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Bureaucrats try food stamp diet


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you might be right - if there are work requirements now, i'm actually pleased about that. but i haven't kept on welfare rules for a few years.

and you're right if your not taught to do it, and if you can get formula for free - then why bother with it.

Edited by tryska (log)
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Heather- you're dead-on about low-income mothers. Some states are working to change that. Illinois, for example, passed a law stating that employers must give their employees adequate breaks for pumping and must provide a sanitary place to do so other than a restroom (gross).

One of the mothers who employed me as a nanny breastfed her child for over three years- she had a very intense, prominent, fast-paced career and managed to pump in the strangest places. FistFullaRoux, her child could ask for it but she was decidedely NOT a Jerry Springer type. You need to educate yourself- the world average for breastfeeding is about four years, the World Health Organization recommends a MINIMUM of two years, and some have inferred that three was the preferred age for weaning at the time of Christ. It's certainly not a new thing.

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Heather- you're dead-on about low-income mothers. Some states are working to change that. Illinois, for example, passed a law stating that employers must give their employees adequate breaks for pumping and must provide a sanitary place to do so other than a restroom (gross).

Do the hospitals in Illinois supply pumps to mothers who can't afford to rent? Hospital grade is what it takes to keep up a supply, and when I rented one it was about $60 a month. Buying a new one is $3-400.

Plus, pumping milk requires the means to sterilize the containers, or the money to buy storage bags, the means to transport it, freezer space at home... and she has to not smoke, or drink.

It's a tough issue.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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WIC supplies breastpumps (since we're talking about low-income mothers here). Also, even for higher income mothers breastpump rental/purchase is cheaper than formula. You can both smoke and drink while breastfeeding. It may not be ideal, but the medical community seems to agree that the risks of breastmilk from a mother who smokes or drinks are less than the risks from formula. The amount of alcohol transferred to breastmilk is very small (even after you adjust for the baby's body weight), and basically nil if you wait a couple hours after having a drink. I am not aware of any suggestions that one shouldn't smoke while breastfeeding. Most workplaces don't permit drinking anyway.

Also, unless your baby has very serious health issues you don't need to sterilize the containers you store milk in. And if your baby DOES have very serious health issues, all the more reason to breastfeed, plus you'd have to be sterilizing bottles anyway. Breastmilk itself is not sterile. Also, most manufacturers of high-quality pumps want you to boil the parts the first time you use them (who knows what happened in the factory), but then warn that repeated boiling will cause damage.

Even for newborns who are fed formula very few pediatricians think sterilizing is necessary. Gone is the 1950's era housewife, boiling everything in sight, thank goodness.

If one can't afford storage bags, clean glass containers with screw-on tops (like the kind mayonaisse or Snapple comes in) work very well.

Breastmilk can safely be left at room temperature for at least ten hours, and can be refrigerated for up to eight days. It is better to give babies breastmilk that has never been frozen, anyway (enzymes, white cells, antibodies, and neural hormones are destroyed during freezing).

Yes, it _is_ a tough issue, but I think the primary barriers for most women are cultural/educational rather that financial/logistical.

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Nicotine is passed through breastmilk, according to a biochemist I know.

Yes, it _is_ a tough issue, but I think the primary barriers for most women are cultural/educational rather that financial/logistical.

I think it's a lot of each. I'm a stay-at-home mom, and found breastfeeding exhausting and painful initially, then tedious and time consuming afterwards, and it was for the most part my main duty. Throw a major stressor like poverty in the mix and I may have thrown in the towel if I even started at all.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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I would call that an educational barrier- because if breastfeeding is more painful, tedious, or time-consuming than formula something is wrong and a lactation consultant or local La Leche Leauge leader could be helpful. It's funny, because in the 1950-1970s, _only_ poor women breastfed in this country (largely) and now it's often seen as a "rich" thing. The "exhausting" part I would call a cultural barrier. For you they were obviously not insurmountable since you continued for 18 months, for which you are to be commended. As for stressors like poverty, breastfeeding also gives you very stong hormonal surges in prolactin and oxytocin (same hormone as during orgasms) which make you feel loving and nurturing toward your baby. Breastfeeding greatly lowers a child's risk for being abused and the American Academy of Pediatrics acknowledges in their statement on breastfeeding that nursing moms are much, much more likely to feel competent as mothers and noted that the psychological benefits to mothers were considerable. So if you look at it in a different light, nursing could actually _lower_ your stress.

I understand that not everyone has the desire or ability to breastfeed, and this thread does not need to turn into a debate. I just feel that I have to correct misinformation about breastfeeding since I feel so strongly about it.

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Oops, one more thing :biggrin:

As for smoking, a risk-benefit assessment may determine that a smoking mother should breastfeed. The baby is inhaling second-hand smoke (very bad) either way, and breastmilk, even with some contaminants from cigarettes (which are nearly insignificant compared with what the babe is inhaling in his home anyway) is still more beneficial than formula--

with maternal smoking, incidence of respiratory illness is 7 times higher for formula fed babies than for breastfed babies (lalecheleague.org)

The COD once felt that smoking was a contraindication for breastfeeding, but because of evidence that it is better for smokers to breastfeed than formula feed they eliminated it from their list of contraindications. Evidence shows that breastfeeding may mitigate the effects that passive smoking has on the baby. Of course, the best course would be to quit smoking, but it's important for smoking mothers to realize that formula may very well be riskier than contaminated breastmilk.

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I would call that an educational barrier- because if breastfeeding is more painful, tedious, or time-consuming than formula something is wrong and a lactation consultant or local La Leche Leauge leader could be helpful.

Had a consultant. Went to the meetings. Even joined a new mom support group. I still found it tedious at times, especially in the beginning. And it was painful, initially.

I find parenting incredibly rewarding, but much of the day-to-day stuff is tedious and time consuming.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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In most places WIC mandates what products and the sizes that you can buy. I am not sure of the exact mechanics of the program but I do see little tags next to prices on items in the store indicating they are WIC approved.

Very true. The choices for someone on WIC are very limited, and often include very little nutritious food (unless you count the juice). Not knocking the program too hard - I know several women who made up the difference between hunger and feeding themselves properly through WIC - but it doesn't encourage wise food choices by any means.

Kathy

Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all. - Harriet Van Horne

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