Robin Wrote a Breastfeeding Book!

One thing that many people don’t know about me is that I have always had a passion for writing.  Before becoming a lactation consultant, I wrote curriculum for local museums and websites and wrote two unpublished children’s books.  So when I was approached to write this breastfeeding book I knew that there was no way I could pass up this amazing opportunity.

Supporting new families through their breastfeeding journeys has truly been my calling.  I love my job and the adrenaline rush I feel when I have empowered a family and helped them to meet their breastfeeding goals.  There is so much more to breastfeeding than just latching a baby to a breast.  There are nuances, both simple and challenging, that help make this process enjoyable and seamless.  We, as lactation consultants, have the honor to facilitate this breastfeeding process, when needed, and this book is just one step in that journey.  Latch: A Handbook to Breastfeeding with Confidence at Every Stage provides families with the supportive and educational basics they need while breastfeeding their children, from pregnancy to weaning.

 

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Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing some content you will find in Latch.  This book is a great baby shower gift, for even the most seasoned-breastfeeding parent, as well as something you will want to buy even if you have already started breastfeeding.  Latch is already available for presale on Amazon at: bit.ly/LatchBook and can be in your hands as early as March 13, 2018!

Thank you for following along and I look forward to sharing more details about Latch over the next few weeks!

Iron Rich Foods for Infants and Toddlers

By Rachel Rothman, MS, RD, CLEC

Rachel is a pediatric dietitian and mom to an infant and toddler.  She is the instructor of the “Introduction to Solids”and “Effective Strategies for Toddler and Family Feeding” at the San Diego Breastfeeding Center.  Join us for the next Introduction to Solids class on February 17th at 10:00am.  More information and registration can be found here.

At your baby’s 4 or 6 month checkup, your doctor may discuss starting your baby on solid foods.  It is an exciting time – up until this point your baby has been taking in all of his nutrition from breast milk or formula, and you get to shape his palate with new flavors and textures over the next 6 months and beyond.  Your doctor may have talked to you about introducing iron rich foods early on.  This is because iron stores in your baby typically start to become depleted around 6 months of age.  I typically recommend families wait until 6 months of age to start solids (although I have heard pediatricians recommend between 4-6 months). 

It is common to hear that infant fortified cereals are a good first food.  Why?  Infant cereals are typically fortified with iron and lots of other vitamins and minerals, which is why foods like rice cereal have historically been discussed as a good first food.  BUT now we know that iron fortified cereals are not the only option, and many parents skip them altogether to start on solid foods.  Another benefit of skipping these cereals is that early exposure to more tastes and flavors has been shown to increase baby’s interest in the tastes and textures of new foods in the future.  Here are some great iron rich foods to offer right from the start:

 

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Meats: meats can be a great food to introduce early on.  Try stewing meats or using a slow cooker to allow for a softer texture.  If you are introducing pureed foods, you may need to add a bit of water with meats to allow the food to blend or try blending with other great first foods like avocado and sweet potato.  If you are using a baby led weaning approach, try soft meatballs with minced chicken or beef.   Make chili and soup with chicken, beef, turkey and lamb. 

Lentils and beans:  I love these as dips, added to a sauce or as finger foods for a bit older baby.  Beans and lentils are super easy to make.  Mash on their own or add to a sauce.  And if you take my introduction to solids class, I always bring in a sample that’s parent and baby approved, such as my green pea hummus or lentils - you can use these interchangeably as a puree for baby or a great dip for a slightly older toddler or an adult.  

Greens: spinach, chard and kale are a few food sources of iron.  Saute them with other vegetables or combine them in a puree with meats.  As your baby learns to drink out of a straw or an open cup add greens to a fruit smoothie for some added nutrition.

 

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Eggs: Eggs are a good source of iron.  An egg scramble with veggies is a great way to get in some iron, and lots of vitamins and minerals.

Grains: Often overlooked, but some grains are high in iron.  Some of my favorites include teff, amaranth, quinoa and millet.  Make cereals with these grains, use in chili or stew, or make muffins or bread.

These are only a few great sources of iron.  Although breastmilk is typically thought of as a poor iron source, the iron in breastmilk is absorbed very well by baby and is still an excellent source of iron for your growing child.

And one more tip – iron is better absorbed with a source of vitamin C.  So for better absorption of iron pair an iron rich food with something like citrus fruits, berries, broccoli, apples or tomatoes.  Also- breastmilk is an excellent source of vitamin C!

And remember that providing a balance of nutrients is important – iron is one of several important nutrients once baby starts solids. 

Want to learn more?  Join me at my upcoming Introduction to Solids class at The San Diego Breastfeeding Center on February 17th.  Click here to register and for more information.

Only a few more days to reach our fundraising goal - Will You Help?

Thank you for helping us raise $1900 during our fundraising campaign!

This month we had an enormous goal… to raise $10,000.  While we didn’t meet our ultimate goal, we are so pleased with how much we raised, as this gives us a launching off point for the beginning of the year!

 

Our Goals for 2018:

  • We hope to double the number of breastfeeding consultations for low income families from 52 to 100.

  • We hope to continue to collaborate with Project Concern International on trainings for their home health patient navigators, as well as provide home visits for their families in City Heights.

  • We hope to collaborate with additional local nonprofits who serve pregnant and newly postpartum women to provide breastfeeding education and support.

 

How you can help us reach these goals:

  • Make a last minute donation so that you get the 2017 tax write off!

  • Consider making a monthly recurring donation - A recurring donation of $7 per month will cover one consultation in 2018.... that's the minimal cost of 2 Starbucks coffees per month! 


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This will be the last email you will receive from us until 2018.  Starting in January, we plan to send quarterly emails, just to keep you updated on all of our accomplishments.  We hope you will continue to follow along with us on this incredible journey.

Thank you for your support and your donations!  You are truly the heart and soul of our Foundation!


SDBFC’s help and support are the reason I am still able to breastfeed today. Without their assistance, I would have given up. I was hit with hurdle after hurdle with breastfeeding, and they've been by my side since my daughter was 2 days old. They've spent hours helping me whether it be home visits, office visits, emails, texts, phone calls, or the support group they run- They were always there and willing to help. I am beyond grateful for their knowledge and endless support. -Amanda


SDBFC’s help and support are the reason I am still able to breastfeed today. Without their assistance, I would have given up. I was hit with hurdle after hurdle with breastfeeding, and they've been by my side since my daughter was 2 days old. They've spent hours helping me whether it be home visits, office visits, emails, texts, phone calls, or the support group they run- They were always there and willing to help. I am beyond grateful for their knowledge and endless support.

-Amanda


Please join us on these last few days of 2017 to help more local families, like Amanda's, gain access to critical breastfeeding support!

To donate to the San Diego Breastfeeding Center Foundation, please send checks to:

San Diego Breastfeeding Center Foundation (3355 4th Ave., San Diego, CA 92103)

Or 

Breastfeeding Truly Takes a Village!

A few months ago, we sent out a Call for Breastfeeding Stories.  Our desire was to flood the Internet with beautiful breastfeeding stories of triumph, overcoming challenges and struggles, and positive outcomes, regardless of the total amount of milk a mom was producing.  We are thrilled to share these stories with you, our readers, and hope that they offer support and inspiration for you, wherever you are in your breastfeeding journey. 

Thank you to all of the mothers who submitted their stories!  If after you read these memoirs you are inspired to submit your story, feel free to send it to RobinKaplan@sdbfc.com.    

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This Breastfeeding Memoir is from Natalie.

Before my son was even born, I knew I wanted to breastfeed him. I attended multiple classes on breastfeeding, stocked up on nursing pads, nipple butter, and felt as prepared as I could be prior to his arrival. After a precipitous labor/delivery, he ended up being born in front of the hospital! One benefit was that I got to hold him immediately, so we had lots of skin to skin time which was emphasized in the classes. We tried breastfeeding within one hour of his birth, and he immediately latched! We had a lactation consultant visit at the hospital, and she said everything looked great! I even scheduled my first lactation appointment at SD Breastfeeding Center when my son was 4 days old. We weren't having issues, but I quickly learned that breastfeeding my son was way different than the practice doll we used in the class! During that visit, I learned my son had lip and tongue ties. Nobody else evaluated him for these, but being tongue tied myself it didn't come as much of a surprise. Fortunately, he was transferring well and the ties did not seem to be interfering with his feeding.

Fast forward 2 weeks, and my son was not at his birth weight. He was feeding for over an hour, falling asleep, and seemed very irritable and unhappy. As a new mom, I assumed this was normal. I pushed on for another week and then decided to schedule another visit with the LC for an evaluation. There, I did a weighted feed and learned that he wasn't transferring effectively. The LC explained how he was being restricted by his lip and tongue ties, and this could potentially decrease my supply. She recommended I consider a release of his ties, so I immediately called a provider and had them addressed the next day.

I read how many mothers noticed instant results and symptom relief post release. I didn't notice immediate results, but was confident that things would improve over the next few weeks. When they didn't, I followed up with Melanie, our LC. She assessed him and noticed that he still seemed restricted, wasn't transferring adequately, and recommended we take him for body work. Due to his poor weight gain (6 oz in 2 weeks) she taught me how to use my breast pump and implement an SNS (supplemental nursing system). She also recommended a galactagogue supplement. Things weren't moving in the direction I wanted, but I was committed to do everything I could to continue breastfeeding.

At this point, I was feeling very defeated and inadequate. I felt like I was doing everything I could, and was so sad that my little baby was not growing at the rate he should. My pregnancy and delivery were so natural and without issue that I naively thought breastfeeding would follow. I called my sister in law, who happens to be a breastfeeding mother.  She immediately came over with galactagogue-rich foods and tea, and even pumped for my son while I built up my supply!

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After additional LC visits, support groups, and the implementation of bodywork, I made the decision to have a second release for my son. Even though we are still post op and performing stretches, I already am seeing results. My son is happier, and I no longer have to use the SNS system. I have a nice freezer stash of my milk, and he is thriving with weight gain. He's not even three months old, so I don't know how this journey will end. I do know, however, that I'll do everything I can to preserve our nursing relationship. Without the help of multiple providers, I'm not sure where we would be. "It takes a village" is such an appropriate phrase for this season of my life. I am so thankful to live in a community that has SO much support for breastfeeding mothers.

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Help Us Make A Difference on Giving Tuesday!

Happy #GivingTuesday!

 

Breastfeeding is not always easy!  Having personally experienced breastfeeding challenges with both of my kids, I know firsthand how critical breastfeeding support is for a mom in those first few weeks after her baby is born.  Critical, both physically and emotionally.

No mother should struggle with feeding her baby.  That is why I give. - Robin

No mother should struggle with feeding her baby.  That is why I give. - Robin

Join me in helping local low-income women gain access to critical breastfeeding support on this #GivingTuesday.

Wondering how to do this?

We are asking you to help us #SupportSDMoms by donating your weekly coffee money!  It’s that simple!  If everyone on this email list donated $10-$20 today, the amount they would spend at a coffee shop this week, we would be able to raise over $40,000 on #GivingTuesday.  

Can you help us reach this goal?

All you have to do is click on this Paypal link to donate this week’s coffee allowance and help bring affordable breastfeeding support to hundreds of local low-income moms.

After a fairly smooth pregnancy and birth, breastfeeding presented me with the greatest challenges in my journey to motherhood. Tula had a tongue tie that caused her latch to be shallow and excruciatingly painful for me. After the revision, she had trouble re-learning how to latch with the new mobility and ended up losing nearly a whole pound one week postpartum. That's when Robin and the team at the San Diego Breastfeeding Center swooped in to the rescue. Realizing our baby had been starving, we were wrought with concern and exhaustion.  Robin was kind, supportive, and professional. She came to our home and was affordable, which was such a relief! She created a plan with us and she reassured us that we could reach our goals and get our baby healthy. Five months later and we are going strong halfway towards our goal! Robin remains an essential source of support and guidance. Having access to these invaluable services, at the incredibly reasonable price point of $25, made all the difference. -Lauren

After a fairly smooth pregnancy and birth, breastfeeding presented me with the greatest challenges in my journey to motherhood. Tula had a tongue tie that caused her latch to be shallow and excruciatingly painful for me. After the revision, she had trouble re-learning how to latch with the new mobility and ended up losing nearly a whole pound one week postpartum. That's when Robin and the team at the San Diego Breastfeeding Center swooped in to the rescue.

Realizing our baby had been starving, we were wrought with concern and exhaustion.  Robin was kind, supportive, and professional. She came to our home and was affordable, which was such a relief! She created a plan with us and she reassured us that we could reach our goals and get our baby healthy.

Five months later and we are going strong halfway towards our goal! Robin remains an essential source of support and guidance. Having access to these invaluable services, at the incredibly reasonable price point of $25, made all the difference.

-Lauren

DID YOU KNOW….

  • While 93% of moms start breastfeeding exclusively at birth in San Diego, only 56% continue doing so at 3 months, largely due to a lack of access to ongoing lactation support.

  • Lack of financial resources is reported as one of the main barriers for women to receive qualified breastfeeding support to help feed their babies.

Please join us today, on Giving Tuesday, to help more local families like Lauren's gain access to critical breastfeeding support!

To donate to the San Diego Breastfeeding Center Foundation, please send checks to:

San Diego Breastfeeding Center Foundation (3355 4th Ave., San Diego, CA 92103)

Or