Supplementing Like a Boss!

pamela1

Pamela contacted me while she was still in the hospital because her baby girl, Gabrielle, had a 10% weight loss while exclusively breastfeeding. She wanted to be discharged to go home to be with her other children but the hospital was concerned about her baby’s weight loss – so Gabrielle was was supplemented before her discharge and she was instructed to continue supplementing after nursing. Continue reading

Breastfeeding, WIC, and the Black Community

Yesterday I addressed the disparities and some of the challenges black women face in breastfeeding their children. Today I’d like to talk about the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, and its role in supporting black mothers in healthy feeding practices for their infants.

Did you know that many women have the option of using the WIC program to help get infant formula and even food for themselves, both during and after their pregnancies? In most places, this state-run program is available until a child turns 5, and can be very helpful. Now women, including minorities like black women, can set themselves up to not only get a little milk and certain foods for themselves monthly, but they can ALSO get all the formula they need for their babies. No need to breastfeed…right? Continue reading

Moms, Don’t Feel Ashamed About Your Breast Milk Supply – Even Scientists Are Still Searching For Answers for Why It Isn’t Consistent (PART TWO)

Copyright: Lee & Kelleher
Copyright: Lee & Kelleher

I recently interviewed Dr.Shannon Kelleher, a human milk researcher, about the staggering results from her recent publication “Biological underpinnings of breastfeeding challenges: the role of genetics, diet, and environment on lactation physiology,” published recently in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism. Dr. Kelleher’s mission is to use scientific and statistical research to uncover how lactation works, why it can fail, and how diet affects a woman’s ability to produce enough quality milk. In Part I, we talked about lactation statistics, and zinc. Today, in Part II, we discuss colostrum and genetics: Continue reading

Moms, Don’t Feel Ashamed About Your Breast Milk Supply – Even Scientists Are Still Searching For Answers for Why It Isn’t Consistent

Biological underpinnings of breastfeeding challenges
Dr. Kelleher’s Latest Research, found here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27354238

I recently interviewed Dr.Shannon Kelleher, a human milk researcher, about the staggering results from her recent publication “Biological underpinnings of breastfeeding challenges: the role of genetics, diet, and environment on lactation physiology,” published recently in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism. You may remember my two-part interview with Dr. Kelleher about her published research on zinc related to mammary function.

During that series Dr. Kelleher said, “If you think about it, when you’re breastfeeding you have no idea how much milk you are producing or if the composition is optimal and as long as your baby isn’t overtly ill, you assume that everything is working well. But is it?” And that question has echoed in my mind in the years since that post.

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When exclusive breastfeeding causes life long disabilities from insufficient intake. Honoring a child’s 6th birthday today. It doesn’t get easier.

HappyBirthdayWhen exclusive breastfeeding causes lifelong disabilities from insufficient intake.  Honoring a child’s 6th birthday today.  It doesn’t get easier.

6 years ago, a healthy, bouncing baby boy was born. His mommy had a normal vaginal delivery and he immediately latched and began breastfeeding. His first 24 hours of life were uneventful and his mommy and daddy were over the moon during this blissful time. Neither of them knew they would be victims of breastfeeding starvation which would result in life long disabilities for the baby boy, and a heroic campaign of epic proportions by his mother to inform the public of the unforeseen and dangerous consequences of insufficient intake while striving for exclusive breastfeeding.

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This is what my feeding practice looks like as a NICU nurse and IBCLC.

Today on March 2, 2016 I am celebrating IBCLC Day. There are manyIBCLCDay16 specialties  in the lactation world that can help every mother meet her infant feeding goals. My infant feeding practice is rather unique, as I consult all over the world to help with complex infant feeding challenges, and the majority of my consultation work is provided as a courtesy as most mothers cannot afford lactation consultation fees.
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Pumping Like A Boss

The Momivist : Where science, infant feeding and shame-free support rules.

Pumping is a big part of how many new moms feed their babies. Pumping can beNinthDayMomivist a challenge for various reasons, known and unknown. I want to share what I have learned over the years to help improve your pumping experience and hopefully to help you to learn how to collect more milk while protecting your supply when away from your baby. A few things need need to happen before you begin to pump. I am referring to electric double pumps, or hospital grade pumps:

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Breastfeeding Failure: How This Therapist Coped

Rachel1Breastfeeding: it is everywhere. Even for people who choose to formula feed for whatever reason, they are reminded of the benefits of breastfeeding on the can of formula that reads “breast is best.” For some, we allow breastfeeding (or lack of breastfeeding) to define the type of mother that we are. I was one of those “some”. The sad part is, it took me two years to realize it was in MY head and MY issue.

First off, allow me to provide some background information about myself and my journey. It is relevant, I promise. After a year and a half of not being able to get pregnant, my husband and I decided to seek treatment from a fertility specialist. For anyone who is fortunate enough not go through this process, count your blessings. It is an emotionally draining process to say the least. Fortunately, after about a year from the time we sought treatment, I gave birth to a healthy, beautiful seven-pound baby boy. He was (and still is) absolutely amazing.   I knew infertility could negatively impact a mom’s ability to breastfeed, but I was determined to breastfeed. Determined. Continue reading

Black Breastfeeding Week: Hell YES we need it.

World Black Breastfeeding Week begins on August 25 and I am Ashley2already hearing the negative, disapproving “buzz” in the lactation community. I will never understand why anyone–especially lactation consultants– disapproves of World Black Breastfeeding Week. As IBCLCs we have an ethical responsibility to support all cultures, and this includes African-American women. As a white and privileged RN IBCLC, I ask myself, “What do I know about the cultural norms of infant feeding in African-American communities?” Answer: absolutely nothing! I decided to reach out to my friend and colleague, Ashley Russell,  to educate lactation consultants about the importance of World Black Breastfeeding Week. This is what she said:

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