What is overfeedin?

Kiara - posted on 12/31/2010 ( 6 moms have responded )




I have a bit of a dilemma right nw n i need hlp.My daughter (muffin)was a premiee when i had her n had to stay n d hosp for a while.While being there they feed her faithfully n (what d doctors wld cll stretched her stomach.)So at 4mon she eats 7to8 ounce bottles.Now when i took her to d dctor n they askd hw much do she eat i tld them.Nw her doctor tld me that I had to reduce her feedin or cut bck on the ounces.She's only 13lbs 24in.When I tld him that she has to eat this amount n hw she cries(til she blue with a pounding headache)he said to allow it.My ? is do I continue to keep feedin her what she's use to or do I lt her cry n strip her of what she's use to?N do you think that im overfeeding her?


Renae - posted on 01/01/2011




There is such a thing as overfeeding, which can lead to what they call "artificial growth", which can cause medical problems. However, this is VERY uncommon, most people seem to have never heard of it and it is usually related to an underlying medical problem. The great majority of babies are able to regulate their food intake and know exactly how much their body's need. Especially when a baby has been routine fed by the hospital (or for any other medical reason) it is very important that the baby be allowed to re-regulate and "remember" how to control their food intake and decide how much they need.

You did not mention how prem she was so I dont know her adjusted age to see what percentile she is in. However, assuming she is within normal range, the average amount of formula she would be consuming per day based on her weight should be around 29.4 ounces (150mls per kilo per day - so I had to do some converting to figure that out! lol).

If I were you, I would offer her a feed every 4 hours. Some formula fed babies naturally eat every 4 hours rather than 3 hours - you will need to figure out what her natural pattern is and allow her to drink as much as she wants. I have also come across a couple of babies who drink a lot more than normal at once and only feed every 5 hours, but this really is uncommon. I dont know how long it was since she came out of the hospital and how long it has been since she was fed on a schedule, but it can take a few months for the baby to figure out how to re-regulate their feeding and during the time they are "relearning" it is common for them to get it a bit wrong and gain or loose weight - you just have to trust that their instincts will kick in and take over eventually. Unless of course she is grossly overweight or dangerously underweight, then you have to step in again. And BTW - the hospital staff really should have explained all this to you! :)

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By 4 months all of my kids were eating 8 oz at a time. Teresa already said exactly what I would so good luck.

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Ditto the others. You could certainly try feeding her a certain amount and then attempt to distract her, but if she cries to eat.... let her eat.


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Laura - posted on 01/01/2011




Generally babies are very good about eating what they need and no more, as the other posts indicate. Renae makes a very good point, however, about what can happen when a baby has had medical issues: They need to re-learn how to self-regulate. This sounds like what the doctor may be trying to get you (and your baby) to do. Too bad he didn't explain it well to you, it may have made more sense than just telling you to quit feeding your daughter so much. I would try Renae's suggestion and see how it goes! Good luck!

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