Anyone EXCLUSIVELY breastfeed, (no other food at all)? How long?

Johanna - posted on 07/22/2010 ( 9 moms have responded )

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I have a 9 month old baby who is still exclusively breastfeeding. No water, juice, food of ANY kind, no purees, JUST mommy's milk. Now, she is going on 25 lbs, taking steps, saying momma and dada, and developing quicker than other children her age, so I am not in the least bit concerned about her nutrition. However, I would like to ask if anyone else is doing this for a longer time than reccommended by your average American doctor? If so, how long has anyone else EXCLUSIVELY breastfed their babies?

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Carisa - posted on 07/22/2010

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My ped told me baby food was more about teaching them how to eat and that they would continue to get most of their nutrition from the breast milk until they were about 1. You may want to give a vitamin supplement for the vitamin D.

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Kristen - posted on 07/23/2010

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I exclusively breastfed till about 10 mo and then started introducing cereal (which he hated) and a small amount of baby food. We did let him have water here and there starting around 4 months but that was no more than really a few tablespoons a day. It just seems to be easier in my opinion to breastfeed the majority of the time but once they're getting closer to 1 to start introducing foods to make the transition easier. When he was 12 mo we weaned and it took no time for him to be perfectly happy eating solid foods instead of BFing

Johanna - posted on 07/23/2010

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Thank you all for helping so far. It's nice to hear that there are others doing the same thing and see how the transition to food really naturally begins. Boy, what a fuss we made over my son's pureed food and all that! When there was no need! What a joy it is to just nurse my daughter and let worries go. Just let her start eating when she wants. No need to force food. Thanks all!

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I wish I could have exclusively breastfed, but despite working from home the lack of sleep (he didn't sleep through the night till he was 9-10 months old) and stress I stopped producing enough milk to feed him.

We ended up introducing some fruit/veggies and cereal at 6 months and he gave me up on his own at almost a year.

He wanted to eat what we were eating and what the day care kids were eating.

So I made a lot of the food we gave him. Food processors are awesome. And he was on goat's milk not cow's milk till he was 18 months old (from about 10 months old with doctor approval) because he had a reaction to both soy and cow's milk.



edit note: I went back to work at 6 weeks and was working 12-15 hour days for the first year and a half.

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I also have heard from Doctors that "food before 1 is just for fun". Seems like your little one is doing great on momma's milk! I started solids at 6 months, but my girlfriend who is a La Leche League leader breastfed her baby exclusively until he was 12 months. It didn't make him a picky eater, or cause any problems.

Anett - posted on 07/22/2010

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Btw. vitamin D is produced by the body if it's exposed to the sun. So instead of taking the kid by car to the next drugstore, it's much better to take it for a walk instead.

Anett - posted on 07/22/2010

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Well, my son was exclusively breastfed till the age of 11 months. He simply didn't seem to be interested in any food and spit it out immediately now matter what we tried. And then he suddenly started to demand food and within one week he ate the same as his then 3-year-old sister even though he still loves to have a bit of mother milk before sleeping and in the early morning.

Afterwards I just thought what a big unnecessary fuss we usually do about pureeing potatoes and vegetables. My WHO-certified doctor was certainly right: Take it easy and leave it up to the child. And it will certainly show you when it's ready for solid food.

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I breastfed for about 7 months but even then my daughter didn't take to food that well. Carisa is right thought, it's more about getting used to chewing and developing their muscles in their mouth. To stop them gagging on food. It also helps with their speech and when they are older their writing skill because holding the fork and knife gives them control over their hands.

Laurie - posted on 07/22/2010

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I made it to about 5 months with my son before I couldn't produce enough milk to meet his needs - which was about 40 ounces a day! He was a big baby though and still is - 95th percentile for height and weight. He's two and a half now. I pumped everything for him and my daughter as direct breast feeding was too painful.



My daughter started solids at 6 months but it was pretty haphazard - when I had time and usually only one solid meal per day, averaging 5 or 6 solid meals a week. She still has the occasional day where she only has milk and she is now just past ten months. She still gets on the order of 25 to 30 ounces a day. Most days she eats all kinds of things - rice crackers, french fries, strawberries, watermelon, rice krispies, cheerios, bananas are among her favourite things. She still doesn't have any teeth yet though so she is limited to what she can mash up with her gums. I puree some stuff and let her gum other stuff. It is amazing how fast she can eat things like whole strawberries and french fries.



I would caution you about waiting too long to introduce solids though as it is likely to make her a picky eater for a while. Be careful about Vitamin D deficiencies and iron deficiencies though - these are not provided by breast milk and the baby's own supply of iron runs out at about 6 months which is while some solids are recommended starting about then.

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