Action Needed: Real Simple Magazine Falsely Representing Breastfeeding - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 01:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
bonbon mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: America's Northern Shore
Posts: 540
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just received the August issue of Real Simple Magazine and was horrified to read their article entitled, "What's the Worst Thing that Could Happen if You..." One of their twenty items concerns breastfeeding.

The article begins on page 136 with "Here are 20 examples of what 'they' say--ironclad conventional wisdom whose time has come and gone."

excerpt: "Don't breast-feed your child...MOST LIKELY: "in the long run, nothing," says Boris Petrikovsky, chairman of the department of obstetrics-gynecology at Nassau University Medical Center, in East Meadow New York. When you're bottle-feeding you know exactly how much food the baby is eating, and Mom may be less tired because Dad has no excuse to sleep through 3 a.m. feedings. "There is also absolutely no conclusive data on breastmilk's effects on brain development," adds Petrikovsky. WORST CASE: "The biggest downside of not breeast-feeding is that the mother misses out on some bonding," says Petrikovsky. And since breast milk is specially designed to meet the nutritional needs of infants and contains antibodies that help protect them from a variety of illnesses, babies who are breast-fed are more likely to have a stronger immune systema and be sick less that formula fed infants."

Please write a letter to the editor at www.realsimple.com, choose the option that you've bought this issue at the newsstand and use "easyfood" as the code to get in as a reader.

I wrote,

"To whom it may concern:

As an educated mother wholeheartedly supporting the simple lifestyle, I was flabberghasted by your recent reference to breastfeeding.

Your August issue featured an article listing best and worst case scenarios to not heeding what "They" say. You irresponsibly quoted an OB/GYN as authoritatively clearing up the "myth" that breastfeeding has long-term benefits over the use of artificial breastmilk.

There have been multiple studies demonstrating breastfeeding's relationship to significantly lower obesity rates, asthma and food allergies and raise IQ points. These are long-lasting, life-altering repercussions.

How could a magazine for educated women seeking simplicity not advocate simple, natural infant feeding? No special equipment or chemical preparations are necessary. Trips and outtings are simpler. Nighttime feedings are the simplest possible.

There was no myth to dispell here. No service, no entertainment provided. Please use only accepted experts in the fields for sources, i.e. World Health Organization, La Leche League International.

I am disappointed that the myth of artificial breastmilk being equal to simple natural human milk was not dispelled.

Sincerely,

Bonnie Squires"

I am too nice. Please help.
bonbon mama is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 02:07 AM
 
momileigh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oooh, that got me hot! Well, I wrote a reply (very off the cuff, not nearly as well thought out as otbonmom's) which I have pasted below, but I couldn't send it to Real Simple. The code (easyfood) was either wrong or expired according to the message I received. Oh well, maybe someone has a code that works??

Well, anyway, here's what I wrote:

I can't believe you are discouraging women from breastfeeding! On p. 136 your article basically says that the "conventional wisdom" of breastfeeding has "come and gone." What a ridiculous statement! If anything, we are finding out more and more all the time about how important breastfeeding is for the health of babies as they grow into children, teens, and adults. Please visit http://www.promom.org/101/ for 101 reasons for breastfeeding. Plus, it lowers a woman's chance of certain cancers and helps her to lose weight after pregnancy. This Dr. Petrikovsky is not even a pediatrician! He obviously knows very little about infant nutrition, and probably is just assuaging his guilt that his own children were fed 100% artificial food for the first months of their lives. You ought to consult with a respected pediatrician like Dr. Sears (Parenting magazine, author of The Baby Book etc.). I hope you're proud of yourself that you have given women reasons to deprive their babies of the best food possible, and instead feed what even the formula companies are forced to admit in every ad is inferior. I am sickened. As a bookseller at a large bookstore who works the magazine rack, I will never willingly place your magazine in a prominent display again. And you can sure bet I'll never buy it again. Excuse me, I'm going to go do something that is truly "real simple," I am going to nurse my baby.

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
momileigh is offline  
#3 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 02:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
bonbon mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: America's Northern Shore
Posts: 540
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
woo-hooo!

they need to read your reply. my only idea is to try the code in caps. the other problem may be that they didn't update their website for the new issue so the password is the old issue's. i will look for my old issue and post that code.

again, great reply.
bonbon mama is offline  
#4 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 03:20 AM
 
dentente's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In flagranté delicto, baby...
Posts: 1,243
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Haven't picked up the August issue yet. I guess they have now revealed that their research is flimsy at best. Who wants to trust them after this kind of crap? Not me. Working on my letter now.

Denny
dentente is offline  
#5 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
bonbon mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: America's Northern Shore
Posts: 540
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
try this for the code: BACKYARD

that was the code for the june/july issue
bonbon mama is offline  
#6 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 11:49 AM
 
Firemom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So what is the reason formula companies have added the new DHA oils to their formulas and have raised the price and have been promoting the hell out of them????

Isn't it because this is in breastmilk and they want it to be like breastmilk??

This doctor needs to go back to school!
Firemom is offline  
#7 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 12:07 PM
 
momileigh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
nak-- i guess since aug. issue isn't on the newsstand yet, that easyfood code will be valid when it is. As of today backyard is still it.

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
momileigh is offline  
#8 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 01:47 PM
 
captain optimism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Good Ship Lollipop
Posts: 6,852
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Quote:
In your article entitled, "What's the Worst Thing that Could Happen if You...", how were you able to find a doctor to tell you that not breastfeeding wouldn't make a difference? The American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control all advocate breastfeeding for at least a year, the first six months exclusively.

What's the worst that can happen if you don't breastfeed? According to recent studies, you have a statistically better chance of having breast cancer, ovarian cancer and osteoporosis if you don't breastfeed. Your child has a greater chance of developing juvenile diabetes, allergies, asthma and ear infections. But if you do breastfeed, it will help you and the baby relax. It makes recovering from childbirth go faster and easier. And in my experience, it makes a beautiful, healthy baby, just the right size and very smiley!

It isn't like breastfeeding is less convenient than formula: it's free! it's clean--no bottles to sterilize! just pull up your shirt and voila!

You fell down on this one. I hope you will do more research next time.

Divorced mom of one awesome boy born 2-3-2003.
captain optimism is offline  
#9 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 02:11 PM
 
momileigh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yay captain optimism! The letter I wish I had written!

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
momileigh is offline  
#10 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 02:58 PM
 
cottonwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 7,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Still trying to get their site to accept my letter.

Here's what I wrote:

In the August issue of RS, Boris Petrikovsky claims that breastfeeding is not all it's cracked up to be. He says that "When you're bottle-feeding you know exactly how much food the baby is eating" and "There is also absolutely no conclusive data on breastmilk's effects on brain development".

The first notion is based on the myth long cultivated by modern medicine that the natural system is inherently deficient -- as if evolution (or God) would have screwed up so massively that the body does not know how much milk to make for the baby. In fact, as long as the baby is allowed to nurse on cue, the body's hormonal feedback system creates exactly the right amount of milk for the baby. There is no need, assuming that the mother is not malnourished and does not have a psychological or physical aversion to breastfeeding (which might affect the amount of milk produced,) to measure the amount of breastmilk the baby gets.

Second, while the evidence for breastmilk's effect on the brain may not be conclusive, it is certainly suggestive that breastfed babies' brains develop optimally. But even if that were not true, there is a plethora of other benefits of breastfeeding for both baby and mother, including increased immune system function, hormonal bonding, and long-term health benefits for the mother including decreased chance of cancer and osteoporosis.

Further, it is outrageous that Real Simple would hold up a chairman of an OB/GYN unit as an expert on breastfeeding! But even if a certified lactation consultant said the same s/he would be wrong, because the research is unequivocal that there is nothing better for both mother and child than breastmilk.

And for what it's worth, if we're talking about simplifying life (which is the focus of Real Simple,) the most convenient and healthiest choice for nourishing an infant is breastfeeding. Those who choose to formula feed may not have to share their bodies with their babies, but they do have to deal with expensive formula, preparing it (which entails cleaning bottles and having clean water at the ready,) and listening to baby's cries when a bottle is not immediately ready. Honestly, who would want to get up in the middle of the night to prepare a bottle? So much easier to just roll over in bed and offer a breast.

It would be fantastic if Real Simple would devote an article to the simplicity inherent in breastfeeding, thereby promoting this most perfect health food and bonding between mothers and babies as nature intended.
cottonwood is offline  
#11 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 05:54 PM
 
mom2abm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: in a cement jungle dreaming of the mountains
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
OMG!!!!!!!!!!! I just received my real simple and just finished reading the article when I came home and checked the boards and here you all are already discussing this.

I think they should add: What's the worst thing that could happen if you.......read an article containing yet again another uniformed person quoting inaccurate info on breastfeeding!UGH

Most likely: YOUr blood preassure will go up, you will feel the need to swear at the person who said these idiotic things knowing that either they don't have kids, they didn't breastfeed their kids and feel guilty, and/or had 5 minutes in medical school on breastfeeding. and HOURS UPON HOURS OF FORMULA SALES REPS BRIBING WITH KICK_ BACKS AND PERKS

Worst case: For the physician would be if someone anyone would just sue the h*ll out of any DR. who would tell them it is ok NOT to breastfeed becasue they don't want to make the mother feel guilty. They certainly don't have any problem telling a new mother not to smoke, or to put her baby in a car seat and telling them all of the hazards of doing or not doing those things.
I want this Dr. to show me the studies and findings where he found his info!!!! Why are we always having to prove our point He should have to prove his!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!RIGHT??????????????

How about the two perks for bottle feeding????? you can see how much they are getting????????? HMMMMMMMMM just look at wet and poopy dipaers and you got how much breastmilk they are getting. I don't know about you all but if my baby would have to compketely wake up and be crying, becasue it would take that for my husband to get up, am i still asleep????? can I sleep during all of this????? Now if he would have ssaid the formula fed baby sleeps longer due to the fact that the formula curdles in their stomach and takes longer to digest so they are not hungry as soon so they sleep longer well now...................maybe you would have found someone who would think that is a plus!!! Not me of course i just roll over and my babies never have to cry!

on the worst case he says that the mother misses out on SOME of the bonding?????? Yeah bonding when I see the babies with the propped bottle stuck in a bucket set aside so as not to be a bother!!!!! It should have read next: babies that have been bottle fed have a weaker immune system and are more sick than the breastfed infants, they have more of a chance of obesity, less IQ points, more of a chance of childhood and adulthood cancers, they smell wierd and their spit up stains, they have more of a chance of needing orthadontia(sp?) work,.............................................

Ok I am so p*ssed about this one thank GOd I can vent here!!!!!!!!!! I could go on and on but I won't preach to the choir anymore!!!!! LOL I will be writing a letter to them when I have cooled dowwn!!! and I really liked this mag! They just ruined it for me!

Sarah
mom2abm is offline  
#12 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 10:51 PM
 
Jilian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 12,040
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It is one thing for an educated breastfeeding mom to read an article like this, but what about the millions of impressionable pregnant women out there?! Articles like this make mothers not even want to try to breastfeed! And what about all the moms out there who are struggling with breastfeeding and want to quit.....seeing an article like this will not help them out at all! And it isn't even true!! I wonder how much the formula companies paid them to print this load of BS. Even the formula companies will tell you that breastfeeding is best! Hopefull all of our letters will make them retract their false statements.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
Jilian is offline  
#13 of 155 Old 07-01-2003, 11:55 PM
 
momileigh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Want to get a look at this @$$ of a dr?

http://www.ncmc.edu/index.php?module...mid=-1&ceid=34

What should we do for him?

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
momileigh is offline  
#14 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 12:46 AM
 
captain optimism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Good Ship Lollipop
Posts: 6,852
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
The thing is, his qualifications look perfectly reasonable. I really meant it when I wrote in the letter, how did you find a doctor to say this. It's just bizarre to me, since it looks like there is such a huge weight of medical opinion in favor of breastfeeding.

The things he said are true, in a strict sense. When he says "probably nothing" bad will happen if you feed formula, that isn't false. It's just vague enough to be true! That "probably" is quite judicious. Indeed, I wonder if the reporter even quoted him out of context?

But there have been studies, even recent ones in the press, that show that adults who were breastfed have healthier blood cholesterol. Look, I found the AAP's press release.

Have you ever found ANY medical studies that show benefits from formula feeding? Over breastfeeding, I mean, not over sugar water or no food at all...

Divorced mom of one awesome boy born 2-3-2003.
captain optimism is offline  
#15 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 01:09 PM
 
PaganScribe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Texas!
Posts: 267
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Here is the bulk of my letter:

Quote:
I do not know what made you think that an OB-GYN was an expert on infant nutrition, but I must say that I am appalled by the statements he made and your decision to print them.

I am really disturbed by your decision to say the worst thing that can happen to a formula-fed baby is that mother might miss out on some bonding and baby might get sick more often. The reality is that the worst thing that can happen is that the baby could die. Studies have shown that formula-fed babies have a significantly greater risk of dying from SIDS than breastfed babies do. That is the worst thing that can happen. Is it likely? No. But it is the absolute worst that could happen, and to pretend that the link between formula-feeding and SIDS doesn’t exist is irresponsible.

Studies have shown links between formula-feeding and the following long term effects (in addition to many others): decreased intelligence, higher obesity rates, higher diabetes rates, higher allergy and asthma rates, and higher rates of some types of cancers and intestinal disorders. Those are just the risks for the baby; there are also benefits for mother is she chooses to breastfeed. And you say the worst that can happen is decreased bonding and increased illnesses? My definition of “worst” doesn’t seem to agree with yours.

I find it a little disconcerting that a magazine devoted to simple living can publish information that not only is misleading, but seems to advocate a lifestyle choice that is the antithesis of simple. There is no simpler way to feed a baby than breastfeeding, and formula has no advantages for a baby. It is insulting to your educated, intelligent, simplicity-seeking readership to pretend otherwise.

I have enjoyed reading your magazine for many months; in fact, I requested a subscription from my family when they asked what I would like for my birthday this year. I will be withdrawing that request and my readership if this kind of irresponsibility is what I can now expect from your magazine, as I will no longer be able to trust that what I read is well-researched and true.

Carrie
Mama to Nate (11/02) and due 4/12/11
PaganScribe is offline  
#16 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 02:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
bonbon mama's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: America's Northern Shore
Posts: 540
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Great letters everyone! It will not be enough for them to print a retraction. They will need to publish correct facts about the elegant simplicity of a breastfeeding lifestyle.

Oh, by the way, their letter policy is to respond to each letter--so, let's keep them busy and get them educated.

As if we needed anything else to fire us up, the article title as listed on the cover is, "20 time-wasting rules to break now" !!!!!!!!!!!
bonbon mama is offline  
#17 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 06:12 PM
 
mom3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: texas
Posts: 363
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I quit reading this magazine a few months ago when the editor wrote a letter about her "self-nurtured" child. Apparently her daughter had started telling people she was self-nurtured to make her mother feel guilty for working so much. The editor admitted to it working at first and then she decided that being self-nurtured was a GOOD thing . She went on to admit that there were many times her children missed out on things because of her career and that she should have done a better job of balancing the two. This doesn't sound to me like someone who bf so what can you expect?? I say buy it at garage sales if you like the articles, just don't give them any of your money.
mom3 is offline  
#18 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 07:08 PM
 
member234098's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Behind you.
Posts: 3,242
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just want to scream!






member234098 is offline  
#19 of 155 Old 07-02-2003, 10:54 PM
 
*Lisa*'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 522
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is just awful. I was saving the magazine to take with me on vacation... I'm glad you all pointed out the article. I wrote a letter and cancelled my subscription.
*Lisa* is offline  
#20 of 155 Old 07-03-2003, 04:17 PM
 
jeca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Dark side of the Moon
Posts: 8,544
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I can not write a letter. As angry as I am it would not turn out well written just insulting their stupidity. It's so frustrating listening to such crap time and time again when you already have to defend teh things you do to your family and friends now they(family and friends) have som misguided nut to back up their POV. Stupid, stupid.
jeca is offline  
#21 of 155 Old 07-03-2003, 04:39 PM
 
momileigh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Jeca, the more people they hear from the bigger difference we can make! If you feel you can't write your own, copy one of the ones posted here and change it up just a bit! We want to DELUGE them with letters about this!

"If you only knew how many things I want to say and don't, you'd give me some credit."
momileigh is offline  
#22 of 155 Old 07-03-2003, 06:57 PM
 
kazmir's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Santa Cruz Co., CA
Posts: 1,108
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wrote in too. I used to subscribe to this mag but let it lapse. I thought their clothing was outragously expensive that they recommend and just didn't go for some of the home stuff.... I let them know I was a former customer too!

Robin
kazmir is offline  
#23 of 155 Old 07-03-2003, 07:13 PM
 
CerridwenLorelei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: BIG SCARY TEXAS/World of Warcrack
Posts: 5,729
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My obgyn is a BIG promoter of bf and ebf and cosleeping
I think he would have something to say about this one's opinion
CerridwenLorelei is offline  
#24 of 155 Old 07-04-2003, 12:15 AM
 
captain optimism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Good Ship Lollipop
Posts: 6,852
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
I have to say, I wonder if the OB GYN is being bribed somehow, like getting money from the formula companies. It just seems so crazy that a doctor with good qualifications would say that it doesn't matter whether you nurse or not. I mean, it's a huge public health objective to get more women to nurse and nurse for longer here in the US.

It just disturbs me with all that I have read that anyone with an MD could think or say that he thinks such a thing.

Divorced mom of one awesome boy born 2-3-2003.
captain optimism is offline  
#25 of 155 Old 07-04-2003, 02:14 PM
 
CerridwenLorelei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: BIG SCARY TEXAS/World of Warcrack
Posts: 5,729
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
my cousin gave up bf because her idiot ped told her to 1) supplement during the first weeks because she would need to as she would not have enough milk to build a supply
2)told her that her dds ftt meant she could not bf and would need to switch to total formula and would not be able to nurse in the future and bf was not "really that good an alternative to formula"
UGGGGHHH
CerridwenLorelei is offline  
#26 of 155 Old 07-04-2003, 06:47 PM
 
mom2abm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: in a cement jungle dreaming of the mountains
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
To whom it may concern: (Do you all think it is to long??)

I just received the August issue and was appalled at the article What's the worst thing that could happen if you...... Don't breastfeed your child???? Where on earth did you find a Physician that in this day and age could suggest that the worst thing that could happen is NOTHING???????? I wonder exactly how much he studied lactation in medical school and how much he has kept up to date on lactation. I will provide you with a few studies that would show otherwise. But I would LOVE for Boris Petrikovsky to show me his studies suggesting the opposite of what I and many many people knew to be true. You should be ashamed of yourselves. In a magazine suggesting things in life that are real simple~ Breastfeeding has got to top the list. What could be more simple than latch the baby on and that's it!!! I am very disappointed and so are many of my friends.You would be wise to do a MAJOR article on the benefits of breastfeeding and talk with experts in the field of lactation and do your homework first. Many of us now feel like we have been betrayed and do not trust your articles anymore. Just for your information and maybe you should let Boris in on this. The US department of Health and Human services(HHS) has developed a public service announcement (PSA) for release during world breastfeeding week in 2003.. Another resource is the worlds authority on Breastfeeding www.lalecheleague.org. I have copied and pasted this next section from the Pro mom website with medical journal references. www.promom.org



Why is breastfeeding important?

An enormous and still-growing body of medical research demonstrates that breastfeeding is the optimal means of exclusively feeding babies through about six months of age and continues to provide benefits as a portion of a child's diet through at least two years of age. While the dangers of artificial feeding in industrialized countries are not of the order of magnitude that they are in developing countries (I.e., infant deaths ten times the rate of breastfed babies), there are still substantial health consequences to the choice of infant feeding method. For example, the use of formula instead breastfeeding in industrialized countries is associated with:

More cases, and more severe cases, of respiratory and gastrointestinal infections. (1)
Lower scores on tests of neurological development. (2)
Increased risk of allergies and greater intensity of problems from allergies. (3)
Increased risk of childhood lymphomas (cancer). (4)
Increased risk of breast cancer in women who were not breastfed. (5)
Increased risk of breast cancer in mothers who don't breastfeed. (6)
Increased risk of type I (juvenile, insulin-dependent) diabetes. (7)
Increased risk of adult intestinal disorders (ulcerative colitis, Crohn's). (8)
Cardiopulmonary disturbances during bottlefeeding. (9)
Formula-fed babies must fast longer prior to surgery than breastfed babies. (10)
Yet only about 22% of U.S. babies are still being breastfed at 4 months of age. The number of U.S. babies who receive breastmilk as part of their diet through one year of age, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, or through two years of age, as recommended by the World Health Organization, is tiny. Obviously, a major public health education effort is necessary in order to inform parents of the lifelong health consequences of their infant feeding decisions.

Infant feeding choices have a significant financial impact. A supply of formula adequate for one baby costs about $1,000 in the U.S., and a study performed at the Kaiser Permanente health maintenance organization in Durham, North Carolina estimated that the average additional health care costs of a formula-fed infant over those of an breastfed infant were $1,400 for the first year alone. Thus, the annual savings in expenditures on formula and additional health care bills would be on the order of $2.4 billion if 1 million additional babies were breastfed in the U.S. each year. Much of these savings would be to public funds, since governments (through the W.I.C. and Medicaid programs) are the largest purchasers of formula and providers of health services to infants.

Environmental concerns are also raised by the use of formula: the vast herd of cattle (with their methane output being a major source of greenhouse gasses) that is necessary to supply the basic materials for formula, the energy required to manufacture and ship formula, plus the waste generated by discarded formula packaging are all unnecessary for breastfed babies.

Women are also empowered by breastfeeding. It is one of the unique powers of womanhood to provide the perfect food for a baby, with only her own body. No multinational corporation, no government, no power structure of any kind can do this.

There are other, more personal, advantages to breastfeeding:

Breastfeeding is easier than formula feeding, once the initial period of adjustment is over. Breastmilk is always available, clean and pure, the right temperature and composition, and is uniquely suited to each individual baby's changing needs throughout infancy and early childhood. Night feedings are no effort, especially when the baby is sleeping in the same bed, or right next to the mother's bed.
Breastfeeding requires no equipment, unless separation between the mother and baby in the early months requires the expression and storing of milk for later use. In contrast, formula and bottles must be bought, formula must be correctly mixed with pure water and brought to a proper temperature, and bottles must be kept scrupulously clean.
Even a family with the mother working outside the home will find that expressing the mother's milk can be more convenient than using formula: because a breastfed baby will probably have less frequent and less severe illnesses than one who is fed formula, the parents can anticipate fewer days off to take care of a sick baby.
Breastfeeding, by its very nature, requires the sort of skin-to-skin contact that babies need. It is a uniquely bonding experience.
Finally, one of my favorite advantages of breastfeeding: the bowel movements of an exclusively breastfed child have a very mild, almost sweet odor, and are not at all unpleasant to clean up, whereas those of a formula-fed baby are much smellier and more unpleasant.
Return to Contents

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Medical Journal References on the Hazards of Not Breastfeeding
***
Formula fed infants get more, and get more severe, infections
Borgnolo G, et al. A case-control study of Salmonella gastrointestinal infection in Italian children. Acta Paediatr 85:804-8 (1996) [Not breastfeeding was the single most important factor associated with a 5-fold increased risk of Salmonella infection.]

Beaudry M, et al. Relation between infant feeding and infections during the first six months of life. J Pediatr 126:191-7 (1995) [Not breastfeeding substantially increased risk of respiratory and gastrointestinal infections in first six months of life.]

Aniansson, G et al. A prospective cohort study on breastfeeding and otitis media in Swedish Infants. Pediatr Infect Dis. J. 13:183-88 (1994) [Acute otitis media frequency was significantly higher in the non-breastfed children in each age group (2,6, and 10 months of age); the frequency of upper respiratory infections was also increased in those children, but reduced in the breastfed group.]

Lerman, Y. et al. Epidemiology of acute diarrheal diseases in children in a high standard of living rural settlement in Israel. Pediatr. Infect. Dis. J. 13(2):116-22 (1994) [Children less than 12 months of age had a higher incidence of acute diarrheal diseases during the months they were being formula-fed than children who were breastfed during the same period.]

Pisacane A; Graziano L; Zona G; Granata G; Dolezalova H; Cafiero M; Coppola A; Scarpellino B; Ummarino M; Mazzarella G; Breast feeding and acute lower respiratory infection. 83 Acta Paediatr 714-18 (1994) [not breastfeeding is a strong risk factor for acute lower respiratory infection (i.e., pneumonia and bronchitis) in industrialized countries]

Harabuchi, Y. et al. Human Milk secretory IgA antibody to nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae: possible protective effects against nasopharyngeal colonization. J. Pediatr. 124:193-98 (1994) [Formula lacks specific secretory IgA antibody present in breastmilk, suggests a mechanism by which formula-fed infants have higher incidence of infection.]

Howie PW, et al. Protective effect of breastfeeding against infection. BMJ 300:11-16, 1990. [The added risk of formula-feeding can account for 7% of all infants hospitalized for respiratory infections.]

Duffy LC, et al. The effects of infant feeding on rotavirus-induced gastroenteritis: a prospective study. Am J Pub Health 76:259-263 (1986). [In industrialized nations, formula-fed infants have a 3-4 fold risk of diarrheal illness. Moderate to severe rotavirus gastroenteritis is five times more common in formula-fed infants.]

Cochi SL, et al. Primary invasive Haemophilus influenza b disease: a population based assessment of risk factors. J. Pediatr. 108:887-896 (1986). [A 4-16 fold higher risk exists for H influenzae bacteremia and meningitis in North American formula-fed babies.]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Children who were formula-fed score lower on indices of neurological development than do children who were breastfed.
Wang YS, Wu SY. The effect of exclusive breastfeeding on development and incidence of infection in infants. J Hum Lact 12:27-30 (1996) [Normal fullterm infants studied during the first year after birth. Those exclusively breastfed for the first four months differed significantly from those not exclusively breastfed: at one year, the artificially-fed group showed less advanced. Personal-Social and gross motor development on the Denver Developmental Screening Test, and higher cumulative incidence of infectious diseases.]

Pollock, J.I. Long-term associations with infant feeding in a clinically advantaged population of babies. Dev. Med. Child Neurol. 36(5);429-40 (1994) [Some aspects of intellectual attainment at five and ten years of age can be demonstrated to be inferior among children who were formula-fed compared with those that were exclusively breastfed for at least three months.]

Morley R., et al. Mother's choice to provide breastmilk and developmental outcome. Arch Dis Child 63:1382-1385 (1988). [Formula-fed preterm infants had lower Bayley Mental Develpment scores at 18 months, even after adjusting for social and demographic influence.]

Morrow-Tlucak, M, et al., Breastfeeding and cognitive development in the first two years of life. Soc Sci Med 26:635-639 (1988). [Scores on the Bayley Mental Development Index were lower in formula-fed at 1-2 years of age, and scores were directly correlated with duration of breastfeeding.]

Bauer G, et al. Breastfeeding and cognitive development of three-year-old children. Psychological Reports 68:1218 (1991). [Scores on the McCarthy Scales of Children's Abilities were significantly lower at three years of age as the duration of breastfeeding decreased.]

Taylor B, et al. Breastfeeding and child development at five years. Dev Med Child Neurol 26:73-80 (1984). [Formula-fed children showed reduced performance on developmental tests at age five years.]

Lucas, A. et al. Breast milk and subsequent intelligence quotient in children born preterm. Lancet 1992;33;261-62. [Formula-fed preterm infants had lower IQ scores at age 7-8 years than preemies fed expressed breastmilk; the association held after controlling for mother's education and social class, and regardless of whether the mother attempted to express milk and failed or never attempted to express milk.]

Lucas, A., et al. A randomised multicentre study of human milk versus formula and later development in preterm infants. Arch. Dis. Child 70:F141-146 (1994)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


There is a higher incidence of allergies among formula-fed children
Saarinen UM, Kajosaari M. Breastfeeding as prophylaxis against atopic disease: prospective follow-up study until 17 years old. Lancet 1995; 346:1065-69. ["We conclude that breastfeeding is prophylactic against atopic disease, the effect extending into early adulthood. Breastfeeding for longer than 1 month without other milk supplements offers significant prophylaxis against food allergy at 3 years of age, and also against respiratory allergy at 17 years of age. Six months of breastfeeding is required to prevent eczema during the first 3 years, and possibly also to prevent substantial atopy in adolescence." The article also states that the differences by infant feeding method were so pronounced that it "suggested an influence of early milk feeding that may exceed the heredity burden."]

van den Bogaard C; van den Hoogen HJ; Huygen FJ; van Weel C; Is the breast best for children with a family history of atopy? The relation between way of feeding and early childhood morbidity. 25 Fam Med 471-45 (1993) [In families with a history of allergies, not breastfeeding was related to higher levels of childhood illness both in the first and the first three years of life. In the first year of life they had more episodes of gastroenteritis, lower respiratory tract infections, and digestive tract disorders. Over the next three years of life they had more respiratory tract infections and skin infections.]

Merrett TG, et al. Infant feeding and allergy: twelve-month prospective study of 500 babies born in allergic families. Ann Allergy 61:13-20, 1988. [Formula feeding is associated with higher incidence of wheezing, diarrhea, vomiting and prolonged colds.]

Host A., et al. A prospective study of cow's milk allergy in exclusively breastfed infants. Acta Paediatr Scand 77:663-670, 1988 [Formula given to newborns in the hospital nursery contributed to the development of subsequent cow milk allergy among infants who were exclusively breastfed thereafter.]

Israel D, et al., Protein induced allergic (PAC) colitis in infants. Pediatr. Res. 25:116A, 1989. [PAC is associated with formula-feeding and supplementation.]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Formula-fed children have a higher incidence of certain cancers
Schwartzbaum, J. et al. An exploratory study of environmental and medical factors potentially related to childhood cancer. Med & Pediat Oncology 19(2): 115-21 (1991).

Davies, M. et al. Infant feeding and childhood lymphomas [cancer]. Lancet 2:365-368 (1988). [There was as much as an 8 fold increase in risk of developing lymphomas among children artificially fed or breastfed less than six months.]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Women who were formula-fed as infants have higher rates of breast cancer
Freudenheim, J. et al. 1994 Exposure to breast milk in infancy and the risk of breast cancer. Epidemiology 5:324-331. [For both premenopausal and postmenopausal breast cancer, women who were breastfed as children, even if only for a short time, had a 25% lower risk of developing breast cancer than women who were bottle-fed as infants.]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Mothers Who Formula-Feed Increase Their Risk of Breast Cancer
Newcomb, P.A. et al. 1994 Lactation and a reduced risk of premenopausal breast cancer. The New England Journal of Medicine 330(2):81-87. ["An increasing duration of lactation was associated with a statistically significant trend toward a reduced risk of breast cancer (P<0.001). Lactation at early ages and for long durations was associated with more substantial reductions in risk. If women who do not breastfeed or who breastfeed for less than 3 months were to do so for 4 to 12 months, breast cancer among parous premenopausal women could be reduced by 11 percent, judging from current rates. If all women with children lactated for 24 months or longer, however, then the incidence might be reduced by nearly 25 percent. This reduction would be even greater among women who first lactate at an early age."]

Yoo,KY, et al. Independent protective effect of lactation against breast cancer: A case-control study in Japan. American Journal of Epidemiology, Vol 135, No.7, pp726-33, 1992

Byers T, et al. Lactation and breast cancer: evidence for a negative association in premenopausal women. American Journal of Epidemiology Vol 121, pp664-74, 1985

Siskind V, et al. Breast cancer and breastfeeding: results from and Australian case-control study. American. Journal of Epidemiology, Vol 130, pp229-36, 1989

Layde PM, et al. The independent associations of parity, age at first full term pregnancy, and duration of breastfeeding with the risk of breast cancer. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, Vol 42, pp963-73, 1989.)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Formula-feeding is a risk factor in the development of juvenile diabetes
Verge CF, et al. Environmental factors in childhood IDDM. A population-based, case-control study. Diabetes Care 17:1381-9 (1994) [Study showed an increased risk of IDDM associated with early dietary exposure to cow's milk-containing formula, short duration of exclusive breast-feeding, and high intake of cow's milk protein in the recent diet]

Virtanen SM, et al. Early introduction of dairy products associated with increased risk of IDDM in Finnish children. Diabetes 42:1786-90 (1993). [Introduction of cow's milk-based formula a significant risk factor in IDDM]

Mayer EJ, et al. Reduced risk of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus among breastfed children. Diabetes 37:1625-1632 (1988) [Formula feeding accounts for as much as 26% of insulin dependent diabetes mellitis in children.]

Borch-Johnson, K., et al., Relation between breastfeeding and incidence of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Lancet 2:1083-86 (1984) [It is postulated that insufficient breast-feeding of genetically susceptible newborn infants may lead to beta-cell infection and IDDM later in life]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Formula Feeding is a risk factor in Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
Rigas A, et al. Breast-feeding and maternal smoking in the etiology of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis in childhood. Ann Epidemiol 3:387-92 (1993) [Lack of breastfeeding was associated with higher rates of inflammatory bowel disease in children and adolescents]

Koletzko S., et al. Role of infant feeding practices in development of Crohn's disease in childhood. Br. Med. J. 298:1617-18 (1989)

Bergstrand O; Hellers G. Breast-feeding during infancy in patients who later develop Crohn's disease. Scand J Gastroenterol 18:903-6 (1983) [Lack of breastfeeding appears to be a risk factor in development of Crohn's disease]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Formula-Fed Babies Suffer From Cardiopulmonary Disturbances
Koenig JS, Davies AM, Thach BT. Coordination of breathing, sucking and swallowing during bottle feedings in human infants. J Appl Physiol 69: 1623-1629, 1990. [Infants fed by bottle are at increased risk of cardiopulmonary disturbances, including prolonged airway closure and obstructed respiratory breaths due to repeated swallowing.]

Matthew O. Breathing patterns of preterm infants during bottlefeeding: role of milk flow. J Pediatr 119:960-965, 1991. [Preterm infants have shown decreased oxygen saturation accompanied byapnea (absent airflow for >20 sec), bradycardia (heart rate <100 beats per minuite) and cyanosis (blue coloring) during bottle-feeding, due to frequent swallowing and limited breathing time with high flow nipples.]

Matthew O, Clark ML, Ponske MH. Apnea, bradycardia, and cyanosis during oral feeding in term neonates. J Pediatr 106:857, 1985. [Term infants can experience oxygen saturation below 90% when bottlefeeding. Nine of 50 healthy term infants in one study experienced bradycardia during bottlefeeding. Six of these episodes were preceded by apnea, three showed hypopnea (marked reduction in ventilation) and one had central apnea (no respiratory efforts) ]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Formula-Fed Babies Must Fast Longer Prior to Surgery
Schreiner, M.S. Preoperative and postoperative fasting in children. Ped Clinics N Amer 41(1):111-20 (1994) [Preoperative fasting time for breastfed children is shorter. Breastfeeding may continue until 3 hours before arrival time at the hospital in healthy children having elective surgery.]

Litman, R.S. et al. Gastric volume and pH in infants fed clear liquids and breast milk prior to surgery. Anesth Analg 79:482-85. (1994) [Three hours appears to be a reasonable fasting interval before surgery in breastfeeding infants.]




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------




This info was taken from the PRO mom website. If you want I could send you many many more articles like this one. Ask Boris where his are at???????????????????

Disappointed in Texas,
mom2abm is offline  
#27 of 155 Old 07-04-2003, 06:49 PM
 
mom2abm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: in a cement jungle dreaming of the mountains
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If you think I should cut out something from the last post what shoudl it be???? I know it is to long but all of it seems so important?!! I have not sent it in yet so wanted some feedback before I do!

Sarah in TX.
mom2abm is offline  
#28 of 155 Old 07-05-2003, 12:04 AM
 
Quirky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Princeton, NJ
Posts: 11,770
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Holy moly!

Go ahead and send it. Why not! They won't print it, but at least they'll realize that they and "Dr. Boris" are morons.

Come visit the NEW QuirkyBaby website -- earn QB Bucks rewards points for purchases, reviews, referrals, and more! Free US shipping on great brands of baby slings and carriers and FREE BabyLegs or babywearing mirror on orders of $100+. Take the QB Quiz for personalized advice!

Quirky is offline  
#29 of 155 Old 07-08-2003, 02:42 PM
 
*Lisa*'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 522
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is what they wrote back:

Thank you for your letter regarding the August story "What's the Worst Thing
That Could Happen If..." We have received a great number of passionate reader
letters about the breast-feeding issue. This came as no surprise to us as it
generated strong opinions among the editors as well. Ultimately, everyone on
staff agreed that breast-feeding is always better than not breast-feeding (and
in the article we clearly outline the benefits) but also recognized that not
every mother is capable of nursing for the 12 months recommended by the American
Academy of Pediatrics. There are women who are forced go back to work after 8
weeks of unpaid maternity leave and don't have private offices or convenient,
discreet stations for pumping. There are women who suffer from infections during
breastfeeding, making nursing unpleasant and painful, and ultimately interfering
with the enjoyment of their babies. This article was for the benefit of those
women, who try their hardest to do the right thing, but are defeated by
circumstance and subsequently saddled by guilt.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts with us. We take your opinions
seriously.


All the best,
The Editors


It's not at all satisfying, and it seems like there should be more we could do. Any ideas, anyone? Gotta go attend to the baby....
*Lisa* is offline  
#30 of 155 Old 07-08-2003, 02:46 PM
 
RainCityMama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: We gotta PAC Norwester here!
Posts: 263
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wrote a short and to the point letter to Real Simple letting them know how dismayed I was by there article downplaying the benefits of breastfeeding and here is the response I got back:


Thank you for your letter regarding the August story
"What's the Worst Thing That Could Happen If..." We
have received a great number of passionate reader letters
about the breast-feeding issue. This came as no
surprise to us as it generated strong opinions among the
editors as well. Ultimately, everyone on staff agreed
that breast-feeding is always better than not
breast-feeding (and in the article we clearly outline the
benefits) but also recognized that not every mother is
capable of nursing for the 12 months recommended by the
American Academy of Pediatrics. There are women who are
forced go back to work after 8 weeks of unpaid maternity
leave and don't have private offices or convenient,
discreet stations for pumping. There are women who
suffer from infections during breastfeeding, making nursing
unpleasant and painful, and ultimately interfering
with the enjoyment of their babies. This article was for
the benefit of those women, who try their hardest to
do the right thing, but are defeated by circumstance
and subsequently saddled by guilt.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts with us. We
take your opinions seriously.


All the best,
The Editors
RainCityMama is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off