This is such a beautiful post about weaning, taken from the blog ‘The Single Crunch‘, written by Kimberly, a work at home mama to two girls. This beautiful story had me welling up as I fast approach this place in my life also. I felt the need to share this story as it is so touching, and I am sure may people can relate to it. This is a topic that is not talked about enough. There is so much focus placed upon the actual act of breastfeeding, and the duration of breastfeeding, but not a lot of attention to what happens afterwards. I would love to hear more about other people’s weaning stories and experiences.
-‘Even in the midst of tears and pain, liquid gold flows forth‘
An inspiring and courageous story of Jennifer Coias from Brazil, who so tragically lost her baby due to stillbirth at 35 weeks, who in the face of everything, as a way of honoring her son Jude, is giving the amazing gift of breast milk to donate to other babies in need. She is still only 9 days post partum, and has been pumping around the clock with an old, used, broken pump held together by a bungee cord!
Through heart-felt donations from individuals, including a couple of mothers who had lost babies of their own, intactivists Jennifer had worked with in the past (the Barefoot Intactivist, among others), and a gift from The International Breastfeeding Symbol Store, they were able to secure a quality pump for Jennifer, as well as a few much needed breast shields and supplies.
The pump is currently on its way via flight (with a friend) to Brazil and we all hope it will be in Jennifer’s hands soon.
Truly, she is the epitome of all that World Milksharing Week represents: liquid love bottled for any baby and mother in need.
I need some help!! In the build up to World Breastfeeding Week (1st-7th Aug) I would love to collect as many photos as possible of all you beautiful breastfeeding mamas and babies to add on here!!
Does anyone have any good ones which they wouldn’t mind sharing?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for your help!
- Breastfeeding Resource for all Mothers (smiffybaby.com)
- Birth Practices Which Interfere With Breastfeeding (smiffybaby.com)
A very interesting snapshot from an article found online at www.wired.com.
The full article ‘Liquid Gold: The Booming Market for Human Breast Milk’, discusses both the underground and for-profit organizations involved with breast milk donations and milk banks. To see the full article, click the above link.
I choose to add this piece from the article to my blog, as I think it outlines brilliantly some of the less familiar health benefits of breast feeding.
The overall benefit of feeding babies breast milk instead of formula has been well established. In 2004, the Surgeon General issued a report drawing on research from the US Department of Health and Human Services and several peer-reviewed journals showing that babies who are formula-fed instead of breast-fed are at an increased risk for asthma, acute ear infections, diarrhea, and SIDS. The advantages of feeding breast milk to babies are touted by some to be lifelong, potentially lowering the odds of obesity and boosting IQ by as much as 5 points.
Researchers have only recently begun to identify the mechanisms underlying breast milk’s powerful effects. Look at it through a microscope and you can see that breast milk is abuzz with white blood cells, pearly fat globules, and fuzzy balls of protein. At higher magnification, you can make out the millions of Y-shaped molecules that are an infant’s primary defense against infection: antibodies. Produced by the mother’s immune system in response to the pathogens in her environment, these antibodies are passed along to the baby to fight off illness. Mothers’ milk has other protective properties and potential uses as well. Sugars called oligosaccharides, long thought to have no function, since infants can’t digest them, are now known to adhere to a baby’s intestinal lining, allowing good bacteria in while repelling harmful bugs, like a discerning bouncer at a hip club. Fatty acids called DHA and AA serve as brain food, stimulating neurological development. One fatty acid-protein hybrid nicknamed Hamlet (Human Alpha-lactalbumin Made Lethal to Tumor Cells) has been found to kill 40 different types of cancer cell lines in the lab and is being researched as a treatment for patients. Breast milk also contains a host of stem cells. While scientists don’t know yet what they’re doing there, researchers suspect they may have the ability to differentiate into disease-fighting agents and could one day be harvested to treat an array of ailments, thus sidestepping the ethical concerns of harvesting stem cells from human embryos.
- Liquid Gold: The Booming Market for Human Breast Milk (punjapit.wordpress.com)
- Is Breast Milk the Key to Mother-Baby Bonding? (healthland.time.com)
- The Breast Milk Black Market [Breast Intentions] (jezebel.com)
- Breast Milk – Benefits (almurtaza110.wordpress.com)
Coconut has become my new best friend! Finally a superfood that not only works wonders for our bodies, but also tastes delicious! It is creeping in to my diet in a variety of different forms, and I just can’t get enough-coconut water, coconut oil, coconut cream, coconut milk… It is enlightening to know that something so yummy can actually be this good for me!
Back in the day, coconut oil was wrongly accused of increasing cholesterol levels and was considered a ‘bad fat’. It is only in recent years that modern medical scientists are discovering what traditional islanders have known for thousands of years. All over the globe people from different cultures, races, languages and religions have honored the coconut as a valuable source of food and medicine. Wherever the coconut palm grows, the people have known its powers as an effective medicine. It has long be used in traditional local folk medicine for treating a number of different health problems including, asthma, bronchitis, burns, colds, constipation, cough, flu, irregular or painful periods, jaundice, malnutrition, nausea, rashes, scabies, scurvy, skin infections, sore throats, swelling, syphilis, tuberculosis, tumors, upset stomaches, general weakness and wounds.
Although the coconut is renowned for its health benefits due to its fiber and nutritional content, it is the coconut oil, which is the true beauty.
“Coconut oil is the healthiest oil on earth.”
-Bruce Fife, N.D.
Lauric acid is a medium-chain fatty acid and is one of the most prized substances of coconut oil. Pure coconut oil contains around 50% Lauric acid, making the most abundant natural source of Lauric acid available. The only other abundant source found in nature is in human breast milk.
When Lauric acid is present in the body it is converted in to Monolaurin-a monoglyceride, known for boosting the immune system due to its antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiviral, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. Monolaurin also specifically targets bacterial infections as well as lipid-coated viruses like herpes, measles, influenza, cytomegalovirus and hepatitis C. Which in other words means it is incredible good for you! Researchers in the Philippines have even begun studies to prove the effectiveness of Lauric acid against HIV/AIDS because of its strong antiviral properties. Without sufficient levels of monolaurin in the body all of these benefits are lost. Many people who regularly consume coconut oil experience less sickness, which could explain the drastic decrease of infections in breastfed babies. Other benefits of coconut oil includes stress relief, maintaining cholesterol levels, candida (yeast) overgrowth, proper digestion and metabolism, improved dental health, weight loss, strengthened bones, and relief from kidney problems, heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.
Tips when looking for coconut oil…
– Don’t settle for the cheap brands found next to shortening on grocery store shelves. Much of this coconut oil is hydrogenated, which negates all of its benefits. In addition, this is commercially-processed coconut oil that has been stripped of its natural properties. Be sure not to buy coconut oil that has been hydrogenated. This destroys the beneficial attributes of coconut oil and makes it high in dangerous trans-fatty acids. The best type of coconut oil is the organic extra-virgin unrefined variety, which is closest to its natural state. It will also retain its light coco-nutty aroma and taste in addition to its amazing health benefits.
Coconut water has been a popular beverage in the tropics for generations, and acts as another lifeline from this wonderful palm. Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young green coconuts (in stores, they are usually shaved white). It is a natural isotonic beverage filled with immune boosting vitamins and nutrients.
Coconut water is actually more effective in treating dehydration than plain water, and (bizarre as it sounds) has even been used as an IV fluid. During World War II Japanese and British military doctors were using IV coconut water in field hospitals to treat the wounded. After the war the successful use of IV coconut water sparked further investigation and led to publication of a number of studies involving its use, which found it to be a suitable alternative to commercial IV fluids. Not only is fresh coconut water sterile, but it also contains a very similar chemical profile to human blood plasma, making it well tolerated by the body. Research has also found it to be just as effective in oral hydration. It has been used as a treatment for dehydration-related diseases such as cholera and influenza, where dehydration in these cases can often be fatal. Coconut water contains a mixture of natural sugars, vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, amino acids and hormones essential for rehydration, as well as growth and development. In fact due to its unique chemical profile coconut water is absorbed into the intestinal wall quicker than plain water, bringing faster recovery and in many cases eliminating the need for intrusive IV rehydration therapy.