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After hearing about studies which found that breast milk contains trace amounts of manmade chemicals includes perchlorate and toilet deodorizers, I vowed to never again sit upon another public toilet for the rest of my life. And I have, with a few exceptions. Each transgression has occurred after sushi and drinks at a fancy restaurant, or late at night in some neighborhood bar. As an avowed toilet bowl hoverer, I have grown to feel empowered in my new stance. Less contact with toilets means stronger leg muscles and a former sense of lavatory-related acquiescence, has been supplanted with a generalized sense of accomplishment. 

 

After reading about the recalled formula from Enfamil, Similac and Gerber, due to toxicants found within, it got me wondering if there is enough support for nursing mothers. We know immunologically speaking, that breast milk is superior, and that endorphins and oxytocin released..

 

 

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Breastfeeding: Going Beyond the Boob and Finding Bliss

By Pandora Peoples

 

After hearing about studies which found that breast milk contains trace amounts of man-made chemicals includes perchlorate and toilet deodorizers, I vowed to never again sit upon another public toilet for the rest of my life. And I have, with a few exceptions. Each transgression has occurred after sushi and drinks at a fancy restaurant, or late at night in some neighborhood bar. As an avowed toilet bowl hoverer, I have grown to feel empowered in my new stance. Less contact with toilets means stronger leg muscles and a former sense of lavatory-related acquiescence, has been supplanted with a generalized sense of accomplishment.  

 

After reading about the recalled formula from Enfamil, Similac and Gerber, due to toxicants found within, it got me wondering if there is enough support for nursing mothers. We know immunologically speaking, that breast milk is superior, and that endorphins and oxytocin released in nursing mothers increase mother-child bonding. We also know that the evolution of the species was not dependent upon baby formula corporations.

 

Nursing helps to shed pregnancy weight, tighten a prolapsed uterus, and tighten vaginal muscles. It is also linked to lower incidences in postpartum depression. Children who were breastfed tend to have more developed facial muscles, better jaw alignment, fewer cavities, better eyesight and a more developed taste pallet. Due to the variances in the taste of breast milk which reflect the diet of the mother, children who were nursed accept the flavor in a wide range of foods, whereas children who were formula-fed are less accepting of flavorful foods as they were accustomed to sweetness without variety.

 

A year before becoming pregnant, I became an avid juicer and made regular trips to the local farmer’s markets for ‘rabbit food’. I became obsessed with the idea of cleaning my breast tissue. As it turns out, mammary glands are like sponges, but they don’t fully develop until the third trimester of your first pregnancy, so eating healthy for your baby is most important during pregnancy and nursing.

 

Having helped clients reverse infertility with diet and herbs, I became interested in my own fertility. I wanted to cleanse every vital organ of heavy metals and every inorganic chemical. I used alterative blood purifiers, hepatic tonics, kidney tonics, and colon-cleansing herbs including burdock, milk thistle and dandelion root. Exercise and taking my vitamins daily became a top priority, spurned on by the thought of cleansing my breast tissue, sweating out any residual cosmetics and the aluminum-containing deodorant of my youth. The pectin in apples has a wonderful detoxifying effect. Parsley has a similar action, and I found the taste of parsley habit-forming. It is wonderful for the prevention of kidney stones.

 

Ruby Corrigan Anastasio, a birth doula and mother of four from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, has seen marked increases in breast milk for women who drink herbal tea before nursing order viagra online. “Blessed thistle and oat straw definitely increase milk supply.” I found that fennel bulb in stew and fenugreek in salads increased my milk flow. Constant nursing in the beginning, allowed me to rely solely on my mammary glands to nourish my baby. People assured me that the milk would increase and it did. At week six, my breasts were, engorged and I had mastitis.

 

Besides using hot compresses with massage, alternate sides while nursing, and add a tablespoon of turmeric to a glass of water, these actions help clear clogs ducts which cause the pain and inflammation of mastitis. Anastasio confirms a trick I employed, helps many women, “One of the most important things is to keep nursing the baby. If the clogged ducts are on the top of your breast, make the chin point at the irritated spot. This helps to drain that milk duck in particular.” She goes on to recommend, “For engorgement, use a cold raw cabbage leaf from the fridge. In moderation is eases the discomfort from engorgement. A comb over the area in the hot shower helps drain it too.” Anastasio warns, “If it doesn’t revolve on its own seek medical care. It’s an infection which may require antibiotics.”

 

Anastasio says a proper latch from the beginning is the key to developing confidence for a new mom in her nursing abilities. That confidence is crucial in her success. I asked her how friends and family can support a nursing mother. Anastasio stated, “Educate themselves on the benefits of breastfeeding and put their biases aside. Bring her a glass of water every time she sits down to nurse. Compliment her on how the baby is growing bigger and how well she is doing. Acknowledge the way she is nurturing the baby is the reason the baby is so healthy and growing so well.”

Was it my predilection for Indian foods containing aniseed and fennel seeds that made my colostrum come in during my sixth month of pregnancy, before my son’s birth? Or was it all the galactagogues (a substance which promotes lactation) I was eating: cream of asparagus, burdock root in my stirfry, flax in oatmeal, quinoa tabouli, and pumpkin seeds on salads? Or, could it be the nettle and red raspberry tea I drank throughout my pregnancy, which is associated with strengthening uterine muscles, but which are little known or under-appreciated milk-promoting herbs? My own mother didn’t receive the support she needed to nurse me, and she quickly gave up after a handful of days.  I wanted my son to have what I didn’t, so I was determined to drink my fenugreek seed tea to the point of smelling like incense in a meditation bookstore. Besides, fenugreek helps with weigh loss, and sweetened with honey it is rather tasty.

Anastasio has important parting advice for friends and family of pregnant moms. She avises, “Don’t tell her negative stories. That goes for pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding. Avoid being discouraging, saying things like: ‘You’re not making enough milk, that’s why he’s crying’, or ‘That’s a big baby, there’s no way you will give him enough milk’. Once she has that mind frame of ‘I can’t’  it’s really a downward spiral. The first step is that the latch is corrected immediately, not supplementation with formula. The baby should go through 8-10 diapers a day, this might mean being on the breast more often. I advise my clients not to give up in the first couple of weeks. Know that it is going to get better and better.”

 

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Ruby Corrigan Anastasio has attended over 75 births. For your east coast friends in search of an educated, nurturing, and experienced doula, she can be contacted at (508) 237-7922.

 

Pandora Peoples, is a writer, herbalist and psychic medium in Dennis, MA. She is a contributing writer to Spiritual Pregnancy (Llewellyn 2013). She is a wife, mother and nutritional counselor. Her show Cape Codified runs on local community TV Channel 99. You can contact her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 29 October 2013 14:50

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