This I got thanks to the Weston A. Price site, and the picture I remember coming out as controversial a while back. Shocker, I am a breastfeeding fan. Why do we have boobs? I was breastfed and potential future children will be breastfed as well.
The good news is for the babies. It seems, regardless of mother’s food intake, milk is still made nutrient-dense. However, that doesn’t mean certain nutrients couldn’t be better or that the mother’s health is not compromised. Many nutrients are not stored in the body, and have to come from diet. That being said commonly missing nutrients are: zinc, calcium, magnesium, thiamine, vitamin E, vitamin D, B6, and Iron. In order to get adequate supplies, an additional 500 to 700 calories is recommended. They actually suggest new mom’s don’t dip below 1800 calories for 6 months (12 to be safe). Weight loss should be slow. You want to make sure you and your baby are getting enough. Although low carb could be manageable (there is nothing suggesting ketones can adverse affect on babies), somewhere moderate like 100 to 150 grams of carbs may be the best way to get a variation of nutrients. Also important to note is fat. AA, EPA, and DHA are important for nervous system development. This can come from egg yolks and cod liver oil. You need to nourish yourself. Mom’s are at risk to lose 20% of lean mass (I’ve seen it with my own eyes).
Both mom and baby gain from breastfeeding:
- Babies have increased health (I think this is part of the reason my immune system is so rock solid) like decreased ear infections, decreased asthma, decreased risk future obesity and diabetes
- It can help moms prevent postpartum
- Decrease the risk of breast cancer (especially with extended breastfeeding)
- Decreased risk of osteoporosis
- Decreased risk of stroke
- Stimulates hormonal activity
- Helps mother lose weight
- BONDS baby and mother together (no wonder my mom and I are so tight)
How long to breastfeed: ideally six months with solids mixed in up to a year. Although I have read that two years is best. And the WHO (World Health Organization) suggests a whopping three years! Listen to your body and do what you feel is right for you and your baby.
Who shouldn’t breastfeed? Galactosemia, vegans, junk food dieter, someone with insufficient milk supply, adoptive mother.
It’s nature’s perfect baby food, why argue with Mother Nature? Especially when you and your offspring benefit! Fill up on nutrient-dense foods.