have been reading a lot lately about breastfeeding and nursing mother’s diet because of my 4-month old son. I really wished that I had done it earlier as I just realised what I have missed out. Although my wife has been steadily taking care of her diet, me naturally being kiasu wants something more :). One of the things that I read up is on nursing mother’s diet. The purpose is two-prong. One is to know what food or supplements that she should take in to increase the nutrients in her breast milk or BF for short that can support growth, increase immune system in the baby as well as promotes faster braincell growth. The other one is to find out how she can increase her milk supply.
From what I understand, one of the most important ingredients in breastfeeding mother’s diet is the Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) which can be obtained through eating significant amounts of omega-3 and omega-6 rich food. These food essentially are the likes of cod liver oil/fish oil, flaxseed, salmon and algae based-spirulina. So what’s the hung up on EFA? Nutrition in uterus and during the very first years of life plays a big role in determining a child’s cognitive abilities and intelligence. Touching, cuddling, and a stimulating environment, and even studying music all have been shown to affect cognitive performance. Essential fats such as omega-3 and omega-6 fats are crucial to proper brain development in infants and children ? and crucial to proper brain functioning in adults. They contribute to the increased level of DHA in nursing mom’s diet. DHA is crucial to the optimal development of the brain in infancy and childhood. Breast milk boosts the brain growth because it contains lots of DHA ? provided that the mother herself eats things rich in omega-3 fatty acids. So DHA is the main reason why breastfeeding has been shown to increase a child’s intelligence. Several studies have provided consistent findings on the benefits of DHA in a baby’s diet. So where to source these wonderful Omega-3 and Omega-6? Seven Seas Cod Liver Oil which are available in most pharmacies such as Guardian or Watson. But they taste yukky.. I used to drink Haliborange Cod Live Oil but they no longer available on the shelf. I have tried it myself. So the best alternative now is through the capsules. Make sure the capsule is not bovine-based i.e. made of gelatin. Fish Oil capsules from Seven Seas and Bio Life are made from vege capsule. Whatever it is, make sure you check the labels.
Now on how to increase milk supply. It has been known that to increase milk supply, you need to increase the frequency of breastfeeding and expressing your milk. The more you breastfeed, the higher the milk supply. Don’t ever for a second worry about low supply of milk. Keep on giving it to baby no matter what. The milk will come, but make sure that you drink at least 3 litres of lukewarm water (air suam) in a day to support this process. Food known to increase supply of milk are pegaga, madu, spirulina, soya milk, sengkuang cina, jantung pisang, longan, sawi, lobak putih, carrot, brocoli, ikan tnggiri, oat, betik muda and kurma. Of course there are certain medications that can increase the milk supply such as Domperidone available over the counter at pharmacies but they are not recommended. Kindly take note too that the use of birth control pills can reduce milk supply dramatically. So those mothers who like to do family planning after your baby is born, make sure that you use condoms when having steamy time with your husband. Sometimes even though you don’t have your period as you are breastfeeding your child, accident can happen.
EXPRESSED BREAST MILK STOCK..FOR MOTHER COMMITTED TO BREASTFEEDING
(courtesy of Acar)
BREASTFEEDING MOM IN PHILLIPPINES
DOTING CELEBRITY FATHER, ADAM SANDLER
There are a couple of blogs which is a must-read for me for you to get some motivation to breastfeed your child exclusively. I suggest that you read these:
There is also a good book from amazon.com that you can check out. Sadly this book is not available locally. It’s called Mother Food by Hilary Jacobson.
10 Cities at Night Watched from the Space
A favorite activity of astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station is looking at the city lights below when the Station crosses the Earth’s dark side. The lights outline the densest population centers and coastlines, and suggest cultural patterns.
From a geographic perspective, cities at night tell different stories about a region.
Cities from different regions of the Earth are also identified by differences in their nighttime lights. Japanese cities glow a cooler blue-green than other regions of the world. Newer developments along the shore of Tokyo Bay are characterized by orange sodium vapor lamps, while the majority of the urban area has light green mercury vapor lamps.
Seoul, South Korea
This astronaut photograph illustrates the Seoul urban area at night. Major roadways and river courses (such as the Han River) are clearly outlined by street lights, while the brightest lights indicate the downtown urban core (center of image) and large industrial complexes. One such complex is located at the far left of the image and occupies an island in the Yellow Sea. Very dark regions in the image are mountains or large bodies of water. Nighttime images have been used extensively in urban climate and urban growth research to map the extent of urban (bright) versus rural (dark) regions.
This nighttime view of the British capital offers unique insight into the city’s urban density and infrastructure as highlighted by electrical lighting. Interpreting the brightest areas as the most populated, the population density drops off rapidly from the bright urban center until it reaches the vicinity of the Orbital, an encircling roadway. Beyond lie isolated bright areas marking the numerous smaller cities and towns of the region and as far southeast as Hastings on the coast. Note London’s two major airports, Heathrow and Gatwick, and the particularly bright, sinuous stretch of the Orbital to the south of the city.
Chicago, Illinois, is home to roughly three million people, but the wider metropolitan area includes nearly 10 million. By night , the region’s ten million people cannot be missed. This picture was taken on October 7, 2003, with a 50 mm lens.
US / Mexico Border
Border cities like Ciudad JuarÃ©z, Mexico, and El Paso, Texas, illustrate different city patterns side-by-side, suggesting cultural influences on the development and growth of cities and infrastructure. Ciudad JuarÃ©z, supports at least 1,300,000 people. On the U.S. side of the Rio Grande, El Paso is marked by the brightly-lit Interstate Highway I-10 that cuts across the city. Although the area of El Paso, with an estimated population of slightly more than 600,000 is roughly on the order of the area of built-up Ciudad JuarÃ©z, the density of settlement evidenced by the distribution of lights, is much less.
Jiddah and Mecca, Saudi Arabia
The rapid growth in Jiddah and Mecca in Saudi Arabia can be mapped from the lighting patterns, and the road connecting them stands out as a bright string in the surrounding dark desert.
Long Beach, California
Orange sodium vapor lights illuminate the port facilities of Long Beach, California, supporting the round-the-clock operations of one of the world’s busiest commercial cargo ports. This picture was taken on February 4, 2008, using the 400 mm lens, providing superior resolution.
From a geographic perspective, cities at night tell different stories about a region. City lights provide sharp boundaries that delineate the densest concentrations of people, a characteristic that has been used to assess the effect of urbanization on Earth’s ecosystems. The increased detail of city lights available from astronaut photography can help refine urban boundaries defined from satellite data. Transportation corridors and major commercial development, such as ports, shopping centers, and cultural iconsâ€”like the Las Vegas stripâ€”jump out of the landscape.
Sao Paulo, Brazil
This image shows the sprawling urban footprint of SÃ£o Paulo, Brazil, South America’s largest city with roughly 17 million people. The different colors (pink, white, and gray) define different types and generations of streetlights. The port of Santos, on the right side of the photograph, is also well defined by lights.
Earth is becoming an urban planet. As more and more people move to cities, and the surrounding rural and suburban areas are increasingly developed, the pattern of lights in cities around the world will change. Individual city footprints will coalesce into ever larger bright blobs. More roads will connect those cities to form an illuminated, lace-like web on the habitable parts of the continents. Nighttime photographs from astronauts on upcoming missions will document these changes, providing dramatic illustrations for the continuing story of humanity’s footprints on the Earth.