I read someone's blog about breastfeeding and how that was helping her lose weight. It's been awhile since I did that, but I remember that it happened for me too. Breastfeeding naturally contracts the uterus, and while you have to watch what you eat, it consumes calories and I was back in shape sooner than I imagined. I wrote the blog below and posted it on my blog at "Our Salon" a few days ago. You might find it interesting, funny, and perhaps a little gross:
Breastfeeding, Puppies, & a Conspiracy Theory
I felt like a rebel when I decided to breastfeed. I liked that. My mother was astounded that I could do it. Other women were too, which made no sense. We wouldn't have been able to survive without women doing this for centuries. It was, after all, what makes us mammals. I remember the snickers in science class when a girl asked how humans feed their young. She seriously had no clue.
When I got pregnant I decided to breastfeed because I was a mime and my husband was a social worker and we were broke. The more pregnant I got, the less mime I could do. Formula cost money and I didn't want to fix a bottle in the middle of the night or the middle of a good nap. I read every baby book in the neighborhood library and discovered more benefits. Breastfeeding contracts the uterus (felt that at every feeding) and the nutrition components of the milk changed based on the baby's developmental needs. This included fat levels, so theoretically, the baby would be less inclined to have an obesity problem. Switching from side to side was good for the babies eyes and brain. The more challenging sucking strengthened the jaw, and it was natural birth control-no periods. I wouldn't have to buy tampons or rubbers for a year.
I decided baby formula was another example of a capitalist conspiracy to make money at the expense of what is right and good for humanity. Family and friends laughed when I said it, and either I was mellowed, by motherhood, or brainwashed by baby commericals, but I didn't take my accusation seriously either.
Recently I bought a book about quirky things we don't know (like why fish fart) and I think I found the beginning of the conspiracy. It is something even my oddly twisted mind could not have imagined.
In the mid 1800's Dr. William P. Dewees, the first American pediatric author, advised women in their eighth month of pregnancy to find a young, sufficiently strong puppy and nurse it. This would toughen the nipples, improve secretion and prevent inflammation. Let that sink in. Puppies. Little sharp teethed puppies.
Dr. Dewees further recommended if puppies weren't available, the mother-to-be was to look for a little suckling pig.
A few short years later, the Nestle Company was launched with the first baby formula offered in the U.S. Initially it was expensive and used only for unusual circumstances. In the 1920's and 30's, production costs were lowered by using evaporated milk, and formula consumption increased. By 1970 only one quarter of American women were breastfeeding.
I'm glad by the time I was cramming for motherhood, Dr. Dewees recommendation for breast preparation was replaced by nipple massage with lanolin. My rebellious nature has its limits.