Babies and iron - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 9 Old 01-24-2013, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
scowgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 564
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My 6-month-old daughter was EBF until last week, when we started her on a little bit of solids. She's been getting about 2 tablespoons a day of a mixture of avocado and breastmilk, and today she is trying squash pureed with breastmilk. Next week we are going to try her on egg yolks and breastmilk, and if she does OK on those, I'm planning to start pureeing a hard-boiled egg yolk into whatever food she is eating each day, for fat and iron. I will of course continue to breastfeed her on demand.

 

Our ped wants us to put her on cereal because it's iron-fortified. I am not 100% opposed to giving her oatmeal, but to be honest the iron recommendations seem a bit confusing and sketchy to me. I'm seeing that the requirement jumps from 0.27 mg/day 0-6 months of age, to 11 mg/day at 6 months. That's more than I need per day, and I'm 15x her size! Periodic feeding of egg yolk, breastmilk, beef stock, and even beef or lamb meat, in the amounts she is going to be getting for the next couple of months, are still not going to put her anywhere near 11 mg. The ped asked my husband what we were going to feed her for iron, if not cereal, and he got confused and said beef broth--which, granted, does not have much iron, but still, she just looked up the nutrition info on it and told him that she would have to eat hundreds of cans (or whatever) to make up the amount of iron in cereal. My issue with this is that the same would have been true of actual high-iron foods like egg yolks or meat--there is basically nothing that is going to give her 11 mg of iron a day other than iron-fortified formula and cereal, and we would have to start feeding her a lot of cereal to come up to that amount. My understanding is that she is supposed to still get quite a bit of nutrition from milk for the first year. Also, she's a bit of a slow gainer, so it seems counterproductive to fill her up on solids unless they are at least as high-calorie and fatty as breast milk.

 

I have read a bunch of articles on Wholesome Baby Food, Kellymom, etc. and I guess, for myself personally, I am comfortable with what we're doing and don't have any concerns about her becoming anemic. But I need a way to explain this to my ped that doesn't involve pitting egg yolks against cereal in terms of straight milligrams of iron, for example, or it's just going to look like we are misinformed and uninterested in her nutrition. (Just saying "iron from breastmilk is more absorbable" doesn't seem adequate, because if iron in formula is 4% bioavailable and iron in bm is 50% bioavailable, per the #'s I saw on Wholesome Baby Food, there's still in theory more usable iron in formula, because they put so much in.)

 

Any ideas? My biggest issue in dealing with medical professionals is that I more or less know what I'm talking about, and have firm ideas about what I want to do, but I sound uncertain so it tends to appear that I am poorly informed. Thanks!


Jennifer (35) read.gif jog.gif , DH (36) reading.gifbikenew.gif, and baby makes three: Welcome DD Evelyn, 7/16/12! baby.gif

Missing our beloved "soul mate kitty" rainbow1284.gifflowerkitty.gif (RIP 8/19/11) but enjoying our two new kitty-girls.

scowgirl is offline  
#2 of 9 Old 01-24-2013, 02:43 PM
 
phathui5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Oregon
Posts: 17,474
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

First off, you don't have to defend your parenting and baby feeding decisions to the pediatrician. They are there for when you need medical advice. That said, here is information from Jack Newman:

 

Quote:
The easiest way to get extra iron for your baby five or six months of age is by giving him meat. Infant cereal has iron, but it is poorly absorbed and may cause the baby to be constipated. If you wish your baby to be vegetarian, it would be best to speak with an experienced pediatric nutritionist about how to get iron into the baby’s diet.

 

http://www.nbci.ca/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=49:starting-solid-foods&catid=5:information&Itemid=17


Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds   10yo dd  8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds  
phathui5 is offline  
#3 of 9 Old 01-24-2013, 02:44 PM
 
phathui5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Oregon
Posts: 17,474
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)


Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds   10yo dd  8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds  
phathui5 is offline  
#4 of 9 Old 01-24-2013, 03:03 PM
 
eabbmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 207
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My ped is not very knowledgeable about breastfeeding and I long ago discounted his food advice. I go to him for healthcare, not parenting advice. I am loyal to him because he helped me when my don was in ICU. Your breastmilk has iron that is easily digestable. Go with your instincts and research on this one mama.
eabbmom is offline  
#5 of 9 Old 01-25-2013, 07:34 AM
 
Quinalla's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Ohio, USA
Posts: 2,354
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Iron in infant cereal is so poorly absorbed, maybe that's where the high recommendation comes from? I'm not totally opposed to cereal myself either, but I certainly didn't use it for the iron. I think what you are doing sounds great, but if your ped is worried, would he test for iron? I would also politely ask if he knows about the current studies that show how poorly absorbed the iron is from infant cereals and ask if he can suggest better absorbed alternative for you.

Katie trekkie.gif - Married to Mike 06/02/01, Mom to Sydney Anne born 11/21/09 and Alice Maeryn & Oliver Thomas born 04/24/13  hug.gif 

 

 

Quinalla is offline  
#6 of 9 Old 01-25-2013, 08:01 AM
 
jgallagher66's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: State of confusion
Posts: 154
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Meat is certainly a good source of iron but it's not the only option. Vegetarian babies do fine too. I don't do the cereal either and we have had to really watch the iron levels because my babies have been early but the levels are going up by carefully offerin high iron vegetarian options. I think meat is fine if that is what you eat but wanted to offer an alternative for vegetarian families. We give ours lots of beans and offer foods high in vitamin c along with them. He especially likes black beanss and strawberries. The vitamin c increases the absorption which is especially important with non heme sources of iron. Tofu is also great. We usually serve it with broccoli which is a good source too and also contains vitamin c.

My son was tested at 9 mos. and was low. The doctor wanted to put him on supplements but I suggested a diet approach first. When they retested at a year he was normal. We didn't do the supplements or the cereal, both of which I think are hard on the digestive system.

Doctors often know little about nutrition. I would do your own research and then feed your baby what works for you and your family.
jgallagher66 is offline  
#7 of 9 Old 01-28-2013, 09:15 PM
 
tracyamber's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 3,521
Mentioned: 99 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)

once you introduce solids it means a little less iron than from being exclusively breastfeed. at 6 months they also start using their reserves of iron that you passed on to them from breastfeeding.and usually there is a drop for all babies. ...some more ,some less. i think thats how i remember. we went through hell with this issue(he was 9 months). i did not pass on a lot of iron to my baby. i was also bordering anemic .

just feed your baby iron. puree spinach mixed with apple or mixed in oatmeal. and there are iron supplements like enfamil and or flora,salus-**** floradix iron. the thing is if it gets low sometimes they(the doctors) will really scare you into the supplement they prescribe for 2 months. it's horrible especially the amount on breastfed babies and their digestive system. we ended up on supplements because my baby was(gosh it's in a post i made 13 months ago here) i think 5. there is a point when doctors don't suggest supplements. there was no suggestion from our ped. and i had started to notice him staring into space.i was so worried about cognitive issues that you can research. we did supplements and i fed him spinach,kale,chicken spinach,raisins,spinach lol . i sneaked it in everything. i also made sure to not give him calcium foods during the same time because it stunts the iron absorption.  calcium and iron do not work well together. after one month he was retested and he was 12! anyway,we did not have to do it for 2 month only one!! everything is good now and he loves all green veggies.

good luck

http://www.whattoexpect.com/toddler-nutrition/iron-and-toddlers.aspx

 

tracyamber is offline  
#8 of 9 Old 01-29-2013, 11:03 AM
 
tracyamber's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 3,521
Mentioned: 99 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
ecommended Daily Allowances (RDA) Chart for Infants & Children

NUTRIENT 0-6 mths 7-12mths 1-3 yrs 4-8 yrs
RDA Vitamins (Per Day)
vitamin A - retinol 400* µg 500* µg 300 µg 400 µg
vitamin C - ascorbic acid 40* mg 50* mg 15 mg 25 mg
vitamin D  #1 5* µg 5* µg 5* µg 5* µg
vitamin E 4* mg 5* mg 6 mg 7 mg
vitamin K 2.0* µg 2.5* µg 30* µg 55* µg
vitamin B1 - thiamin 0.2* mg 0.3* mg 0.5 mg 0.6 mg
vitamin B2 - riboflavin 0.3* mg 0.4* mg 0.5 mg 0.6 mg
vitamin B3 - niacin 2* mg 4* mg 6 mg 8 mg
vitamin B5 - pantothenic acid 1.7* mg 1.8* mg 2* mg 3* mg
vitamin B6 - pyridoxine 0.1* mg 0.3* mg 0.5 mg 0.6 mg
vitamin B12 - cyanocobalamin 0.4* µg 0.5* µg 0.9 µg 1.2 µg
biotin 5* µg 6* µg 8* µg 12* µg
choline 125* mg 150* mg 200* mg 250* mg
folate - folic acid 65* µg 80* µg 150 µg 200 µg
Recommended Daily Allowances for Minerals
calcium 210* mg 270* mg 500* mg 800* mg
chromium 0.2* µg 5.5* µg 11* µg 15* µg
copper

200* µg

220* µg

340 µg

440 µg

fluoride 0.01* mg 0.5* mg 0.7* mg 1* mg
iodine 110* µg 130* µg 90 µg 90 µg
iron 0.27* mg 11 mg 7 mg 10 mg
magnesium 30* mg 75* mg 80 mg 130 mg
manganese 0.003* mg 0.6* mg 1.2* mg 1.5* mg
molybdenum 2* µg 3* µg 17 µg 22 µg
phosphorus 100* mg 275* mg 460 mg 500 mg
selenium 15* µg 20* µg 20 µg 30 µg
zinc 2* mg 3 mg 3 mg 5 mg
potassium 0.4* g 0.7* g 3.0* g 3.8* g
sodium 0.12* g 0.37* g 1.0* g 1.2* g
chloride 0.18* g 0.57* g 1.5* g 1.9* g

yes it does double
Back to Top

tracyamber is offline  
#9 of 9 Old 01-30-2013, 09:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
scowgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 564
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Thanks for all the advice and suggestions, everyone! I am glad to have the vegetarian food suggestions too for the time prior to when we introduce meat, and I had forgotten that I intended to research Floradix. Also, I appreciate the reinforcement that I don't need to have my pediatrician's buy-in on every food choice I make for my daughter. I will try to feed her high-iron foods and ask for a hemoglobin test if I am still worried. Thanks again!


Jennifer (35) read.gif jog.gif , DH (36) reading.gifbikenew.gif, and baby makes three: Welcome DD Evelyn, 7/16/12! baby.gif

Missing our beloved "soul mate kitty" rainbow1284.gifflowerkitty.gif (RIP 8/19/11) but enjoying our two new kitty-girls.

scowgirl 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