Yes, the Foreman household has been there and done that when it comes to breastfeeding. I know it may seem a bit strange for a man to give advice on this subject, but I am always willing to share my experiences with all who will listen/read. Breastfeeding could possibly be the most important thing you do for your child in their lifetime. Yes, it is that important. Colostrum ("first milk") is critical for the formation of an infant's healthy digestive and immune systems. The milk that follows is the "perfect food" for your child. It is loaded with the ideal balance of protein, fat, enzymes, etc. for your baby's growth needs.
Science has shown that breastfed babies have fewer health issues than formula-fed babies, and have a lower incidence of conditions such as ear infections, diarrhea, UTIs, diabetes, allergies and many more. Regretfully, breastfeeding is looked at as painful and a chore. I have even heard mothers say they couldn't do it. Maybe these tips will give you ideas on how to make it easier, so you can stick to your breastfeeding program. Here are a couple of my suggestions:
- Avoid gas-producing foods. If they give you gas, they usually will give your baby gas. Sometimes using a good digestive enzyme with your meals and snacks can keep this from occurring.
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine. (This is simple common sense, but I still run into people who have that "deer in the headlights" look when I say it).
- Omega-3s from fish oil (especially high DHA content formulas)
- Stinging Nettle (promotes milk production)
- Vitex (one of the best herbs for promoting milk production)
One of the biggest hurdles for continuing with breastfeeding is having sore nipples. Applying calendula, comfrey or chickweed to the sore areas (not near feeding times) can help. It will be easiest to find comfrey in a topical form.