, 2013 10:13 AM #21Senior Member
- Join Date
- Jan 2012
Congratulations firstly :-)
After that I would start by saying that every baby & every mum is a different individual, so what works for some will not work for others, so I think the best approach to the whole journey of motherhood is to do lots of research, make plans for your preferred path, but be open to change, allow for flexibility and don't beat yourself up when things don't go as planned. I have had friends who intended to breastfeed and for varied reasons it didn't work out, but their kids are happy and healthy.
I breastfed both my girls up until just after 1 year old, at which stage both had reduced to just a morning feed. No.1 was born in 2009 and I was advised to start solids at 6 months. No. 2 was born in 2012 and I was advised 4 months; in both cases the advice was based on current thinking on allergies and food intolerances, and from what I have read it seems that the "fashion" or thinking seems to swing back and forwards every few years/decade. I followed the advice at the time and both my girls have been all well so far.
In terms of introducing solids, you can easily find all the guides about when a baby is ready/interested, but from my understanding it needs to be well prior to 12 months as breast milk does not provide iron that babies need after the first 4-6 months, so if you don't start solids around then you should consider at least adding an iron supplement.
With regard to how you introduce solids I think that the idea of waiting a week or several days between each new food is a bit extreme; if you really follow that they will be in their teens (and very fussy eaters) before they have tried everything. To be safe I would say only try new foods in the morning, so you can monitor them for the whole day after, in case of any reaction (rather than just before bed). You can keep a diary of what they have and if there is a reaction it would then be easy to back-track and eliminate the last few new foods, then bring them back one by one.
You may want to look into "Baby Led Weaning" or BLW, which is the idea of skipping all the pureed 'baby foods' and going straight to 'real' (finger) food; I heard about it when I had no.2 and liked the idea, but she wasn't into it at all (see my opening comments about making plans!) a friend of mine had not heard of it but her baby basically demanded it (refused to be spoonfed and just kept grabbing from the family table) so each to their own.
If you are planning to breastfeed also investigate expressing; it gives you a lot of flexibility & freedom, so may help you BF for longer.
Wishing you a wonderful journey with your bub!
p.s I found lots of good advice on all things baby related in the book "Baby Love" by Robin Barker.
p.p.s Just some cautions on introducing solids; no added salt: stick to no/low sodium choices and some advice says no egg or honey before 1 year old.
And one last edit: in terms of adding in cows milk: my understanding is that it is not intrinsically bad for babies, it just doesn't have everything that babies do need, so as the 'main' milk/nutrition it's not appropriate before 1, but it's fine to cook with it, use it in cereal etc but don't use it to totally replace formula or breastmilk. I think that midwives etc are worried that people will start using cows milk exclusively for newborns so they make it sound like poision. At 10ish months old my girls had 2-3 BFs a day, solid foods including dairy and the occasional cup of cows milk.
Last edited by lrmum; September 1st, 2013 at 10:44 AM.Fave names: Astrid, Anise, Annika, Cleo, Gabrielle, Holly, Marnie, Mardi, Miranda, Miriam, Poppy, Sydney
I'm from Australia, so when I'm referring to popularity I'm using Aussie lists.
September 1st, 2013 11:58 AM #23Junior Member
- Join Date
- Aug 2013
A LOT of info!!!
Wow - lots of great and varied input here!!! While it is really helpful to hear anecdotal advice, I think evidence based information is the most helpful and reliable source to base your choices on. This is what is proven across the board, not what happened or worked for one child or family.
As many women have said, your plan changes and grows. I planned to breastfeed for three months. Then 6, then 9, then 12. It just worked well for us and I saw no need to stop. WHO recommends breastfeeding for 2 years and that is what is most common around the world, so keep in mind the US, Canada, and UK are a bit different there.
As far as introducing solids, there are plenty of great reasons to delay (http://kellymom.com/nutrition/starti.../delay-solids/). As others have said, don't freak out about your baby being hungry!!! Your babies growth and milestones will show you that your baby is thriving. That is one of the number one reasons why people stop breastfeeding or introduce solids too early. Breastmilk is the most calorie dense food for your baby. That means anything else you offer will provide LESS satiation, not more. Any food a baby eats DECREASES how much the baby nurses because some of the required calories are being obtained elsewhere, so it will also lower your supply since it is based on demand.
The reason that I didn't feed my son solids until 7 months was the virgin gut. Not to get too scientific but the baby cannot digest certain enzymes properly until a certain age. This slightly varies from child to child but it isn't until approximately 7 months that the baby can properly digest carbohydrates (aka that infant cereal certain pediatricians push as early as 4 months!).
There's also evidence that iron-deficiency is not common with exclusively breastfed babies, so no iron-fortified food or supplements are necessary. I recommend getting your babies blood tested if you are worried and decide from the results. http://kellymom.com/nutrition/starti.../delay-solids/
Lastly, babies very rarely self-wean before 18 months. If your baby suddenly stops nursing, it is more likely a nursing strike, illness, or something else going on. http://kellymom.com/bf/normal/babyselfwean/
For so many years, moms had to base their decisions off what their doctor or relatives said. Now, we can find the facts and be informed to make the most educated choices for our kids. I highly recommend the Kelly Mom site! It is evidence-based and links to relevant studies for nearly all claims/ideas.
September 1st, 2013 04:58 PM #25Senior Member
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
I exclusively breastfed my twins until they were about 6 months. At that point I did a lot of reading about what to introduce and when and discovered that it varies a lot based on where you are. We live in Sweden and the guidelines were not exactly what I read on American sites so I just decided to mainly relax and do what I felt seemed reasonable. We did a lot of recipes from this site: http://www.homemade-baby-food-recipes.com/index.html which I found to be a great resource. We introduced foods at a rate of about one new thing every 3-5 days, and then by about 8 months they were basically eating our foods (which we had slightly modified to eliminate things high in nitrates etc) blended with a hand blender for several meals a day.
As for stopping breastfeeding, that was tough. I felt a lot of pressure to stop earlier than I did, but I decided to do it as long as the boys wanted to and I felt comfortable doing it. I think after about 12 months (maybe earlier... by boys LOVED solid food!) we were breastfeeding only at night. My 'older' twin stopped sometime around 15 months totally by his own decision. I kept offering it for about a week or two but he would just cry and reject it so I stopped trying with him. His 'younger' brother nursed at night until he was 17 months old and, again after he started rejecting it, I offered it for another week or so to be sure he was really done. It was earlier that I wanted to be done, but I feel good that I let them choose since I had the ability to. I know breastfeeding is not an option for some people for a wide variety of reasons, and I am just grateful that I was able to do it for so long since it was something that I wanted to do. But that said, breastfeeding for a long time is very demanding for the mother. I have several good friends who gave it up earlier to get some balance back in their lives and I respect them for making the choice that was best for their families.
Good luck!Mama to twin boys Oliver Graham and Luke Axel
September 2nd, 2013 06:00 PM #27Senior Member
- Join Date
- Jul 2013
I had planned to wean Azula at 6 months or first tooth, whatever came first. She's 14 months now with 4 teeth. I'm still nursing her in the morning & at night (even though I'm pregnant again she doesn't seem to mind) 'cause she will NOT take a bottle or sippy cup or anything like that & I want to make sure she gets enough fluids. I started sort of introducing purees around 6 months but didn't start really pushing solids til around 9 months. She eats LOADS of solids now, she is still just a little peanut but man she has a huge appetite!
I get some flack from our friends (wives and hubs) for still breastfeeding, but I mostly just ignore it. I rarely need to feed her away from home - I only will do it if I am putting her down at night or if she is especially tired/sick/fussy. I think our friends judge me because it might be an insecurity thing for them - they had cesareans and either couldn't or just found it very difficult to breastfeed so they gave their girls formula.
Last edited by katieydenberg; September 2nd, 2013 at 06:05 PM.New username is @ truenature