Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fourth Baby Dies


BEIJING, China (CNN) -- Chinese officials in the northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region reported the death of a fourth baby Thursday in the country's expanding contaminated infant formula case. The tainted milk powder has already sickened more than 6,200 babies.

Disclaimer: This is a RANT. If you will be offended by a rant over women bottle feeding, then don't read this.

There are so many things that I'm an advocate for anymore. Home birthing, Unassisted Birthing, Breastfeeding, Not Vaccinating, Not Circumcising. There are *reasons* for me being so opinionated about them.

Sure sure, all of the bottle feeding women in America are going to say that this happened in China and could *never* happen here, right? Wrong. Because formula is MANUFACTURED and has to go through a long process of purification and preservation, WHY would it be exempt from this type of problem?

This is why women need to stop being so lazy, selfish, or viewing breasts as sexual objects only. Babies deserve to be breastfed. It is their right in life, from the womb. Yes yes, I know I know....there are women out there who truly *cannot* breastfeed. Really ladies, this is less than 2% of the population. Somehow ( insert sarcasm ) I manage to come across the entire 2% every year. It's shocking just how many women "cannot" breastfeed. :-/ Seriously?

And I've heard everything from "I want my breasts to be for my husband only", to "I am a Christian woman, and breastfeeding is indecent", to "My husband won't allow me to because it's gross", to "This is MY body, and it's too much work to breastfeed". Yeah, great reasons. If your husband doesn't want you breastfeeding because it's deemed "gross" or "inappropriate" by him...then he's got some issues to work through on his own. You don't deprive your baby of his/her essential right from birth, simply because your husband/partner has a distorted view of breastfeeding. And the selfish reasons? Why have children if that's how you're going to view breastfeeding? Motherhood is supposed to be selfless. Nothing less than that. Is it hard? Absolutely!

And there are reasons why breastfeeding comes harder to some women than others. Epidurals in birth can absolutely positively inhibit a good breastfeeding relationship. Drugs during childbirth can absolutely inhibit a good breastfeeding relationship. You're not just drugging yourself, you're drugging baby too. Cesareans can *ABSOLUTELY* inhibit a good breastfeeding relationship, because of the amount of narcotics given to mom, as well as the hour + baby spends in the nursery while mom is in recovery. It's very rare that a cesarean mom is able to breastfeed within the first hour of the baby's life, losing out on so much vital skin-to-skin contact. Women also think it's okay to give the baby a bottle to be able to have a family member feed so mom can sleep. This can create nipple confusion, as well as decrease your milk supply. Babies should be ( and deserve to be ) exclusively breastfed for at LEAST the first 6-8 months, and then continued to be breastfed even after you start solids. Many world organizations recommend babies to be breastfed until at least age 2. Babies are LITERALLY BORN TO BREASTFEED. This isn't an opinion, this is a fact. I absolutely LOVE the saying "My baby is a bottle baby. Some just don't take to it." :sigh: Poor babies. :(

Here are some great facts about breastfeeding vs. formula feeding:

* Recent studies show that babies who are exclusively breastfed for 6 months are less likely to develop ear infections, diarrhea, and respiratory illnesses. They may also be less likely to develop childhood obesity.

* Breastfeeding provides the baby with vital immunities against illness and childhood diseases.

* Breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancers.

* Breastfeeding is literally the perfect food for the baby's tummy. The tummy is able to break down breastmilk and digest without problems.

* Breastfeeding provides foremilk and hindmilk. Two consistencies to aid in hydration and nutrition. Formula only has one consistency.

* Breastfeeding mothers have increased self-esteem.

* Breastfeeding saves the family budget hundreds of dollars.

* Breastfeeding saves on health care costs.

* SIDS is seen less with breastfed babies.

Facts about Formula:

* Formula has no antibodies to pass to the baby

* Formula often produces gas and constipation in the baby

* Formula does NOT match the complexity of breastmilk. With formula, the baby will have the same exact taste at every single feeding. Breastfed babies have the taste of the food that mom eats, changing with every single feeding.

* Formula is harder for the baby's tummy to break down, since it is not human milk.

* Bottles have to be sterilized in between feedings. Breasts are always ready

* Formula is EXPENSIVE. Breastmilk is free.

* Bottle feeding does not exercise and condition the baby's jaw, as breastfeeding does.

* Formula fed babies are often overfed because the bottle continues to flow, and babies at a young age to not yet have the ability to refuse food when full.

* Obesity is more common amongst formula fed babies

Okay, rant over. I'm so sad for the 4 families in China who lost their babies over contaminated formula. I pray that they will find peace.

I also pray that maybe this will be a wake up call for formula feeding parents.


Zimms Zoo said...

I laughed at your sayings because I too have heard them all. One was it throws my back out everytime I do it. I suggested laying down.

I have breastfed all my babies. Unfortunately with #3 I went on an antibiotic that dried up my milk completely. No one around that suggested ways to get it to come back. She was 9 mths at this point. But she got non-stop ear infections until a dr friend suggested flax seed oil in her formula. It worked like a charm. My other kids have gotten ear infections, but not like her.

It is definitely a money saver. I love it and wouldn't trade it for the world.

I enjoyed your little rant.

BTW of all the people who say they can't nurse I have only known of 1 that couldn't. She tried to nurse exclusively and at 6 weeks the baby weighed less than when he was born. She took him to the hospital and he was de-hydrated. She cried for weeks. NO one helped her either. (this was a relative so I now the story first hand). She tried so hard. But changed to formula, because she was so scared of him going back to the hospital. With her second her didn't come in at all. Very strange! She was devastated. Later found out that some drugs(presciption) that she had been on might have affected this. Anyway most people can they just don't want too!

Emily said...

Thank you for this! There is nothing one can't accomplish if they truly want to succeed. Anyone who believes that formula is safe is either naive or in denial. Formula puts babies at risk! Breastfeeding is 100% safe, 100% healthy, and will work for all babies. Breast milk is 100% sterile, unable to be contaminated, and needs no heating or preparation. Breast milk is made specifically for human babies. And if a woman truly cannot breastfeed, she can spend that formula money on donated breast milk. THERE IS NO EXCUSE NOT TO GIVE BABIES BREASTMILK.

Poor said...

Hello. My name is Edgar and I'm an editor at OpposingViews.com, the debate website. Since we both cover parenting issues, I thought I'd drop you a note. I would've e-mailed you but I couldn't find an address.
See, we're currently having a discussion about whether or not formula feeding harms babies. You can see it here:
Although vetted experts are the ones doing the debating, anyone can contribute by choosing a side and posting comments about the experts' arguments.
Check it out and, if you have the time, let me know what you think at eacosta@opposingviews.com