Drinking milk while breastfeeding

Alicia - posted on 11/23/2009 ( 25 moms have responded )

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My daughters pediatrician states that I should only have enough milk "to go in coffee or cereal", not to drink glasses of it.....



Don't I need a ton of calcium? I don't eat enough yogurt and/or cheese, but I can drink milk allllll day.



BUT, I have been told by my midwife, and by my lactation consultant, and by WIC that I should drink lots of milk - That my body needs extra calcium to keep me strong and then have extra for my baby. (I do take a calcium supplement, and my prenatals still)



our ped(iadtrician) has mentioned that it will make her belly upset and make her fussy.



What has everyone else been told about drinking milk while breastfeeding?

How much milk can you get away with?

Am I hurting myself our my daughter by not getting enough calcium?

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Keshia - posted on 11/26/2009

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I was told a lot of things when I was breastfeeding and I did it until my son was a year and three months old. What I did was write down what I ate and if their was a change in my baby I would change my diet but you will be told not to do something and then the same thing that you were told not to do someone else will tell you to do. I know it's confusing but do what you think is best to a certain extent. I drunk milk all the time when I was breastfeeding and it didn't bother my son at all. It all depends on how sensitive the baby's stomach is.

Brenda - posted on 11/24/2009

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http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/mom/in...

This is the resource I recommend going over.

If a baby has a sensitivity to dairy, this is what to look for, otherwise, there is NO reason to cut dairy:

From:http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns/foo...
If a breastfed baby is sensitive to a particular food, then he may be fussy after feedings, cry inconsolably for long periods, or sleep little and wake suddenly with obvious discomfort. There may be a family history of allergies. Other signs of a food allergy may include: rash, hives, eczema, sore bottom, dry skin; wheezing or asthma; congestion or cold-like symptoms; red, itchy eyes; ear infections; irritability, fussiness, colic; intestinal upsets, vomiting, constipation and/or diarrhea, or green stools with mucus or blood.

Lesley - posted on 11/26/2009

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I was also told to avoid drinking milk while breastfeeding. I was drinking quite a bit of it before I was told this and my daughter had a gassy stomach. Once I cut it out, she was fine.

Amy - posted on 01/03/2012

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Both my children had reflux and were colicky as infants. My first born turned out fine, no allergies, but my second baby has the worst case of food allergies his doctors have ever seen. (fatally allergic to 4 food groups, including dairy with many other lessor allergies) I also used to be a milk lover. But had to give it up for my son. But only give it up if you suspect it bothers him or if he doesn't have good bowel movements. My son had clear watery poop for the the first 3 months of his life, till we figured it was the dairy.

Brenda - posted on 09/07/2011

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My son, now 3, has severe milk protein allergy and he was completely fine when I breastfed and I drank milk like a fish drinking water. It was when we switched him to milk by hisself thatthe problems started.

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[deleted account]

You don't need milk to make milk, but if you like it and your child doesn't have an intolerance to it then there is nothing wrong w/ drinking as much as you want. You won't hurt your daughter by not getting enough calcium, but you could hurt your own bones.

Farhana - posted on 11/25/2009

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I have never had a problem with that myself. I grew up drinking tons of milk just like you. The only thing I noticed with my first child was that while pregnant and right after she was born I ate a lot of cantaloupe and honey dew melon and of course she developed an allergy to both of those and is just starting to get over it. My younger one is allergic to watermelon and cow's milk. She is twenty months and still can't drink regular milk and breaks out in a rash and gets very upset. She knows enough not to touch it if anyone gives it to her. She refuses to drink soy milk and today she told me she doesn't like rice milk either.
My husband's cousin has two children and she had to stop drinking cow's milk herself because both her children developed severe allergies to milk through her. My best friend's son has the same problem.
I would suggest that if your baby does not have GI problems showing up then you're fine drinking about one glass of milk a day. You are getting calcium from your prenatal vitamins.
If you see any change in your baby then start cutting dairy out of diet and start it after two weeks very slowly and it should give you an idea of what she's allergic to.
good luck. :)

Pamela - posted on 11/25/2009

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Dairy bothers my little girl. So does broccoli, asparagus and other 'gassy' foods. I haven't cut them out, just reduced to a 'comfortable' amount.
At a party a month back, I went way over on rich cheeses like asiago and parmesan and my poor girl had the worst diaper rash I have ever seen. It looked like a chemical burn and her flesh even bled a little.
Tomato sauce is another no-no. It causes a rough rash for her as well.
I imagine she'll become more tolerant as her digestive system matures.

[deleted account]

I agree with Brenda about this ped being a bit breastfeeding ignorant. To tell you to have only enough to go into coffee? Caffeine is a drug that does pass into breastmilk and can affect baby if she's not used to it. My firstborn was a perfect example of this. I stopped drinking all caffeinated products when I got pregnant. When my son was about 4-5 months old I decided to have a cola. Both my son and I were wired for hours!
Even when pregnant with my second son, I decided I didn't want to have the same problems as I did the first time, so I would occasionally drink a cola (not a coffee drinker). When he was a few months old, I increased my cola intake to having one a bit more regularly, and occasionally having more than one a day. The poor boy was feeling it, so I had to cut it out again.

Listen to your lactation consultant and the others. They know what they're talking about.

Good luck!

Francesca - posted on 11/24/2009

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Wow, I hate milk and never even bought it before I became pregnant and started breastfeeding. Now I make sure I get at least 3 glasses a day. I want to make sure I am eating and drinking all the right things for my little girl.



Maybe your doctor was offering suggestions of foods that make your baby gasy. I know I can't eat any cabbage (not too heart broken over it) and tea...It makes my Ella very fusy if I do.



My doctor, my doula and the lacation consultant I have met with never said anything about not drinking milk while breastfeeding.



Did you know you would need to eat 3lbs of brocolli to get your calcium requirements for the day. And thats for a normal person who isn't breastfeeding. And I am pretty sure no one will want to be around you or a gasy baby if you actually ate all that brocolli. And as great as supplements are, they still don't beat getting them from the real thing. Besides, while we breastfeed we need the extra calories. So why not indulge in a tall glass of milk and some oreos.

Alicia - posted on 11/24/2009

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I did avoid drinking milk while breastfeeding, but I didn't really see any difference, I avoided for around a week. Then, yesterday and today I have drank milk, like I wanted and enjoyed it... and she still doesn't seem to have any difference. I don't see any reason for our ped to base the "low milk intake". My daughter isn't ill or anything, I think I will continue drinking milk and get my calcium intake as high as I can. Unless I do see a problem like any change in stools or any other problems that may be a symptom of a sensitivity.



Thank you everyone!!!!!!! Much appreciated :)

[deleted account]

My baby has a milk protein allergy. If I avoid ALL dairy (butter, and chocolate even!I have to read labels very carefully) she does not get blood streaked mucousy stool. If I have even the small amounts like in say frosting or chocolate she gets blood streaked mucous stool. I think you should try going dairy free too see if it helped your baby. My baby had a milk protein allergy that caused her fussiness though. Since I now avoid dairy she is just the happiest baby though!!

Annya - posted on 11/24/2009

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i've been told that there's no reason to limit your intake of milk/dairy products unless your baby has acid reflux or if you notice that your baby is extremely fussy/gassy after lots of dairy - it depends on the baby.
you need as much calcium as you can get - especially with all the antibodies that your body is delivering to your baby's bones instead of yours.
i've actually had huge cravings for milk since my son's been born, so i've been drinking as much as i can - lol!
my son doesn't seem to mind it at all - but like i said, it depends on your little one.

Sammi - posted on 11/24/2009

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it is up to you how much milk you drink as it is very good for you and it will not do any harm to you or your baby through breast feeding, as you do need alot of calcium yourself.

Alicia - posted on 11/24/2009

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thank you everyone! I appreciate all of this feedback :) And it's pretty much what I thought. Other than the ped telling us this - he's amazing. I'm willing to let it slide and just go with my gut. Mommy does know best, right? I don't think it's right to not have milk in my diet, I love it too much, and he's the only person that has said such a thing. WIC looked at me like I was crazy when I mentioned not being able to drink much milk! So I will continue to drink milk and just keep a close eye on my daughter. I don't want to see my bones or teeth get the worst end of the deal all because I was afraid to hurt her. I realize my body will go without before hers will.

Thanks again for all of our replies!

Katie - posted on 11/24/2009

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My son does have a sensitivity to milk protein and gets painful gas whenever I eat cheese or drink milk. It's very common in breastfed babies, but not EVERY breastfed baby has this problem. If it doesn't bother your baby to drink milk then I say drink as much as you want! I crave milk and cheese and can't wait to be able to have it again!

Tara - posted on 11/23/2009

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Quoting Alicia:

The only "reaction" she may have is either milk or caffeine. I can't seem to figure out which one bothers her, if either do. Somedays, I've had both and she's fine, other days, she's being a crab, and I wonder if I've had too much of one or the other. (I do keep in mind, that even though she is 9weeks old.. she is human and WILL have bad days regardless of what I have eaten or not eaten) Another thing is her bowel movements... sometimes she seems to have "mucousy" stool and he thinks too much milk may cause this. But she did it today and I didn't have much milk at all today. I'm guessing her BM's are normal, it's been like that since she was born so I don't see a problem.



My daughter went through the same thing, and my doctor suggested I cut out dairy just to see if it helped, that if it did she could have an allergy or sensitivity to cow's milk protein.  I cut it out for 6 weeks and it didn't make a difference.  As for her bowel movements, my daughter got mucousy stools if I ate spicy food (and would cry a lot).  I learned early that I had to forego my favourite hot wings!  Just a thought, although every baby is different, and from my experience spending the first 4 months of her life trying to figure out what in my diet was causing her to cry a lot, I finally figured out that, with the exception of the spicy food (and asparagus, oddly enough), it really didn't have much to do with what I ate.  She was just a colicky baby, and it eventually passed and she has a great temperament now!  Good luck, I remember how frustrated I was with that!

Brenda - posted on 11/23/2009

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It is total BS that you can't drink milk. What you eat, in most cases, DOES NOT affect the baby. There are a FEW and I mean very few babies that have allergies to milk proteins, but even then, those are over diagnosed. I have never heard a ped try to tell someone not to drink milk. Ludacris.



If I have learned one thing about breastfeeding it is that most pediatricians are idiots whent it comes to it. You body produces milk to YOUR disadvantage. If you do not take in enough vitamins and minarels, you will suffer, because the body places priority on milk production. Even low calorie intake does not reduce milk production (unless to the level of starvation). Do not listen to your ped. He (or she) is breastfeeding stupid, unfortunately I can't say you should find another, because the vast majority of doctors are breastfeeding stupid. Read up on kellymom.com, call la leche league, trust the WIC office and the lactation consultants, NOT the pediatrician (who's pockets are padded by the formula companies).

Kathryn - posted on 11/23/2009

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Oh wow, I never heard this!! They gave me milk in the hospital, so I assumed it was fine and drink milk all the time... My baby is fine...

Alicia - posted on 11/23/2009

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She's not lactose intolerant at all. He just has made mention that it can cause her to be fussy and uncomfortable with an upset tummy. My whole life, I have loved milk, I would rather drink a nice big glass of cold milk than have any other snack! (for that reason, I drink skim milk)

Beth- good to know about the allergy thing, he hasn't mentioned that, but I wrote it down to ask him on her next visit. I do eat spinach, it's high in iron as well, and being anemic, I work on getting iron also ( don't care for red meat).

The only "reaction" she may have is either milk or caffeine. I can't seem to figure out which one bothers her, if either do. Somedays, I've had both and she's fine, other days, she's being a crab, and I wonder if I've had too much of one or the other. (I do keep in mind, that even though she is 9weeks old.. she is human and WILL have bad days regardless of what I have eaten or not eaten) Another thing is her bowel movements... sometimes she seems to have "mucousy" stool and he thinks too much milk may cause this. But she did it today and I didn't have much milk at all today. I'm guessing her BM's are normal, it's been like that since she was born so I don't see a problem.

[deleted account]

My OB said to continue my prenatals and calcium supplement, but I haven't talked to the pediatrician about it. What prompted the pediatrician to tell you this? Has there been issues with possible allergic reactions with your daughter? My husband's cousin had to cut out all dairy when she was nursing her youngest because he was getting rashes, and I've heard of other women having to cut out certain foods because of it causing reactions in their children, so that's a possibility.

Beth - posted on 11/23/2009

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My pediatrician told me a glass a day...too much and the baby could develop an allergy to milk later. I don't know if there's truth to that, but you can get calcium in other things besides milk. Leafy greens like Kale, spinich, and chard....LOTS of calcium in those!!! If you don't like to eat your greens, you can look it up and see what else contains calcium besides milk. :)

Sammy - posted on 11/23/2009

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I have not been told to drink less milk! I have hurd that it can effect babies that are lactose intollarant or something like that. I drink alot of milk and my daughter is fine with it! I think it just depends on each baby!

Francesca - posted on 11/24/2009

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Wow, I hate milk and never even bought it before I became pregnant and started breastfeeding. Now I make sure I get at least 3 glasses a day. I want to make sure I am eating and drinking all the right things for my little girl.



Maybe your doctor was offering suggestions of foods that make your baby gasy. I know I can't eat any cabbage (not too heart broken over it) and tea...It makes my Ella very fusy if I do.



My doctor, my doula and the lacation consultant I have met with never said anything about not drinking milk while breastfeeding.



Did you know you would need to eat 3lbs of brocolli to get your calcium requirements for the day. And thats for a normal person who isn't breastfeeding. And I am pretty sure no one will want to be around you or a gasy baby if you actually ate all that brocolli. And as great as supplements are, they still don't beat getting them from the real thing. Besides, while we breastfeed we need the extra calories. So why not indulge in a tall glass of milk and some oreos.

Alicia - posted on 11/24/2009

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I did avoid drinking milk while breastfeeding, but I didn't really see any difference, I avoided for around a week. Then, yesterday and today I have drank milk, like I wanted and enjoyed it... and she still doesn't seem to have any difference. I don't see any reason for our ped to base the "low milk intake". My daughter isn't ill or anything, I think I will continue drinking milk and get my calcium intake as high as I can. Unless I do see a problem like any change in stools or any other problems that may be a symptom of a sensitivity.



Thank you everyone!!!!!!! Much appreciated :)

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