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There's not enough calcium or protein in breast milk.

(46 Posts)
zumm Sat 10-Sep-11 13:38:42

Child, 16 mths old, has broken arm through a fall.
Sister now questioning whether I have been giving enough calcium or protein . This is something she questioned before (quote 'how can Zumm still be b/f, child is obviously not getting enough calcium since child is not getting any cow's milk') BTW I give a great deal of yoghurt and cheese to him (which may explain the snotty nose he now has, but anyhow), and am v careful to feed him a wide range of protein and veg foods (all organic, sigh).

As background, sister quit b/f at 6 weeks (I never questioned or indeed commented on this at the time; in fact, at the time I had no kids and didn't even give formula or b/f a second thought), so maybe this is why she is taking (what I see as) a pop?

I am low level angry at my sister since such comments seemed designed to hurt. I'd like to arm (scuse pun) myself with some pro-b/f facts for a child at this age. Unless of course I've been doing the wrong thing b/f him... still so upset about his broken bone. Ug.

EauRouge Sat 10-Sep-11 14:28:33

This might be useful. It sounds like he has a pretty good diet to me. Poor thing breaking his arm, I hope he recovers quickly.

hazchem Sat 10-Sep-11 14:39:58

i know i'm poking my nose in but just had to say.
the more i read about breastfeeding the more i want to continue to do it. It's just great, good for me, good for the baby.

Sorry to here your little one is hurt. hope the arm heals soon. good luck with your sister it sounds like she might be projecting her parenting choices onto you.

I'm trying to adopt "it works for us as a family" line to negative comments.

meditrina Sat 10-Sep-11 14:47:10

Perhaps by explaining to her that the fracture was the direct result of the fall - something that happens to all sorts of people who fall, and that none of the HCPs who assessed the injury and actually saw his bones on x-ray had any dietary concerns whatsoever. It is therefore a non-issue.

The diet sounds fine, BTW, and I hope he recovers soon.

Bumperlicioso Sat 10-Sep-11 14:50:31

Some children don't like cow's milk so don't have any of any kind.

Don't worry, your milk was designed for your baby and cow's milk was designed, well, for baby cow's.

Hope your lo gets better soon.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sat 10-Sep-11 16:26:40

Zumm so sorry to hear about baby Zumm. I think that your sister's comments may not be designed to hurt but may in fact be based in ignornance of the facts. Eau's link is lovely and will hopefully give you some good information to counter her comments with but really the best thing to say is like haz says, "well it works for us".

Our DC both had a time when they refused all milk and dairy and are both fine. There is plenty of calcium rich foods around.

Don't forget too that bfing is recommended for a minimum of 2 years so what you are doing is not only recommended but the best thing for you and your LO and is perfectly normal.

Have a look at reasons to be proud and see how much you've achieved already. Think about this next time your sister is spouting nonsense and please do feel proud of yourself.

flickor Sun 11-Sep-11 16:37:24

sorry about your little one - but feeding him the way you are he will here very quickly.
It is only a recent genetic mutation that actually allows us to digest cow's milk and in some cultures the drinking of cow's milk does not traditionally occur. For example the majority of calcium came from fish's bones for the Japanese and you would not call the Japanese unhealthy. In terms of protein dairy is not the biggest provider - meat is probably the best raw source and your sister would only have a point if you were a very strict vegan. Hope I can keep feeding my little girl as long as you have

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 12-Sep-11 12:25:14

How are you and baby Zumm now? Hope your sister hasn't made any more comments.

WoTmania Mon 12-Sep-11 13:10:54

How incredibly frustrating and hurtful.
Sorry to hear about your DS's arm, hopefully he'll heal quickly and BF has an analgesic effect so yet another bonus.

Myabe you could point out to your sister that you don't like these comments, the 'did you mean for that to sound as rude/hurtful as it did?' line. It mioght pull her up and make her think before commenting. I reckon she's either very ignorant about BF or jealous that you've BF for so long.

zumm Mon 12-Sep-11 13:41:26

Thanks all - just back from the hospital. I really appreciate your support and also the links.
WoTmania - you haven't met my sister...
I get similarly ignorant comments from otherwise lovely (but v anti b/f) mother in law (generally to do with very extended breastfeeding, oooooh how deeeestgussssting, and WRONG - erm, yes, maybe, but he's 1 not 21).
Sometimes it just feels like you're up against it - especially when you're trying to do the right thing - and MOST especially when you are completely private about the whole b/f thing (i.e. not something I ever discuss or do in front of any of them).
Ug, anyway, thanks. You all made me feel a lot better! And Baby zumm is doing very well smile

KarenMcCully Mon 12-Sep-11 14:40:49

Be confident in your decision to breastfeed. Kids break their arms, now if he had broken it three times in the last 6 months you may have a problem. My kid broke his arm at 18 months too. My kid has never had a day off sick from nursery or pre school ever!!, he is always the one that doesn't get sick while eveyone around him is puking. He's never had an ear infection etc etc. I might recommend you take Vitamin D because it's hard to come by and many people are low, and it is associated with Calcium in the body. I take 6000IU per day.

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 13-Sep-11 12:34:31

Exactly Zumm, he is still a baby, nothing wrong or disgusting about it.

After that Extradinary Bfing program a mum at playgroup was telling me how bfing past a year was disgusting, then went on a bit later to tell me how her 4 year old still had a bottle before bed. She wasn't too pleased when I pointed out that I was still feeding my 2 year old and what was the difference between that and giving a bottle? grin

You are doing brilliantly, stick with it Zumm.

zumm Tue 13-Sep-11 14:11:07

oh jilted wow - funny how they all become experts after these programmes. Last time I saw Mother In Law (the otherwise lovely person) she told me that, on last night's Supernanny, Jo Frost had to cure a really bad case of it (and by extension, clearly, b/f is something to be cured). I just change the subject tbh since I really see no point trying to convert her (for info, her own daughter - my, again lovely, SIL - had her breasts bound after giving birth such was her dislike of the idea of b/f).

Karen - I had wondered about the vit D issue and I think this is a really VALID comment (unlike my sister's weird comments). Have you ever given it to your kid/s and, if so, any brands or etc you wld recommend?

Sorry yours broke a bone too, ug, but pleased to hear of his general tip top health smile. Mine too has never been ill - - - til now... In fact, I think bf (which I found really hard to begin with) is the best thing we can do (or at least I have done) - which is why all these ignorant comments (usually) don't bother me. Cheers grrrls.

Beveridge Tue 13-Sep-11 14:32:16

Millions of years of evolution


Wiseman's dairies.

I know which one I believe provides the most approprite nutrition for human children.....grin

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 13-Sep-11 17:53:59

Jo Frost hasn't even had any children. If you mother-in-law mentions it again just ask her if she'd learn to drive from someone with years of experience as a passenger or someone who can drive and has a qualification in helping other to drive.

joyjac Tue 13-Sep-11 19:56:56

Karen's Vitamin D point is very good. Apparently most of the population is Vitamin D deficient and what we normally think of as supplement levels is just not enough. Our lifestyle ( more time indoors, use of really high factor sunscreen) means we don't get enough Vitamin D naturally.
Zumm breastfeeding will help calm your little guy when he is frustrated by the cast. Its an all-round parenting tool and not just a wonderful source of nutrition!

zumm Tue 13-Sep-11 21:31:06

Heheheh JiltedJohn (poor old Julie, she wasn't really a tart, was she?), I likes your logic. The most toe-curling occ was when FIL started laughing about extended breastfeeding... bitty and etc. Oh how we laughed. Good to have this bit of MN support smile.

Joyjac - yes. I had been wondering about supplements more generally - and yes, espesh because of sunscreen and etc. I'd really like to know what to do about this - maybe get a supp on prescription? Sd it just be vit D I wonder, or sd I go for a multi-vit. Again, take Bev's point about six millions of years of evolution grin (most of which didn't involve vit pills, or unilever).

northernruth Tue 13-Sep-11 21:34:34

FFs what a load of bollox. Tell your sister to mind her own uneducated business and worry about the plank in her own eye.

Breast milk is absolutely the best nutrition for kids. Cows milk is designed for cows. And kids get more calcium from green leafy veg. I gave up BF when DD was 12 weeks but I would never dream of criticising anyone - I bet she is just making herself feel better.

Hope your LO gets better soon and that you can turn a deaf ear to daft comments

zumm Tue 13-Sep-11 21:43:35

Northern, thanks. troub is my sister's about as bleedin educated as you can get (Oxbridge, City lawyer, argues for Engerland). She just makes these little asides and before you know it she's argued some fantastic case against you. I can't explain. It's ninja. Which is why I needed the facts you have all given me!

zumm Tue 13-Sep-11 21:45:21

PS and as for green leafy veg - yes, yes, and I'm not sure red meat is ideal for infants. But I need more facts please!

greenbananas Wed 14-Sep-11 08:03:28

Hi Zumm, sorry to hear about the broken arm, hope it is continuing to heal well.

The amounts of protein, calcium and other nutrients in your breastmilk are exactly right for your baby, even at 16 months and beyond. Sadly, your sister is talking out of her bottom (and she seems to believe the prevalent myth that all toddlers need cows milk in order to thrive).

Here is a link to some information about calcium in breastmilk (note that cow's milk does contain more calcium, but that the calcium in human breastmilk is much more easily absorbed by human babies).

Here is a link to some information about protein and other nutrients (it's from Dr Sear's website and does not contain academic references, but what he says is accurate and you can get loads of references by googling).

Actually, the proteins in breastmilk are really interesting - there are specialized proteins (e.g. lactoferrin) which bind with the iron in breastmilk and prevent it from being used by harmful bacteria - one of the many reasons that breastfed babies get fewer tummy bugs).

Doesn't sound like you will ever win an argument with your sister, but at least you can be confident that your breastmilk is providing good nutrition for your child - so you can afford to smile and ignore any hurtful comments made for dubious reasons...

ThePetiteMummy Wed 14-Sep-11 08:14:47

I was recommended Abidec vitamin drops by dd's paediatrician, which contain vitamin D, available in Boots. These are usually recommended for bf babies from weaning. He suggested we could give them until age 2, and no need to carry on beyond that unless she's a really faddy eater at that stage. I stopped bf at 14 months, but have continued with the vit drops, as I know through my work that vitamin D deficiency is indeed a widespread problem (in adults at least).

greenbananas Wed 14-Sep-11 08:21:50

Here's some information about breastfeeding and vitamin D smile

Thumbwitch Wed 14-Sep-11 08:21:57

Education is no measure of ignorance, I find. grin

Obviously if you were ONLY bf'ing your DS, she might have a point - but since you are clearly giving him solid foods as well, she has nothing. NOTHING! so tell her to bog off and mind her own.

Sorry your little boy has broken his arm but I bet it was nothing to do with his diet at all.

Gincognito Wed 14-Sep-11 09:41:31

Poor you, you sound like you don't have much real life support. I hope you take strength from the comments on here!

I agree with others that your breast milk will be perfectly balanced for you baby, but also that it might be an idea to supplement with vit D, and also possible a fish oil. This is more for you than him, as the system is all geared up to getting him the nutrients and so you might find yourself with a shortfall. Supplementing these things is especially important if you are planning on getting pregnant again anytime soon IMO.

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