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A Weighty Issue

Delia B.
WA USA
From: NEW BEGINNINGS, Vol. 18 No. 3, May-June 2001, p. 94

My first baby weighed a hefty 8 pounds, 4 ounces at birth, but she gained weight slowly during her first couple of years. She was exclusively breastfed for the first five months, and didn't wean until she was 33 months old. When she was a nursling, she was always "thin" looking, with no baby fat rolls or pudginess to her. Now that she has weaned, she is still slender and has little extra body fat. Several people suggested I supplement her feedings with formula, and my mother-in-law said I probably did not have enough milk, and that my milk wasn't rich enough. But I ignored this advice since I knew my daughter was healthy. She's now three-and-a-half and has only been on antibiotics once. Other than the occasional cold, she's never been sick.

I now have a bouncing baby boy whose weight gain is phenomenal. Owen was born at 9 pounds 11 ounces, and has gained almost a pound a week. He's now 11 weeks old and weighs 19 pounds, a weight his sister did not attain until she was about seven months old. At this rate, he will have doubled his birth weight in three months! Now everyone is telling me, "You must have good milk, look how nice and pudgy he is." I think our US culture considers fat babies healthy and lean babies unhealthy. I am glad that I followed my instincts with my first child. If I had listened to the advice given me when my first child was not gaining weight very quickly on my milk, I would have missed a beautiful experience with her and might not have tried feeding my son with my "weak" milk. Both my babies have thrived on my milk, each in their own way.

Last updated November 13, 2006 by njb.
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