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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dr. Betty Lowe has a column in the Benton County Daily Record where she dispenses 'health information.' Today's article is about weaning...her basic comments are that the benefits of breastfeeding are only for the first 3 - 4 months and that " should be weaned and transition to a cup and solids..." shortly after 1 year of age!!!!

Here's a link to the article:

and here's her email...

[email protected] org

there's a link from that url to post your own letter, if you like...

here's my letter...

I'm shocked and amazed that Dr. Lowe is giving
breastfeeding advice that does not agree with
what the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics)
recommends. Most importantly, the AAP's
statement regarding human milk DOES NOT state
that children should be breastfed for only one
year. I am quoting from the policy statement,
Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk, from the
journal Pediatrics: "It is recommended that
breastfeeding continue for at least 12 months,
and thereafter for as long as mutually desired."
Note especially the last part of that statement in
comparison with Dr. Lowe's intimation that
nursing beyond one year is not good for babies.

Furthermore, for Dr. Lowe to say that weaning
at one year is desirable for emotional reaons is
flat out false. Can she provide references for
that advice? Of course she cannot. The World
Health Organization and UNICEF both recommend
that babies be breastfed for at least two years,
the AAP for at least one year--and none of these
respected authorities on children's health imply
that any harm will come from nursing longer.

The truth is that breastfeeding provides a "dose"
effect--the longer a baby is breastfed, the
better he or she has fared on every physical,
emotional, and cognitive test thus far given to
determine breastfeeding's effects. Three months
is better than nothing, but a year is better, and
those children who were breastfed for two years
did best of all in the cumulative research of
more than thirty years.

It is negligent and unethical for Dr. Lowe to
give such advice to parents. I sincerely hope
that others under her supervision at Children's
Hospital know better than to give such misleading
and irresponsible breastfeeding information, and
I hope her superiors are advised how blatantly
incorrect this column is.

For mothers reading this letter who need
competent advice regarding breastfeeding, I
suggest you contact your local La Leche League
leader--a fellow mother who has breastfed her own
children and who has been accredited to give
advice and support that actually IS in line with
the AAP's guidelines and with current research on

12,264 Posts
Here is my letter. the email address you supplied didn't work. I had to send mine to the editor.

Dear Editor,

This letter is for Dr Betty Lowe, in ref to an advice
column she wrote Sept 23, 2003.

Dear Dr Lowe,

You advice article from Monday, September 22, 2003,
contains some positive breastfeeding information.
Unfortunately, it also contains quite a bit of
erroneous information.

" First, breast milk is the most complete food for

Fact: Breastmilk is also a complete food for the older
baby and the toddler who is just starting to show a
limited interest in solid food.

" Another interesting point in today's climate of
increasing obesity is that breast-fed infants are less
likely to be obese. This probably has to do with the
caloric mix of breast milk and amount that the baby

Fact: the makeup of breastmilk increases the size of
fat cells without increasing the number of them as
artificial baby milk (ABM) does.

"It has been recommended by the American Academy of
Pediatrics and others that infants be fed only breast
milk for the first six months of life and that after
six months, breast feeding should be continued until
the baby is a year old, as other foods are slowly

Fact: AAP recommendation says, "or as long as mutually
desired," past one year.

"Most mothers in our current society find it
difficult to continue breast feeding for that length
of time, even if they are staying at home with the
baby rather than working."

Fact: US women do not receive enough lactation
support. They also receive breastfeeding advice from
ABM manufacturers (often through their pediatricians'
offices or the media), which undermines their
confidence in their breastmilk's benefits.

"The infant gets most of the breast milk benefits in
the first three to four months of life as he gains the
breast milk influence on immunity and develops a
pattern of eating."

Fact: Childrens' health devlops normally if fed
breastmilk. A child's immune system is not fully
developed until 5-6 years of age. An artifically fed
baby, or toddler fed cow's milk and no human milk,
will be more at risk for illness at any age, if not

"An infant can be weaned from breast feeding at any
age depending on the mother's desires and the
circumstances (the father's opinion counts too!)."

Fact: (See AAP guidelines)Can be weaned, yes. Should
be, no.

" It has been shown that regular cow's milk in the
first year of life is more prone to cause allergy."

Fact: Cow's milk based ABM is also a common allergen,
as is soy based ABM. Straight cow's milk fed to an
infant can cause failure to thrive and death.

"If breast milk is continued and solid foods are
introduced at 4 to 6 months, then at 8 or 9 months of
age, most infants will show interest in drinking from
a cup. When a baby does this, it's an ideal time to
switch from breast to cup and parents may be able to
avoid the use of a bottle, which becomes a habit in
itself that must be addressed."

Fact: Introducing a cup does not automatically make it
time to switch from breast to cup. The worldwide age
for weaning is 2 to 7 years.

"Few mothers will continue to breast feed for the
entire first year, but if you do, your baby should be
weaned and transitioned to a cup and solid food
shortly thereafter. Not only is this nutritionally
better after the first year, but it's also emotionally
healthy from a developmental standpoint."

Fact: Many mothers continue to nurse for a year or
more. It is emotionally and physically normal and
healthy for a toddler to continue to breastfeed until
she outgrows the need.

"The mother should deliberately decrease the amount of
breast feeding every day, but still offer the child
water, formula and small amounts of fruit juices,
along with a consistently increasing amount of solid

Fact: decreasing breastfeeding gradually is healthier
for the mother and baby. Decreasing breastfeedings
every day would not be gradual enough and might cause
mastitis. Fruit juice is not neccessary for toddlers.
Better choices are water and whole fruits.

"More comprehensive information on this subject may
be obtained from your physician, local library or the

Fact: More information is best received from an
International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, or
at, or

Please go to these links to obtain correct information
on the benefits of toddler nursing, and how and why to
wean. Thank you for helping mothers get their babies
off to normal (excellent) health by breastfeeding as
long as possible!


1,888 Posts
i found out this woman was the first woman president of the AAP!!!

Scary to think how *she* interprets a statement that she may have helped to craft!! (The AAP position on bf)

Did this bit in the article bother anyone else? The bold part.

An infant can be weaned from breast feeding at any age depending on the mother's desires and the circumstances (the father's opinion counts too!).


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