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Changing the WIC program to increase BF rates - Page 2

post #21 of 34
my husband wanted us to go on wic when I got pregnant. but I went it right around the time I got a job so we just barely didnt qualify. but I was kinda putting it off anyway because I dont eat:
cow milk (I have a very mild intolerecne, we have soy milk useually)
lots of cheese (my husband does, but I still think a lot would go bad)
peanut butter (I dont like it)
dried beans (my husband might be willing to cook the beans, but I know we wouldnt eat that many)
dozen eggs (my husband eats them once every other month or so)
tuna (meat is not allowed in my house, especilly fish)

I would eat:
carrots (although prolly not as much as they give)
cereal
frozen juices (although I much prefer fresh 100%)
some cheese

seems pointless..........


My sister gave up bfing because she didnt have the help she needs. shes on wic. I think it would be nice for wic to have good LCs avalible to all moms for at least 6-12 months after the birth. and prefrably at least one counceling session while they are pregnant (wheather they plan to bf or not).

get a tml thing on promom. and keep us informed on who to contact and what issuses to specifically adress (so we can keep together and not scatter too much on this)
post #22 of 34
I've been on WIC for a year and I'm going to go off it after I get my farmer's market checks. It's just not worth the hassle of going. The only things that get used are the carrots (we can get organic), some of the juice (which goes a long way cuz I dilute it so much), the cereal, and the peanut butter (we can get natural). The stuff they give you is ridiculous. All that milk is unhealthy. The eggs are bad for you. Why can't you get organic milk and eggs??? Juice is full of sugar (and they gave DS 2 cans a month when he was 6 mos old!) and contributes to childhood obesity. Cheese is bad for you. Most of the cereal options are CRAP (frosted mini wheats? kix? banana nut crunch? wth?) Tuna is loaded with mercury. A lot of stores don't carry natural PB in the size you're required to get, so you're stuck with the sugary stuff that has hydrogenated oils. And this is supposed to be a NUTRITION program.
The workers at my WIC office are total formula pushers. They always offer to add it to my checks. BFing women have to pick up checks every month instead of every three months "in case" they stop nursing. At my last appointment I had to explain to the worker what CLW is (and then she asked me, "Well, do you think he'll wean himself in the next couple of months?" Hello, he was 8 months old then!)
AND THEY WONDER WHY SO FEW WOMEN ON WIC BREASTFEED!!!
post #23 of 34
I have noticed (being on WIC with my first 3 kids) that they tend to ask the same questions over and over again...something to do with the nutritional requirements. If you read the enrollment requirements, one is financial and one is nutritional. That is why they continually do the hemoglobin stick : (which my dr says is NOT accurate) and they make you write down what you and the kids have eaten for the last 24 hours : They have to nit pik everything to make you "eligible" for the silly nutritional requirements. Once, i told my WIC nurse that i would be a whale if i ate everythign they say i need to eat...she just sighed at me and told me i wouldnt :

I think one of the things that irked me the most was when i HAD to start working with DS#2 and they wouldnt allow me to put part time bf-ing / part time formula...it had to be one or the other...put me into a pickle...because at the time i couldnt afford the formula easily but i couldnt bf full time and i WAS NOT offered a breastpump or even a way to rent an electric one at a reduced price. I was therefore forced to do all my feedings by formula, b/c they wouldnt accept the bf-ing at night and in the morning like i had wanted to do :

Im sure there would ahve been away to fudge a bit on my forms, but i was quite niave to the whole process at the time
post #24 of 34
The Special Supplemental Nurtition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) is a federal program run by the USDA. The Food, Nurtition and Consumer Services agency is part of the USDA. The FNCS has direct control over WIC. Your timing could not have been better as far as having input over the content of WIC food packages.

The Institute of Medicine has published a report entitled "WIC Food Packages, Time for a Change". You can read the report via the National Academies Press webiste for free. The IOM's proposed changes to the WIC food packages are due to be made public any day now. You can call the FNCS at (703) 305-2746 to get more information about when the new food packages will be announced.

If you really want to have influence regarding the WIC food packages you need to contact members of Congress. They write the rules and regulations WIC must follow.

In the U.S. House of Representatives the specific subcommittee with jurisdiction over WIC is the Subcommittee on Education Reform (I know the name of the subcommittee doesn't seem to fit with the WIC program, but that's what the name is). You can see a list of the members of that subcommittee at: edworkforce.house.gov/members/109th/mem-edr.htm

In the U.S. Senate the subcommittee with jurisdiction over the WIC program is the Subcommittee on Research, Nutrition, and General Legislation. You can easily find a list of members of that subcommittee by doing a search of the name of the subcommittee.
post #25 of 34
shoefairy.... they actually told you that you had to stop breastfeeding to get formula?!?!?!?! I must be misreading that.
I guess here in NH and MA they are not as bad as other places. I was never offered formula and WIC here in NH offers hand pumps to anyone and electric to mothers who need them. I also don't have to go every month becuase I am breastfeeding that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Why can't you just call if you wean?
post #26 of 34
Quote:
I also don't have to go every month becuase I am breastfeeding that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard
I must have missed that earlier! I go every three months. If I had to go every month, I'd quit, that's not worth the hassle!
post #27 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by devoted2kids
The Institute of Medicine has published a report entitled "WIC Food Packages, Time for a Change". You can read the report via the National Academies Press webiste for free. The IOM's proposed changes to the WIC food packages are due to be made public any day now. You can call the FNCS at (703) 305-2746 to get more information about when the new food packages will be announced.
Wow, that helped a lot! I'll try to read the whole thing when I have time. I found the link for those interested in reading it. I skimmed through chapter 6 which talks about the changes that need to be made to the WIC program. http://www.nap.edu/catalog/11078.html
post #28 of 34
I met one of the people who helped WIC on it's breastfeeding policies...

The reason for the huge amount of dairy: Women have a huge potential to add 5% bone mass while breastfeeding. Regular levels of blood calcium help maximize that. Also they asume that you have a husband and possibly older children who are useing some of this milk.

I get the 10 gallons a month and use all of it. I get creative. I use a lot in recipies.
post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apwannabe
shoefairy.... they actually told you that you had to stop breastfeeding to get formula?!?!?!?! I must be misreading that.
I guess here in NH and MA they are not as bad as other places. I was never offered formula and WIC here in NH offers hand pumps to anyone and electric to mothers who need them. I also don't have to go every month becuase I am breastfeeding that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Why can't you just call if you wean?
u read me right but i have gotten smarter and sneakier since then
post #30 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by panthera28
nak
Having been on WIC I have always been baffled by the heavy dairy diet they push.
That's because you are under the misconception that the program is 'about' helping mothers & children, when the USDA has one big goal & that is PUSH MILK (and hybrid gmo corn, and soy... between that, the hfcs & the soy, you can see where the formula bias comes in, eh? And no soy *milk*; what does the organic, non-gmo soybean have to do with what is going on with the American farm industry?).

Not that individuals working for WIC don't necessarily have more altruistic goals, but as a USDA program they serve a 'Higher Purpose' . The fact that the dairy industry has a guaranteed consumer is not a happy byproduct, but the cause itself.

The USDA has little desire to promote bfing. That they do anything with pumps or for bfing moms at all (not that mine ever did squat, but it was awhile ago) is just lip service, throwing the WIC dept a bone.

Good luck rocking THAT boat .
post #31 of 34
Quote:
So why not make a contract with Dole for canned fruits, or with Birdseye for frozen vegetables? They're still premeasured (something that WIC really likes) and national companies so they could easily get rebate contracts for those items. Plus it would make the BF diet more attractive and easier for elimination dieters to afford groceries.
I think this is a brilliant idea. When a friend of mine was on WIC she was at a loss as to what to do with all that peanut butter, and yet no fruit and veg!
post #32 of 34
I am a WIC breastfeeding counselor and WIC participant, or at least my 4 year old daughter is for a little while longer. Please do write in about the new food package proposals, they look excellent!
post #33 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaFranklin

I get the 10 gallons a month and use all of it. I get creative. I use a lot in recipies.
We do to... we make our own yogurt, ice cream, and cheese, as well as do a bunch of baking. We also freeze a lot of the cheese. And in a pinch, we give it away to friends who will drink the stuff.
post #34 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by TigerTail
That's because you are under the misconception that the program is 'about' helping mothers & children, when the USDA has one big goal & that is PUSH MILK
Actually, I have no misconceptions about the USDA at all... I am just saddened by it all. Programs like these could do a lot of good, but they are often hampered by bureauocrats who don't care, and people out to make more money. I am actually fairly skeptical about any positive changes being made in WIC anytime soon, but I can always hope and throw my two cents in to the people who DO make those policies in the hopes for change.
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