Safe for Breastmilk??

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by SucculentFlower, Jan 3, 2005.

  1. SucculentFlower

    SucculentFlower earthfirst!

    Howdy folks...I need a little advice concerning my hankering for wheatgrass juice, do you thinks it's safe to drink while breastfeeding. My Mother thinks that it may be too concentrated. I'm concerned that it may either change the taste of my milk as to offend my baberz, and/or may perhaps detox me in some way (and the toxins released from me may go into the breastmilk)...any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! ;)
  2. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

    i'd drink it. :D it's chock full of vitamins and minerals. anything you eat is going to change the taste of your milk slightly, it's good for our babies to get to experience different tastes! i dont know anything about wheatgrass and detoxing, but as far as i know, eating living foods is only going to be beneficial...lots of healthy yummy nutrients. :D

    maybe someone with a copy of hale's book can look it up for you? i had a borrowed copy for a little while and i was amazed at the amount of info in the book about herbal remedies. for some reason i thought that hale only focused on pharmaceuticals, but i digress...

    ps, how old is your nursling?
  3. SucculentFlower

    SucculentFlower earthfirst!

    he's 3 months and 1 week old (or there abouts) thank you for asking! And thanks for the good feedback....the detox idea came from my midwife inreference to me taking supergreen algae caps during my pregnancy, she said that it causes the liver to let go of some toxins, and I thought that the wheatgrass juice might do the same. can see my Wilne's pic posted in my gallery..I have yet to figure out how to post it on a thread.
  4. clockworkorangeagain

    clockworkorangeagain femme fatale

    as it's good for you, i would predict that it's good for baby,,,
  5. Brighid

    Brighid Member

    Wheat grass juice should be limited to one serving per day while nursing, and not taken while pregnant.
  6. Maggie Sugar

    Maggie Sugar Senior Member

    It's not in Hale's. I can do some research, but following Brighid's recommendations should be good. Don't overdo it. I have seen green milk in mamas who are eating a lot of green vegetables, I have no idea if wheat grass would do the same.

    I'll see what I can find, OK?
  7. nimh

    nimh ~foodie~

    your baby is so cute!!
  8. SucculentFlower

    SucculentFlower earthfirst!

    thank you nimh...thanks for the greenmilk advise (brigid and maggie star) you think that my baby's green poopies are from all the greens that I eat? I'm not taking iron supplements, or prenats, nor am I eating black beans.
  9. greenthumb

    greenthumb Member

    with my baby boy everyone told me to cut back on the garlic,onions etc. I love garlic and apparently, so did my little man. Your baby will let u know if they dont like the taste. Iron is very important, especially for us women who loose a little bit during the month. Floradix is really good or u can just drink tons of dark berries. Your little ones stool matches what u eat, dont worry if sometimes it looks a bit undigested. Good luck!
  10. Maggie Sugar

    Maggie Sugar Senior Member

    Most likely not, though. It happens, as an anomoly, but not often. Green stools are usually from breastfeeding managment.

    Green poops can be from too much foremilk, over active letdown, scheduling feeds (if you go too long between feeds, the foremilk level rises) insisting on switching sides before baby is ready (they will let you know, some babies do better with one side per feeding) or iron supplements. Green stools do NOT indicate "lactose intolerance" which is almost never seen in babies. (ALthough some doctors seem to diagnose it for every little tummy problem. It is really really rare.) Occasional green stools are normal, not due to food you are eating and are not a problem.

    You don't need any more iron in lactation than a non lactating womyn does. It is NOT the same as pregnancy and prenatals are actually not appropirate for lactating mothers. You only need 15 mgs of iron a day when you are breastfeeeding, and you can get that from food. Extra iron is hard on your digestive and circulatory system, and only people with proven IRON DEFICIENCY ANEMIA (NOT just "low" iron due to pregnancy) need iron supplements. Most people with iron deficiency anemia can go off the iron in a month or two, few people need to be on them for life. If you aren't anemic, (or havn't had a hematocrit for months after being told you were anemic) you don't NEED iron supplemts and shouldn't be taking them. The iron in food is the best.

    I posted URLS for LLL's articles on overactive letdown the last time someone asked about green stools. If you can't find them ( let me know and I will find and post the direct URL to the articles again.
  11. Maggie Sugar

    Maggie Sugar Senior Member

    ANd yes, babies LOVE garlic. It does not usually give them tummy aches, that is just not true. In a couple of studies, babies whose mothers were given garlic tablets drank MORE milk than "unflavored" milk. It is very rare for garlic to upset the baby's tummy, he is getting it in a really different form than you are, so tummy upsets from it are rare.

    (And in adults, most stomach problems from garlic are either from garlic "salt" or treated "garlic powder" (which are highly processed food not the same as real, fresh garlic) or from garlic which has sprouted, and CAN cause adult tummy aches. Plant it if it sprouts, dont eat it.)
  12. SucculentFlower

    SucculentFlower earthfirst!

    Thank you Maggie Sugar...I had a feeling it was my letdown....Wilne likes to stop nursing because of I've been coddling him along to feed longer...though now he's spitting up more. I feed on demand, and I did read about the foremilk in that book "the womanly art of breastfeeding"...but felt like it just wasn't enough information. I will follow up in that link that you of blessings your way!
  13. Maggie Sugar

    Maggie Sugar Senior Member

  14. Maggie Sugar

    Maggie Sugar Senior Member

    Here is an article I used to have on my now defunt website (they had the nerve to want to charge me a couple of hundred a year for the space and I wasn't taking any income from it at all! It was ALL free information,,,,anyway)

    Overactive Ejection Reflex (Letdown) and

    Foremilk Hindmilk Imbalance

    Diana thought there might be something wrong with her milk. Her 4 week old baby often choked and sputtered when her milk let down, her baby had frequent large stools that often squirted out with force making loud almost comical noises. They were sometimes green and had curds of undigested milk in them. The baby seems to often be “gassy” in pain after nursing and was starting to cry and pull away when put to the breast. Diana herself found that her letdown (or ejection reflex) was sometimes painful and if the baby came off the breast during it her milk would spray forcefully. She had also experienced a few painful episodes of plugged ducts.

    She was told that her baby must be lactose intolerant or must be allergic to her milk. Diana sought help from her lactation specialist and learned that she was experiencing Over active Ejection Reflex (or OER) and that there were management techniques that could help both her and the baby and allow them to continue nursing and benefiting from the breastfeeding relationship.

    Human milk contains a large quantity of lactose. Lactose is a milk sugar that not only is the perfect food for a growing baby’s brain, but also helps the baby absorb other nutrients in her mother’s milk. It is almost unheard of for a human infant under the age of two years to be truly lactose intolerant. Most cases of perceived lactose intolerance in a baby this age are really OER or Foremilk/Hindmilk Imbalance.

    Foremilk is the watery milk produced at the beginning of a feeding to quench a baby’s thirst. It is high in lactose to be sweet and keep the baby interested in continuing the feeding while waiting for the hindmilk. Hindmilk is the milk that is produced at the later part of a feeding. It is high in fat and helps a baby to feel full and satisfied.

    Both Fore and Hind milk are needed for a balanced feeding yet sometimes either the mother’s body or improper breastfeeding management can cause problems with this balance.

    In OER the mother may have a very strong letdown, accompanied by discomfort and spraying. Some mothers say they can hear very loud gulping in the baby and sometimes even hear the milk hitting the baby’s stomach.

    Symptoms in Mother:

    · Strong painful letdown

    · Often frequent plugged ducts

    · Lots of leaking

    · Spraying of milk, some mama’s can spray several feet during ejection

    Symptoms in baby:

    · Gasping, choking, gulping or trouble “keeping up” with letdown

    · Green frequent stools

    · Pain and “gassiness”

    · Loud “tummy” noises

    · Sometimes a rejection of the breast and or struggling at the breast

    · Rapid weight gain, conversely babies who get only foremilk and then are taken off the breast too early in the feeding may have low weight gain

    · Spitting up large quantities of milk

    · Sometimes a lack of comfort nursing in older babies

    · Some babies may appear to want to wean in the late first or early second year because of discomfort and lack of comfort nursing

    The goal is to “tame” the letdown and allow the baby to ingest a better balance of hindmilk in each feeding.

    You may use a technique where the baby feeds as often as she likes, but only offer one side for a three to four hour period. The baby may nurse 2 or 6 times or more, but she is only given the breast for all the nursings in the time period. Also, the baby is taken off of the breast during the first letdown (or ejection) in each nursing. The milk can be allowed to flow into a clean cloth diaper or burp rag. After the letdown has subsided (usually around 20 to 50 seconds) the baby is put back on the breast and allowed to remain there as long as she likes. There should be no timing or scheduling of feeds.

    These instructions are not written in stone. A mother with engorged breasts may choose to relieve the engorgement by switching to the other side sooner than the prescribed time. Switching when very uncomfortable can help avoid plugged ducts. If mother feels discomfort she should do what she needs to to relieve the pain. The baby should be observed to make sure she is wetting at least 6 wet diaper in every 24 hour period. A baby over a month old may actually start to stool less frequently than before. This is normal and fine. The stools will probably be larger if less frequent. The green color should no longer occur if the balance is working.

    Some mothers find nursing “uphill” to be helpful. The mother can lie or sit reclined propped up with pillows or a bed sitting pillow (the author found this type of pillow to be the easiest way to use this position.) The baby lies on top of her and can then push away easily if the flow of milk becomes too forceful. Gravity is also believed to help stem the flow in this position.

    These techniques should help to promote a gentler letdown and also allow the baby to gain the advantage of receiving all the hindmilk she needs in each feeding. Some mothers can abandon the 4 hour per breast prescription after the problem seems resolved,(usually at least 2 weeks) some may need to continue it for a longer period of time or even use it for the entire months or years of nursing.

    This should only be practiced after a mother’s milk supply is established when the baby is at least 3 weeks old. If mother has these problems in a younger baby nursing longer on each side and not being obsessive about using each breast at every feeding will help. She can always take the baby off the breast during letdown to reduce the lactose load and forceful filling of the newborn’s stomach. One breast per feeding is fine if the baby is wetting at least 6 wet diapers and having at least 3 stools in 24 hours and seems happy and satisfied.

    Foremilk Hindmilk Imbalance

    Foremilk Hindmilk Imbalance is a very similar problem, but instead of the condition being caused by the mother’s unique physiology, it is often caused by improper breastfeeding management. Timing feeds, scheduling feeds and switching sides too frequently can all cause a baby to not ingest enough Hindmilk. One may be so religious about trying to use each breast in each feeding and/or so tied to a set amount of time when one feels the feeding must end that the feeding is ended before the baby has had a chance to get to the hindmilk. The baby then only gets foremilk, gets a lactose overload leading to tummy aches, green stools and often very frequent hunger. This may happen because the feeding was ended before the baby got to the fat containing hindmilk, leaving the baby hungry and frustrated.

    The symptoms are very similar to OER in the baby, but usually the mother herself does not have the symptoms listed above and/or may have a history of rigid feeding patterns or be following a “baby training” type program.

    The best piece of advice in this situation is to let the baby finish the first breast first. Be in no hurry to switch to the other breast or end the feeding. Some newborn babies may take 20 minutes to even get to the hind milk. The information that “the baby gets all the milk in the breast in 10 minutes” is a complete fallacy! Many babies need a good deal more time than that at most feedings. Although some can finish in just a few short minutes, as long as they are gaining properly and are well hydrated.

    The baby will let you know when to take her off the breast. Most babies will fall into a satisfied sleep and detach from the breast naturally or show the “drunken sailor” look when they are done.

    Keeping records of wet and stooled diapers and adequate weight gain (average is 4 to 7 oz a week during the first 4 months) will ensure that the baby is getting enough milk. (See the tear off sheet number00 Is My Baby Getting Enough Milk?) Following the above suggestions can help keep both mother and baby comfortable and satisfied.

    See also Overactive Letdown:It’s Symptoms and Consequences and Finish the First Breast First, both published in Leaven October/November 1995

    How to tell if your full term baby is getting enough milk, tear off sheet, La Leche League Int


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