The Other Extreme
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|Sun, 02-10-2013 - 8:08pm|
Formula is fake food like other procesed food. Formula is extremely deficient. It hardly has any ingredients in it (less than 3 dozen). Breastmilk has thousands of essential ingredients that formula is MISSING. For example, formula has only 2 of the 200 essential fatty acids available in breastmilk. But these are not even human essential fatty acids. They are fake ones that the baby's body has to use energy to convert to a human form! Here is a recent report.... No breastfeeding = doom? No. Remember, babies need much more than food. They need your prompt responsiveness to their needs, lots of positive touch, loving communication and tenderness. Being a responsive caregiver will help their bodies and brains grow well too.
One of the most highly effective preventive measures a mother can take to protect the health of her infant is to breastfeed. However, in the United States, although most mothers hope to breastfeed, and 75% of babies start out being breastfed, only 15% are exclusively breastfed 6 months later. Additionally, rates are significantly lower for African-American infants.
The success rate among mothers who want to breastfeed can be greatly improved through active support from their families, friends, communities, clinicians, health care leaders, employers, and policymakers. Given the importance of breastfeeding for the health and well-being of mothers and children, it is critical that we take action across the country to support breastfeeding.
Women who can’t breastfeed, or don’t have the time to breastfeed — you go for the formula, but I think most public health officials want to encourage women to breastfeed for the first couple weeks, because the outcomes are better, and if they can do it, that’s great, and if they can’t, they can’t.
We should not change the public health message that breast-feeding is the physiologic norm. Soft-pedaling medical advice because we might hurt someone’s feelings is patronizing at best, and unethical at worst. Further, backing away from evidence-based medical recommendations for 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding gives policy makers permission to cut back support for mothers and families.
In so many cases, a terrible breastfeeding experience is the downstream effect of subpar maternity care, unsupportive family and friends, poor medical advice and unrealistic expectations of motherhood. But there is a major difference between a public health message on a billboard and a conversation between a struggling mother and her medical provider.
In routine care, we need to ask each mother how she feels about how feeding is going, and then we need to take time to listen to her response. And if, for this mother, and this baby, extracting milk and delivering it to her infant have overshadowed all other aspects of their relationship, it may be that exclusive breastfeeding is not best for them – in fact, it may not even be good for them.