Breastfeeding news, views & support

Favorite Breastfeeding Pages and Groups on Facebook? (Award time!)

Facebook is full of lovely supportive breastfeeding groups. Here at Lactivist I wanted to acknowledge them for their great work but I need your help. Please leave a comment on www.lactivist.net with a link to your favorite group. Then click the like button on the other groups you like. You might find some new ones, or some old friends. Please check that you are not nominating someone who has already been nominated because I will delete doubles. (It will just be impossible to see who is being voted for otherwise) Please don’t vote for Lactivist on Facebook – I can’t award myself The group or page with the most ‘likes’ will win the right to use this – but I’ll put the name of the group in it! Please make sure the group you are linking to is not a closed group – a lot of the breastfeeding pages on Facebook are closed to make them safe from closure.   If your group gets nominated please feel free to use this:   And this is where you need to link to so people can vote –...

Ask Aunty Lactivist – constipation in 16 week old

Aunty Lactivist is all of us so please leave a comment if you can help with any ideas. Sharing your experiences will help other people. Dear Aunty Lactivist Is this a 16 weeks growth spurt? My daughter is suddenly feeding lots and is quite clingy – all of which I am attributing to a growth spurt but might this also be affecting her bowel movements? She used to ‘go’ every day, first thing in the morning but last week she went 4 days with no poo so I gave her a drink of cooled boiled water which seemed to help. It’s now been another 2 days – might it be linked?...

Lactivist buy and sell group on Facebook

The original Lactivist Breastfeeding Buy and Sell was deleted by Facebook. This is a new page for you to use https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lactivist-Breastfeeding-Buy-and-Sell/225099274215679 but there is also one at http://www.lactivist.net/?page_id=3457#/20111002/breastfeeding-friendly-buy-and-sell-intro-ple-905145/ which will not get deleted! Please share the link and feel free to use it as long as you are not promoting your business. If you are interested in advertising your business on lactivist.net please see – http://www.lactivist.net/?page_id=1735 Just for reference and in case it turns up again, the original Facebook page was at...

Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme – for pubs, cafes, shops…..

Breastfeeding in pubs supported by new scheme By Adam Pescod http://www.morningadvertiser.co.uk/news.ma/article/91037 05/07/2011 Breastfeeding in public places – such as pubs and cafes – is now being officially encouraged by a new scheme. Venues can sign up to Breastfeeding Welcome, then display a special window sticker so that mothers know they won’t be made to feel uncomfortable if they wish to breastfeed there. Islington, in north London, is the latest place to launch the scheme with around 150 venues signed up so far, including pubs, cafes and restaurants. One of the scheme’s local supporters Geetie Singh MBE, owner of the Duke of Cambridge in Islington, said: “I think that a business, having introduced this as a policy, should not only acknowledge it, but fully support it by actively making somebody feel comfortable. “I’m really pleased so many women feel confident breastfeeding in my pub. Becoming Breastfeeding Welcome has been great for us as a business – I hope it will be good for other businesses too” Other venues in Islington include the Rosemary Branch theatre pub, Costa Coffee and the Garden Court Café at Sadler’s Wells theatre. Many other venues, from a city farm café, to old-fashioned family-run cafes, are now Breastfeeding Welcome too. Visit the site by clicking...

New book on nutrition by the author of The Politics of Breastfeeding.

COMPLEMENTARY FEEDING by Gabrielle Palmer New book on nutrition by the author of The Politics of Breastfeeding. Gabrielle Palmer’s groundbreaking book The Politics of Breastfeeding highlighted the controversies surrounding the aggressive promotion of breastmilk substitutes. She now turns her attention to complementary feeding the first foods that a child eats besides milk. For most of human existence, children went without industrially processed foods and branded food products. Can we applaud the progress of the way children are fed today? In our unequal world one billion people risk their health through overconsumption while two billion people are hungry. The health problems of both groups start in early childhood. The power and influence of the food industry has increased dramatically in recent decades. Seductive and often unethical modern marketing methods have led to the promotion of unsuitable, unnecessary and sometimes harmful baby foods. Yet not all industrially processed foods are bad and not all natural foods are good. Both poor and rich children may be inappropriately fed. What lessons can we learn from history? How do cultural and religious beliefs influence the choice of food? Can government initiatives have any effect? How can we provide good nutrition for all infants? This brief, compassionate and thought-provoking new book will be of interest to anyone who is curious about the world, its children and their nutrition, and will stimulate discussion and debate as part of the campaign to create a world where health for all is a true goal. Complementary Feeding: Nutrition, Culture and Politics is published by Pinter & Martin. Category: nutrition ISBN: 978-1-905177-42-4 RRP: £9.99 Format: paperback Size: 135mm x 216mm Page...

How to make knitted breasts

These knitted breasts allow nurses and other health professionals to easily show women important massage techniques that let them stimulate their milk production and express their valuable first drops of milk. They are particularly helpful when there are language barriers. Woollen breasts are also an excellent free alternative to expensive teaching aids that are used by health professionals to teach new mothers to express by hand before going on to use an electric pump. Knitted Breast #1 is from www.knitty.com and the pattern was  invented by a woman who lost a breast due to cancer. You can read the whole story on the link above (it is a good story!) but here is my favorite bit: “I finished my first knitted titty an hour before the party and wore it with one of my favorite lacy underwires. When a friend, who had been following the whole titty saga, saw me she remarked, “You really did a great job! Your left breast looks almost as good as the right one — a bit lumpy but very realistic.” “You know,” I replied, “It was my right breast that was removed.” ” Knitted breast pattern #2 is by the same person but looks slightly easier to knit.       Knitted breast pattern #3 is a link to a PDF and it is from the Lactation Consultants of Great Britain website. Link to the PDF is here: http://www.lcgb.org/knittedbreastpattern.pdf Knitted breast pattern #4 is another link to a PDF on the Bliss website.    ...

Knitted Breast Pattern #4

Help new mums provide the best care for their babies In 2008 Bliss launched an appeal for people across the UK to knit woollen breasts that can then be used to show mothers of premature and sick babies how to begin expressing their milk. The knitted breasts allow nurses and other health professionals to easily show women important massage techniques that let them stimulate their milk production and express their valuable first drops of milk. They are particularly helpful when there are language barriers. Woollen breasts are also an excellent free alternative to expensive teaching aids that are used by health professionals to teach new mothers to express by hand before going on to use an electric pump. Click here to download the pattern and knit a breast to help mums offer the best support to their babies. “I have taught medical students, midwifery students, medical staff, nursing and midwifery staff with the knitted breasts. Pregnant women and new mums are shown everyday with the knitted breasts. These have been a great success and are really helpful”. Kate Mcfadden, Infant Feeding Co-ordinator, Liverpool Women’s Hospital The knitted breasts are a valuable donation in themselves, but this is a great opportunity to get groups of friends together to take part in ‘knitathons’ and other fundraising...

Ask Aunty Lactivist – Breast pumps in Brighton?

Aunty Lactivist is all of us so if you can help at all please leave a comment. Dear Aunty Lactivist, I live in Brighton, Sussex, where I understand that Lactivists are quite active. Are you aware of anywhere that I can either buy (cheaply) or hire (ditto) an electric breast pump in that area? I don’t find the manual ones so good. Any information would be really helpful. My little one, is exclusively breast fed and is 3 months old and I want to continue but just need a bit of help expressing in the short term. Thanks!...

Another nail in the coffin for positive breastfeeding awareness

This is from the Brew Drinking Thinking Brew Breaks website, I’ve just copied the first couple of paragraphs over you can read the rest of the article here: http://www.bdtbrewbreak.com/2011/07/breastfeeding-in-public.html It surprises me that the Civic centre staff told a breastfeeding mum that she couldn’t breastfeed there because it was a multicultural centre – the Koran supports breastfeeding! Breastfeeding in Public “Put those puppies away, love. We’re trying to conduct council business!” Another nail in the coffin for positive breastfeeding awareness has been hammered in this week. Emma Mitchell was visiting her local civic centre was told she could NOT breastfeed. While attempting to research how to become a babysitter (in line with her local authorities’ guidelines) was told she couldn’t breastfeed her son on the premises. Staff at the Civic Centre in Oldham told Ms Mitchell that breastfeeding was not allowed within the confines of centre as it was a multicultural centre. Despite reassurances from Emma that she would feed her son discreetly she was told to go to the nearest shopping centre in Manchester to find somewhere to feed him. Had she listened to the helpful instructions of the receptionist Emma would have to leave the civic centre trek to the shopping mall to feed her son and then come back to the centre for the information she that was after. The unpleasantness of the experiences caused Emma to leave the centre and go home, without the information she came for in the first...

Thinking of training to be a breastfeeding peer counsellor?

Peer counselors are mothers in the community with personal breastfeeding experience who are trained to support, encourage, answer questions and address common breastfeeding worries. Lactivist is really proud to have Juno’s diary from when she was training to be a breastfeeding peer counsellor. Juno is a busy mum with 5 children and years of breastfeeding experience. Her diary is not just a record of the subjects covered in the course but a personal account of how the subjects made her feel and what she learnt from being a part of the group. week 1 – Juno becomes part of part of this team – a network of volunteers supported by the Primary Care Trust. week 2 –  Communication and building up a trusting relationship. week 3 – All about the benefits of breastfeeding. week 4 – Anatomy of the Breast and Hormones of Lactation week 5 – The Composition of Human Milk week 6 – Barriers to Breastfeeding week 7 – Basic Breastfeeding Management week 8 – Getting Ready for Baby and Ideas to Make Breastfeeding Work in Day-to-Day Living week 9 – Understanding Baby Needs from Infancy to Toddlerhood week 10 – Breastfeeding in Different Situations week 11 – Examining Our Attitudes Towards Other People If you are interested in training to be a Breastfeeding Supporter yourself, then it is worth asking your local midwife or health visitor if there are any courses in your area. Some areas have local schemes eg Real Baby Milk in the southwest of England, not affiliated to BfN LLL ABM NCT Here are some main contact details La Leche League on 0845...

Beautiful Breastfeeding Nighties on Sale at Born

This Hotmilk Harmony In Chaos Nightie is possibly the most glamorous thing I have ever seen for breastfeeding mums and I”ve just noticed that Born have a sale on HOTmilk nightwear and it’s reduced by £12! HOTmilk bras and nightwear are very supportive and perfect for when breastfeeding has been established, so after the yo-yoing in size you get when you are first breastfeeding. They have drop down cups and under bust elastic, so they are comfortable as well as practical. I love the colour too! Go on, treat yourself! Or better still get someone else to treat you www.borndirect.com...

Have you a happy breastfeeding in public story?

This wonderful story of a lucky mum comes from the Natural Nursery Blog, it has cheered me up for the whole week! If you have any happy breastfeeding in public stories this is the place to share them, I have never heard of anyone else being given chocolates though! I was often given glasses of water without asking which was brilliant because in almost 2 years of breastfeeding I forgot that it made me really thirsty every single time! Have you found anywhere with understanding staff? Anywhere that someone has gone out of their way to make you comfortable? Please let us know! Fay’s breastfeeding story – breastfeeding in public   Fay & Sam on the comfy chair “Excuse me madam, were you about to breastfeed your baby” the waiter asked. “Oh no” I thought, “here it comes.” We were at a family party at a local restaurant with my 2-month old Samuel. I had heard stories of mums breastfeeding in public being asked to leave or cover up and I was expecting just this humiliation. I flushed deep red and nodded… “Would you like a more comfortable chair” the waiter continued. “Oh….yes, thank-you”, I was dumbfounded. After changing my chair, the waiter then proceeded to bring me a complimentary cafetiere of decaffeinated coffee and chocolates. Talk about VIP treatment. Sam is now 7 months old and I am still partially breastfeeding. I can’t say I’ve had this reception everywhere when I have been breastfeeding in public (more’s the pity) but I can certainly say I’ve never felt uncomfortable. I’ve been so surprised by how positive everyone around me...

What are your favorite Lactivist breastfeeding badges? (poll)

Lactivist has stopped selling badges individually – it cost me money when people bought just one but I am selling them in lucky dip packs of 50. I could bring them back in packs of 5 but if I do, which designs would you like to see? You can choose 5 options. [poll id=”20″] Also, do you prefer them big or small? [poll...

Ask Aunty Lactivist – Storing Breastmilk in a Hotel?

Aunty Lactivist is all of us so please leave a comment if you can help with your experience, ideas or links to other sites. Dear Aunty Lactivist I’m off for a girly weekend, booked a long time ago. Just emailed a hotel I’m staying in Friday and awaiting my reply.   It’ll be the very first time I have stayed away from my 8 month old little one overnight, (although I am back at work part time so she has my pumped milk in a bottle the few days I’m at work), so I will be pumping while away from her for two days / one night. Have kindly asked the hotel if I could have access to/use of fridge to store pumped milk, a microwave to sterilise my pump and freezer to pop some freezer packs in, to keep milk cool on the long journey home. Anyone have any experiences of this? I’m in the uk, but any advice will be greatly appreciated! Anything I can say if they refuse etc??...

Ask Aunty Lactivist – Twin Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Toddler

Aunty Lactivist is all of us so if you can help with any ideas, experiences or links to other websites please leave a comment below. Dear Aunty Lactivist I’m pregnant with twins & really don’t want have to wean my two year old. Any positive experiences of continuing breastfeeding a toddler through a twin pregnancy? Thank you x...

The Horrible Facts on Infant & Baby Formula (Video)

Thank you to the Analytical Armadillo for finding this. The video links to a site that goes into even more detail about the ingredients of infant formula and I’ve copied it after the video too. The original is here http://old.news.yahoo.com/s/ac/20100923/lf_ac/6152012_ten_things_you_may_not_know_about_baby_formula_1   Ten Things You May Not Know About Baby Formula Amanda Whitney Amanda Whitney – Thu Sep 23, 12:26 pm ET The use of baby formula as the primary method of infant feeding has exploded in popularity over the past few decades. Formula has become increasingly healthier in recent years with the addition of chemicals like DHA and lutein, both of which are naturally found in human milk. In spite of these advancements, there is some information that the manufacturers aren’t advertising. Take a look at these ten little-known facts about infant formula. 1. The linings of formula cans contain bisphenol-A, or BPA, a plastics chemical which mimics the female hormone estrogen. Exposure to BPA can potentially cause reproductive problems and early puberty. Experts are concerned that the chemical may leach into the formula and be ingested by infants, who are far more vulnerable to adverse effects from contaminants than adults. Liquid and ready-to-feed formulas are more susceptible to this leaching than powdered formulas. The FDA reports that they are currently accepting applications for alternative substances with which to line formula cans; however, they do not recommend changing a child’s feeding habits based solely on this concern. 2. Feeding an infant formula can increase the child’s risk of developing food allergies and inflammatory bowel disease, a disease which encompasses the chronic conditions ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, according to new research performed by...

Beckham could better PCT’s best breastfeeding efforts (from the Pulse)

This is from the Pulse website which says it is intended for health professionals only. One picture of Victoria Beckham breastfeeding would do more to turn around the UK’s terrible statistics on breastfeeding than any number of ill-conceived PCT schemes, argues The Jobbing Doctor Yesterday I had a meeting with three people from the Primary Care Trust. They have been negotiating a day and time when I had an hour to spare, so they could talk to me about ‘The Baby Friendly Initiative’. I ran out of stalling tactics, so the meeting took place and I really had no idea what it was about and what the content was. The meeting was, in microcosm, an excellent exemplar of exactly what is wrong with the way the NHS is managed at the moment. The chairman of the PCT, a member of the Professional Executive Committee who is a speech therapist and a former nursing sister on an orthopaedic ward wanted the Jobbing Doctor’s opinion on an initiative they were planning to roll out. I am pleased that they are actually seeking the opinions of Jobbing Doctors, because it might help them. What is the ‘Baby Friendly Initiative?’, I asked – ‘I’ve never heard of it.’ It turns out to be a programme to help encourage more women to breastfeed. This is a laudable aim, as breastfeeding is natural, healthy for mother and baby, and clinicians should encourage it. The rates in the UK are quite low, apparently, when compared to the Netherlands or Norway so the Government are spending our money appointing people to roll out this initiative. ‘How do...

Stacey and Dylans Story – IVF and Breastfeeding

This beautiful story is from Stacey who is a regular on the Lactivist Facebook Page.   I was 17 when I was diagnosed with primary ovarian failure, which basically meant I was going through the early menopause.  It felt like my world had ended.  My doctors referred me to Liverpool women’s hospital to explain the consequences relating to conceiving naturally.  They explained I could never have children of my own as it was simple I had no eggs. Only it wasn’t simple to me, it was heart breaking but my only option was to be placed on the ovum (egg) donation waiting list.  I was offered 2 attempts of IVF by the NHS but only if I could find a donor myself or wait a long 4 years, the expected time for a egg donor to become available. I was only 17 so I though by the time I was 21 I would have my chance at becoming a mummy.  Yes a little earlier than I had planned but I had no other option. My 21st birthday came and went, so I telephone the ovum donator coordinator at Liverpool who sadly explained that the wait had extended to another 4 years as there were 300 people on the waiting list at Liverpool and only 2 people donated last year. After a lot of tears I accepted the news and moved on with my life.  My 25th birthday came and went and I again telephoned Liverpool and once again was told that there were no donors coming forward, and to expect another possible 4 year wait. This time I felt...

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