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Disclaimer: The information in this post is for educational purposes only. I am not a doctor. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.

Strategies for Breastfeeding a Baby with Food Allergies

While it's not common to find a breastfed baby with food allergies, it can happen!  The most common food allergies that a breastfed baby will react to are cow's milk products and soy products.  Some babies may also react to wheat or gluten, corn, eggs, or peanuts in mom's diet. Warning Signs that You Have a Baby with Food Allergies The first and most noticeable warning sign of food allergies is fussiness.  Unlike colic that usually happens at a consistent time of day (or night!), a baby with food allergies will become fussy immediately after eating.   Other things can cause fussiness after eating, like overactive letdown or poor latch.  … [Read more...]

Symptoms of a Food Intolerance While Breastfeeding

So let's clear one thing up first mamas: your baby can't be exactly allergic to your milk. Your milk is made especially for them! However, there are things within your milk or things about a baby's health that can cause "allergies" or issues with their ability to happily digest your milk. Symptoms of a food intolerance while breastfeeding can be tricky to judge because these symptoms can also be symptoms of other issues. A food intolerance that your baby may have is simply fixed by dietary changes on your part. However, this can be frustrating and exhausting at times.   Solving the mystery: food intolerance or something … [Read more...]

Is My Baby Allergic to My Breast Milk?

With the incidence of food allergies (and the knowledge of such!) on the rise in recent years, it is understandable that moms would be concerned about the possibility of babies being allergic to their breastmilk. Fortunately, this is very rarely the case! A true inability to digest the galactose in breastmilk is called galactosemia. Galactosemia is a genetic mutation that affects the body's ability to convert galactose into glucose, and causes the galactose to build up in the blood. Most cases are diagnosed through the newborn screen completed 24-48 hours post-birth (the "heel prick test"). Galactosemia, in the western world, occurs in … [Read more...]

Pregnancy, Breast Milk, and Supply: 5 Things You Should Know

When you are expecting, your mind will be filled with all sorts of questions and thoughts, especially if you are a first time mom. One of the things that you may not know much about is breastfeeding and how pregnancy, breast milk, and milk supply operate with one another. If you are not a first time mom, but you are pregnant and still have a nursing child, you may also have unanswered questions about how to continue your nursing relationship. This simple guide should fill you in on the basics and give you an outline of what you can expect while you are expecting. Your breasts begin preparing for lactation as soon as you … [Read more...]

3 Advantages of Expressing Breast Milk by Hand

There are many ways to express breast milk. It can either be expressed by hand, with a manual pump, a battery operated or electric breast pump, or a hospital grade pump (which are electric). Even with all the different types of breast pumps out there, knowing how to express breast milk by hand is a useful skill. It might take a few tries to get used to expressing breast milk by hand, so don't get discouraged if it doesn't work the first time. The trick is to put pressure not on the nipple but on the milk ducts. Once you are familiar with hand expressing, it's sometimes easier and more convenient than using a breast pump. What are the … [Read more...]

When Feeding Expressed Breast Milk Wasn’t the Plan

Some moms give birth and are excited to begin pumping and feeding expressed breast milk to their little ones. Others, however, find themselves unexpectedly pumping and giving their milk by tube, cup, bottle or via a supplemental nursing system. This can be a confusing and, possibly, disappointing time for someone who expected to be breastfeeding. For those of you who were thrust into pumping, here are some tips to help you be successful in giving this liquid gold to your little one. Pumping Expressed Breast Milk Many moms are confused by the seemingly unending row of breast pumps in the store: Which one is right for you? Should you … [Read more...]

Stem Cells in Breast Milk: Why Breastmilk is Liquid Gold

We all know that breast is best and that breast milk contains so many things that do wonders for our babies. We know that cancer patients benefit from breast milk, and the first milk (colostrum) is full of antibodies that help keep our babies healthy. What you may not know is that there are many types of cells in breast milk, including stem cells. Yes, those miracle cells can be grown into new healthy tissue! One study indicated that breast milk contains differentiated epithelial and putative stem cells. (Via PubMed) As time goes by more studies are finding these cells transfer between mother and baby from implantation to weaning! Sadly, at … [Read more...]

Changes in Breast Milk During Pregnancy: Production & Composition

Breast milk production is controlled by hormones during pregnancy - rather than supply & demand - regardless of whether or not you are already nursing a little one when you become pregnant. This hormonal influence is what is responsible for changes in the production and composition of breast milk during pregnancy, and what makes nursing while pregnant different than nursing in other stages of life. The Influence of Progesterone Progesterone and estrogen are some of the hormones that increase to sustain a pregnancy and help the developing baby grow. However, an increase in these hormones also suppresses milk secretion. Some women find … [Read more...]

Heating Breast Milk: How-to and What Not to Do

Once you've mastered the fine art of pumping or expressing your breast milk, you need to be able to heat up the milk to feed it to your baby. So what are your options for heating breast milk? How to Heat Breast Milk Whether your breast milk was frozen or refrigerated, you can choose to either heat breast milk with store-bought accessories, or you can use what you have around the house. If your milk was frozen, it will simply take a little longer to heat up. Whatever method you choose, do not let the breast milk boil. You risk destroying essential nutrients and antibodies. Option 1: Warm Water Take your frozen or refrigerated bottle or bag … [Read more...]