Help reassure me that babies can't get "overweight" from breastmilk! - Mothering Forums
 
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#1 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 04:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My mother-in-law is a sweet person, but she is so concerned about everyone's weight. She has been on my case about my own weight and has asked me how much of the baby weight I have lost, etc. I have learned to change the subject and let it go, because I don't care too much what she thinks of my weight. It's none of her beeswax if you know what I mean.

However, I am now really annoyed because she is concerned about my son's weight. He is 7 weeks old!! He has gained 5 pounds since birth, which I think is awesome! He was born 3 weeks early and was less than 6 pounds at birth. He is now 11 pounds all due to mama milk. He eats a lot (every two hours at least) but I don't mind because I feel like he needs it to grow. She keeps telling DH and I to be careful because we don't want to have an overweight child.

Frankly, no one else but MIL is concerned about this. Everyone thinks it is wonderful, as he is filling out and growing, for heaven's sake. She is worried about him being overweight someday. I told her that no baby gets obese from breast milk. I know her ignorance should not annoy me, but for some reason, it really grates on my nerves. My DD is 4 years old and in perfect health (no sign of obesity at all). She had the same weight increase in her first few months. I figure my son is the same way.
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#2 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 04:43 PM
 
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Firstly , and congratulations on such a wonderful weight gain. dd was early as well and she gained like a mad woman at first.

If you look at the new WHO growth charts you will see that bf babes gain lots to begin with and then level off and gain more slowly (sometimes more slowly than ff babes). If you MIL is worried just tell her that according to those charts ff babes are overfed and overweight, not bf ones.
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#3 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:06 PM
 
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A baby's weight has nothing to do with how s/he'll turn out, weight-wise, and you can't get too fat on bm. (In fact, there is evidence that demand-feeding makes for healthier attitudes toward eating in later life!) My EBF ds (7lbs13oz at birth, dropped to 7lb2oz by day 4) gained 2+ lbs in the first 2 weeks, was 12lb at his 2-month checkup, 17+ at his 4-month, and the ped thinks it's fantastic. He's now 5 months old, wearing 9-12 month clothes, and healthy as can be.

We have the same issue with my ILs, though. dh was also a big baby (ff), and at ~6months their doc told them he needed to go on a diet and to switch him to skim cow's milk . They're obsessed with weight, too (and yet terribly unhealthy in every way!. I'd try to ignore it. You're doing a GREAT job!!

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#4 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:07 PM
 
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No it is not possible for bm to make a baby overweight. My DS is 8 months and about 24lbs he is not over weight, he is a big boy.
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#5 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:14 PM
 
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haye is 8 months and 31 pounds.
he's not overweight, just long and big and healthy.

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#6 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:36 PM
 
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You're absolutely right: You can't overfeed a breastfed baby.

My DS was incredibly chubby his whole first year, and now DD is, too. DS has a very healthy attitude about eating and has gradually trimmed down as he has grown taller, older, and more active. I expect the same to happen w/ DD.

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#7 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:42 PM
 
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Your MIL annoys me and I don't even know her. Food/weight preoccupation is what causes obesity and weight problems....including anorexia and bulimia. Tell her to MHOB. It's awesome that your DS is eating and gaining well. That woman is a magazine rack (full of issues).
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#8 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:46 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovemy2ds
No it is not possible for bm to make a baby overweight.
Actually, I'm not 100% sure this is true. If breastmilk is being fed via bottle, a baby can be coerced into "finishing up the bottle" or "taking the last ounce" even if the baby is full.

It's definitely true that a baby cannot be overfed by breastFEEDING.

Ruth, single mommy to 3 quasi-adults
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#9 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 05:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla
Actually, I'm not 100% sure this is true. If breastmilk is being fed via bottle, a baby can be coerced into "finishing up the bottle" or "taking the last ounce" even if the baby is full.

It's definitely true that a baby cannot be overfed by breastFEEDING.
Ah, yes that would make sence, but strait from the boob no.
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#10 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 06:11 PM
 
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my dd was early so i know how those worries can creep in about proper weight gain, for sure.

but you are doing GREAT! keep up the feedings on cue and let that boy have as much breastmilk as he wants! and ignore that mil! good job!

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#11 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 06:42 PM
 
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It sounds like you already told her there's nothing to worry about, and yet she's still bugging you. Is she one of those people who thinks a doctor's word is gospel? If so, then tell her the pediatrician said it's impossible for a breastfed baby to become overweight, and that you're doing a great job, to continue feeding on demand, etc. Maybe that will get her off your back!

If not, then you'll have to make it clear that the topic is not open for discussion. It sucks when people won't listen to or respect you -- both my mother and father do this, so I know how it feels. I hope you're able to get through to her, one way or another! And keep up the good work!

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#12 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 08:59 PM
 
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Right on to what the other PPs said! Quick story: My DD was early and just over 5 lbs. She too gained very fast. My mom referred to her as "fat" when she saw her at two months. And for awhile continued to think she is oddly heavy for her age. DD is 17.5 lb at 6 mos. OK, we recently just dug out the baby diary my mom kept for me. Turns out that at that age, I was over 21 lb. Now I don't hear any more about DD being "fat".
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#13 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 10:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone! I know that I am right, but sometimes criticism can really get to a person anyway. I am sure it is just ignorance on her part, coming from her 1950s housewife experience (back when women were more concerned about getting their figure back than breastfeeding), but it annoys me! She didn't know what to say when she asked me what percentile my baby is in, and I said "I don't know".

Thanks again for your support!
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#14 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 11:04 PM
 
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From what I understand, BF babies are actually less prone to obesity later in life than are FF babies.

Mom to K (06.23.06) & A (09.13.09)
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#15 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 11:23 PM
 
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My Ds was a big happy breastfed baby, and I had a bunch of "concerned" family members warning me to be careful, etc. He was 21 lbs at 4 months and 26 lbs at 5 months! But, when he began to move around, his weight pretty much balanced out. I think he weighed only 24 lbs at 12 months. Like you, I was annoyed with everyone elses concern and researched it, and couldn't find anything that suggested nursing on demand would be harmful in anyway. Just remember, you're the mama and you know whats best for your little one!
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#16 of 29 Old 05-29-2006, 11:33 PM
 
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It sounds like your Mothre-In-Law has a problem with her own weight and tries to cover things up by acting concerned about everyone else. If you eat healthy food you will not become obese and breast milk is the most healthy thing for your baby. Just nod and smile when she mentions weight to you, you know what is best for your baby.
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#17 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 12:24 AM
 
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I agree with all the pp! Isn't it nice when it unanimous?

My dd has steadily gained too. She has remained in the 50th percentile for height, but went from the 70th to the 90th percentile for weight between her 4 month and 6 month checkups! I couldn't be prouder!

Once I struck up a conversation with another mom I met at the library. We had talked at length about bf. She took a look at Isa's thighs and said, "Dang, girl! You must make straight Hagen Daaz!" :

Besides, everyone loves a chubby baby!:
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#18 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 12:35 AM
 
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You're doing great! Breastfed babies gain a lot in the beginning and then start slimming down when they get mobil. My dd weighed 7lbs6oz at birth, 6lbs10oz at 4 days, 10lbs at 4 weeks, 12lbs5oz at 6 weeks, 16lbs at 3 months, 20lbs at 6months, 25lbs at 12 months and 25lbs at 15 months. Between 12 months and 15 months she grew 3 inches and now at 18 months seems to still be 25lbs, but has grown at least 1 inch (I haven't taken her back.) It's totally normal!

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#19 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 12:39 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spiritmomma
Once I struck up a conversation with another mom I met at the library. We had talked at length about bf. She took a look at Isa's thighs and said, "Dang, girl! You must make straight Hagen Daaz!" :
lol too cute

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#20 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 02:09 AM
 
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whenever someone comments about ds weight (4 1/2 months and 20 lbs) I smile and grab my breasts and say 'whipped cream!" It seriously makes anyone smile

Question...what does the whole percentile thing mean? We haven't been to the doc so I dunno the whole chart thing. Please explain 'Percentile for Dummies" style. Like what are you in the percentage of? What is supposed to be the ideal? etc.
thanx

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#21 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 02:30 AM
 
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Dawn, the centiles are a rough guide to weight in comparison to your peers: so if a child is on the fiftieth percentile, you'd expect to find 49 babies of a comparable age to be smaller, and 50 to be lighter: and so on. In general, you're looking for a baby to remain on a consistent growth pattern whilst recognising that the growth pattern for bf and ff babies are different.
Daphne's mama, your boy is exactly where he ought to be, but yes it would bug me too. Especially with having an older daughter who can hear the conversations.

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#22 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 02:35 AM
 
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"Percentile" just means, essentially, where that particular statistic is in relation to other people.

For example, 10th percentile in weight means that 90% of the population (of the same age) weighs more and 10% weighs less. 50th percentile is right smack dab in the middle so half weigh more and half weigh less.

So a baby that is 90th percentile for weight and 10th percentile for height is a short chunky monkey. A baby that is 10th percentile for weight and 90th for height is long and lean. And a baby that's 50th for both is right exactly in the middle.

They also measure the head circumferance and chart that as well.

There is no "ideal". Different kids come in different sizes. But doctors tend to use the charts to see if there may be a proble. There are legitimate problems that can be detected with them, but most of the time not.

For instance, a child who's weight drastically changes percentile could indicate a problem. For instance, a child who's 90th in weight at 3 mos then is suddenly at 10th at 6 mos, could have a problem. Not always, but it's more of a possibility than a child who is 90th all along. In other words, it's more about the fluctuations than where on the chart the child is. Not all docs see it that way, though, and some will give the parents grief if the child is always in the 90th (or even off the charts) or the 10th. Basically either extreme and the doctor assumes the mother is doing something wrong like feeding too much or not enough.

Hope that helps!

ETA Oops, Helen you beat me to it!

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#23 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 02:46 AM
 
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When I took ds 1 to his 4 month check up he weighed 17 pounds. He was 8 pounds 7 ounces at birth. The Doc looked at me "What are you feeding him???????" My answer, "Um, breastmilk" "WHAT are you eating??????" Once we got past that he told me ds1 was perfect and to keep doing what I was doing. Fast forward, ds1 is almost 8, he weighs 48 pounds. So, no IMO you can't get overweight from breastmilk!!!

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#24 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 02:57 AM
 
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Yay!!! I get it! thanks that makes sense now. Thanks for the examples, they truly helped.

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#25 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 05:09 AM
 
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I've seen some really chunky breastfed babies and some really skinny ones (like my guy is 15th percentile for weight but 95th percentile for height) I think the baby is just going to be the size that its suppose to be no matter what you feed him (DS1 was FF and he was also a slim baby)
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#26 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 07:42 AM
 
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Babies don't get eating disorders(including overeating).
My daughter is HUGE- she's 8 months old and although she was average at birth, she quickly reached being somewhere between the 95-100th percentile and has stayed in there ever since. She just started some solids within the last week. My mom is concerned about her weight and makes comments to me all the time, but I am so proud. I love her rolls and I think it is so amazing that she gets all of her nourishment from me. I love my big fat baby!
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#27 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 08:23 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daphnes_mama
My mother-in-law is a sweet person, but she is so concerned about everyone's weight. She has been on my case about my own weight and has asked me how much of the baby weight I have lost, etc. I have learned to change the subject and let it go, because I don't care too much what she thinks of my weight. It's none of her beeswax if you know what I mean.

However, I am now really annoyed because she is concerned about my son's weight. He is 7 weeks old!! He has gained 5 pounds since birth, which I think is awesome! He was born 3 weeks early and was less than 6 pounds at birth. He is now 11 pounds all due to mama milk. He eats a lot (every two hours at least) but I don't mind because I feel like he needs it to grow. She keeps telling DH and I to be careful because we don't want to have an overweight child.

Frankly, no one else but MIL is concerned about this. Everyone thinks it is wonderful, as he is filling out and growing, for heaven's sake. She is worried about him being overweight someday. I told her that no baby gets obese from breast milk. I know her ignorance should not annoy me, but for some reason, it really grates on my nerves. My DD is 4 years old and in perfect health (no sign of obesity at all). She had the same weight increase in her first few months. I figure my son is the same way.
Allow me to share my personal story to put her mind at ease. Obesity runs in my family.

I bottle fed my first (back then there was little in books saying there was any difference between breast and bottle except that breastfed had more dirty diapers..never having known anyone who breastfed and not wanted to change more diapers than necessary (if only they had said a was just a little stain, easy to clean, and smelled sweet not disgusting till solids were started at 8 months) but alas they didn't and thus I bottlefeed my oldest (something I have regretted to this day even though he is 32 now).

I nursed my youngest until age four and a little at age five when he broke his elbow and requested to nurse after I offered (bone was sticking out of skin and he immediately calmed down from screaming when I offered the breast--it was totally amazing....

My oldest is now extremely overweight (6'4' and about 350 lbs) while my youngest is of normal weight even though they ate the same when they lived here.

In my own family of six siblings, the only one who was breastfed has no weight problem, while all the rest battle weight problems of varying degrees. One brother is almost normal weight and my mom recently told me she did also nurse him a short time.

Nursing leads to less fat cells and those fat cells behave differently than those of breastfed babies. You are doing the very best thing you can for your child by breastfeeding as far as helping him maintain a good weight someday.

Mom-in-law needs to learn that this is your child and that you need to do as you see fit. She is making things worst by harping on weight as this kind of nagging leads to resentment and doesn't work anyhow.

She also is uninformed about breastfeeding...find some articles on the positive effect breastfeeding has on future weight and give them to her.

She also needs to learn that being overweight is not the worse thing in the world..if a person has strong self-esteem, they will not care if others don't accept them. Perhaps she should be gently reminded that one should not judge a book by its cover and many overweight people are kind, nice, down-to-earth decent of good charactor and compassion-- people who suffer due to America's obsession with thinness.

Your child would be well served if you would take the time when he is older to try to counteract her obsession with weight by talking to the child about loving and accepting people, not making fun of people or judging them and also work harder on his insides than outsides.

Both my kids won so many awards I can't count them, never get in trouble, received constant praise from teachers, care about others, and are decent and productive men. I don't love my overweight child any less than the average sized one and neither will you should he become overweight.

I feel your husband should support you in discussing these things with her in a tactful way and if she continues, try to ignore it. At least she's sweet..I had one from he##.
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#28 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 09:10 AM
 
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MIL sounds very obsessed and disfunctional and unhealthy about weight. I would try to stop those conversations if you possibly can.

Take the time to heal from your marriage before you move on with someone else. Make a list of all the qualities you would like in a new partner and then work on growing that way yourself. ~mandib50
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#29 of 29 Old 05-30-2006, 01:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryleeee
haye is 8 months and 31 pounds.
he's not overweight, just long and big and healthy.
Holy moly. Totally normal but holy moly
Thank the good Lord for slings.:

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