Are you using vitamin D and/or iron supplements? Advice, please. - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 11 Old 01-19-2011, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My ped, who is not very supportive of breastfeeding, is pushing me to supplement for vit d and iron. When I told her that my DD and I both get our vit d from our daily walks, she told me that I shouldn't be exposing her to sunlight, which I thought was absurd. As for the iron, we are vegetarian and I'm a bit of a health nut, so I know we are getting the nutrients we need. Especially iron. My ped told me that no matter what my diet is, breastmilk doesn't have enough iron after six months. That just sounds ridiculous! DD is 10 months old and her favorite foods are spinach and brussel sprouts.

Have any of you heard similar from your peds?
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#2 of 11 Old 01-19-2011, 10:06 PM
 
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My ped says that even in a state with awful cloudy winters (Utah) that my DD gets enough sunlight that we shouldn't worry about Vitamin D. I was more worried about making sure she got enough sunlight when she was a baby, but now that she eats a wide variety of foods I don't worry about specific vitamins. As for iron, I think it's ridiculous that they'd suggest you supplement when your nursling is getting food with iron in it. Even if you were still EBF, if you had enough iron, baby should be fine. There's less iron in breast milk than other sources, but it's more easily absorbed. Here's a link: http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/vitamins/iron.html


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#3 of 11 Old 01-19-2011, 10:07 PM
 
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Also, IMO you should get a new ped. 


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#4 of 11 Old 01-19-2011, 11:28 PM
 
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I still haven't figured out the vit D thing. Our ped pushes TONS (like 1000 IU for kids and 2000 for me) but our homeopath says no way. The kids like the vitamins so I give if they ask. Every time I turn around there is some new pronouncement. 


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#5 of 11 Old 01-19-2011, 11:46 PM
 
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I supplement my breastfed baby with 400 IUs vitamin D daily.  And after six months, I would probably supplement iron in some form if my child didn't eat some iron-rich complementary foods such as meat or chicken.  It's not that I think breastmilk is insufficient, but we live in Minnesota so we're not getting D from the sun for about half the year, and babies really ARE meant to get iron from food sources rather than just mother's milk around the later half of the first year.

 

 

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Originally Posted by elisheva View Post

I still haven't figured out the vit D thing. Our ped pushes TONS (like 1000 IU for kids and 2000 for me) but our homeopath says no way. The kids like the vitamins so I give if they ask. Every time I turn around there is some new pronouncement. 


I don't really think those are huge amounts to supplement, especially if you're pretty far north of the equator.  If you are more comfortable with 400 IUs daily for the kids, that might be sufficient.  I'd base it on blood test results rather than a blanket recommendation, though.
 

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#6 of 11 Old 01-20-2011, 04:57 AM
 
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My guy had late cord cutting and eats lentils and sweet potatoes, so I don't worry about iron. His family doc hasn't mentioned it yet.

 

We live in Canada so the sun is not strong enough to make vit D in the winter (Oct - April where I live) so I take supplements and now DS is eating solids I give him 400 IU a day too. He gets lots of my milk too so is getting vit d there as well. My family doc asked about vit D at the 2 month visit.  I told him I was taking enough to pass it along to DS in my milk, and I would give d-drops once he started solids, and the doc hasn't asked since :)  He reads the chart before he starts.

 

ETA: my supplement level is based on blood testing. I take 6000 IU/day

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#7 of 11 Old 01-20-2011, 08:30 AM
 
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If it is a concern for your ped and you he/she can run simple blood test that will show you child levels of both. Vitamins are only good for you if you have a lack of them, they are not harmless in excess and should not be popped as candy. At a 1 year check up my DD iron levels were tested and were at 14. My ped even commented that her levels were better than some kids who get suplements. She was breastfeed exclusively and only had little bit of solids twice a week at Gmas. No additional supplements.
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#8 of 11 Old 01-20-2011, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for weighing in, mamas! I appreciate all the input.
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#9 of 11 Old 01-20-2011, 08:20 PM
 
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Breast milk has enough vit d if mom has optimal levels I go by that when it comes to supplementing ds and I'm not giving him iron unless he is anemic I'd rather he get iron from food and breast milk
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#10 of 11 Old 01-21-2011, 07:21 AM
 
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I never supplemented with Iron as DD took to solids with gusto at 6 months and we offered foods high in iron as her first foods.  We aren't fully vegetarian, but kosher and do not eat much meat.  DD LOVES to self feed all kinds of beans, spinach, etc. 

 

We do however supplement with D.  We started when she was 9 months (summer was just ending).  We live in New England and DD's holistic health care provider is currently doing a study of her patients testing D levels in parents and children. What they are finding that the level of D mom takes and is exposed with does not mean mom's levels are high and therefore does not directly correlate with it's availability in breastmilk and baby's levels.  Something to do with how your body processes the D it receives ....  They are finding that most children in the practice have low levels- not necessary critical, but lower than it should be.  Also considerably lower than kids in southern states/countries nearer to the equator.   I am sure there is info online that you could dig up, I just don't have my finger on the resources our HCP gave us.

 

I take a vitamin with extra D and haven't had my levels checked.  I think that if you live in a colder, cloudier, northern region it is definitely worth really looking into.  If someone is living in Miami or southern california they are more likely getting a ton of direct sunlight exposure, but living in Washington, Canada, Maine you are not getting as much natural exposure and your infant isn't likely spending that much time outside with skin exposed when most of your calendar year it is long sleeved, hat wearing weather. 

 


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#11 of 11 Old 01-21-2011, 08:54 AM
 
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My midwife tested me when I was pregnant for Vitamin D and I was very low, so she recommended 3000-4000 IU per day. After I had my daughter I switched to 1000-2000 IU per day (more in the winter). I live in NW Washington and rarely see the sun. We started giving my daughter 400 IU per day at around 2 months of age and continue to do so (she's now 19 months old). At 6 months we had her tested for iron, and it was fine so we don't supplement iron. It sounds like you are getting plenty of natural vitamin D from your walks and eat a balanced diet. I agree that if you are concerned, a blood test to confirm is your best bet. Good luck! :)

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