25 Feb Breastfeeding 101: Myth vs. Fact
Breastfeeding 101: Myth vs. Fact
Feeding your baby is a given, but what to feed your baby, is a choice. We live in a part of the world where we have access to formula, in a multitude of varieties. If you think formula is an option to most women in the world, and you would be mistaken. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that there is a hierarchy of infant feeding methods– 1) Breastfeeding, 2) Breast milk in a bottle, 3) Donor breast milk from (HMBANA) state licensed milk bank, 4) Cow’s milk infant formula, 5) Soy Formula. With so many breastfeeding myths out there, it is hard to see past them, so I am going to address a few of them here.
Myth or Fact 1: Breastfeeding will make your breasts drop or make them lop-sided.
Wrong. This is definitely not true. You can blame age, genetics, and gravity for that one. In fact, it has been said that the pregnancy hormones from getting pregnant can change the suppleness of a woman’s breast, not breastfeeding.
Myth or Fact 2: You can only eat certain foods, especially not spicy or anything that will cause gas.
Myth. If you ate it while you were pregnant, chances are your baby has already been exposed to it. So, all the spicy foods, shellfish, milk, cabbage, beans and broccoli have already been introduced to the baby while In utero because you ate it. Can you imagine all of the babies in India? They wouldn’t survive if their mothers couldn’t eat spicy foods. Furthermore, this idea that if you as the mother have gas, you can pass it to your baby, is rubbish. Gas does not get into your breasts or breast milk, so it cannot be passed to the baby. Your gas is in YOUR GI tract, not in your breast milk, so eat on!
Myth or Fact 3: You have to drink lots and lots of water to breastfeed.
Myth. Drinking water is essential for life, but you don’t have to drink gallons more a day because you are breastfeeding. Your body will still make milk even if you haven’t been drinking all day. You may feel thirstier, but you don’t have to stress yourself with another thing to remember by drinking more than you normally would. Just listen to your body and drink when you are thirsty.
Myth or Fact 4: You have to eat extra calories to make milk.
Myth. The good news is you don’t have to eat more than you need, the bad news is–you don’t have to eat more than you need. It was once thought that in order to make healthy milk and to keep making it, you had to eat 300 or more extra calories per day, but that’s simply not true. There are women in the world that are not as lucky as we are in this part of the world, and they barely eat one meal per day. But keep in mind that you need to stay healthy. You should eat healthy foods, and take care of yourself because you are feeding and taking care of a baby. Your body does burn calories to make milk, so breastfeeding women often report that they feel hungrier.
Any of these breastfeeding Myths surprise to you? What other breastfeeding Myths have you heard? Comment below 🙂
ASK the EXPERTS! If you have breastfeeding questions, we can help! Send us your questions by commenting below, or via email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our CLC’s (certified lactation counselors) will get back to you. <3
Love & Hugs,
Bianca Carter, CLC