Mother Nature is a genius and breast milk is always just right. It changes as the nursing session progresses, from watery, thirst-quenching foremilk at the beginning to rich, nutritious hindmilk as the feeding goes on. Don’t worry about what it looks like – just trust it’s perfectly balanced for your baby.
Your newborn’s stomach is only the size of its fist, so they need to fill up little and often and sometimes they just need a drink rather than a full meal. If your feeding position is right and your baby is settled after eating, then frequent feeding is good – it’s stimulating plenty of milk for the future.
Forget the clock and feed on demand when your baby is showing signs of being hungry. Their appetite will vary from one meal to the next and one day to the next, so don’t expect any pattern or routine in the first few weeks.
A healthy diet of vegetables, fruits, grains and proteins is all that a mother needs to provide the proper nutrients to produce milk. Calcium can be obtained from a variety of non-dairy foods, such as dark green vegetables, seeds, nuts and bony fish. After all, do you see any other mammal drinking milk??
Don’t worry – you cannot be allergic to breast milk. But your baby CAN be allergic to something you are eating (most commonly cow’s milk or soy!) If you find this is the case, then removing the suspected food from your diet usually solves the problem.
It can be confusing for little mouths switching between breast and bottle and sometimes this leads to them using the wrong suckling technique at the breast. The right baby bottle can help but it is not always unavoidable.
Breast milk is a fantastic supplement to solid food and continues to boost the immune system for as long as it is offered.
In order to ensure your baby gets a good mix of foremilk and hindmilk, it is important to let your baby finish the first breast first – even if he or she doesn’t take the second breast.
Now wouldn’t that be handy! But while this is true for many older babies, it is best to allow your baby to suckle until they show signs of being finished – such as relaxed hands and arms or detaching themselves.
Who makes this stuff up? Breast milk is nutritionally perfect. Its composition changes over the weeks and months to maintain a balanced diet, constantly suited to your growing baby.
Good to get the facts straight on this one. Whilst exclusively breastfeeding every four hours with no use of pacifier can help suppress your ovulation for the first six months, it is not a reliable method of contraception so it’s best to speak to your doctor about suitable methods.
Getting angry or upset will not affect the quality of your milk! If you’ve had a difficult feeding session and your baby seems unsettled, they are may just be picking up on your tension.
Sadly for all of us tends to happen with age whether you breastfeed or not. Anyone found that eternal youth potion yet??
Breast milk contains all the water a baby needs.
A baby will always be able to suckle more milk than you can pump. Pumping only tells you how much you can pump and how much milk can be pumped each time depends on many factors, including your stress level!
Get to know the Breastfeeding Lingo
Things I wish I’d known about breastfeeding
Can I still breastfeed when I return to work?