Breastfeeding is such an incredible experience and from the start it changed my whole outlook on parenthood. I got to grow that little human inside of me and now I get to continue to help her grow. Our bodies are incredible!
But there were so many things I didn’t know even though I did months and months of research while I was on bed rest. Of course there is so much information out there and sometimes you don’t know what questions to ask, but we have such easy access to answers when questions do come up.
Surprising Breastfeeding Benefits for Moms
Thankfully modern medicine is getting back on the breastfeeding wagon, but most of us more natural moms knew breastfeeding was incredible for our babies but did you know it is incredible for breastfeeding moms too.
This one is my favorite! Did you know that you can go months, even years without your period? SAY WHAT!!! Those wonderful 40 weeks of period free time was incredible and to be blessed with no period until my youngest was nearly 15 months old was even better. I was tandem nursing which helped I’m sure, but even when nursing my oldest I made it 8 months postpartum with no period! This also means you can help replenish your iron supply that took a major hit while pregnant. But also means you might be taking a pregnancy test every time you do the dead! Yep been there done that!
Boost your Health
We all know it helps our babies health, from fat and calories to antibodies and immune support. But breastfeeding is also great for moms health too. We all want to be healthier right!
Studies have shown that because breastfeeding causes a pause on our periods it lowers our exposure to certain hormones like estrogen which have been shown to increase your risk of cancer. Another way that is possible is that after lactation your breast shed a lot of tissue some of which may include damaged DNA and could have led to cancer in the future. (
Losing Baby Weight
Because of so many calories that are burned when breastfeeding many moms have an easier time losing all that baby weight. Just how many calories does it take to make breast milk? The American Pregnancy Association says you will burn between 425 and 700 calories each day! Whoa! Pair that with a healthy diet and some exercise and the benefits could be incredible. Getting back to a healthy weight will only help your health so there is more of a benefit!
But with that extra burn you need to eat more! You need that energy to not only care for your child but to have the calories to make breast milk. I’ll be honest I don’t believe there is some magical food out there that will boost your supply over night, but eating healthy fats and getting those calories and drinking plenty of water can be a great help. Also all that calorie burning will lead you hungry! I was way more hungry when breastfeeding then I have ever been in my life and healthy snacks were a game changer.
I will also note, some peoples bodies (my own included) don’t get the weight loss memo. Instead our bodies hold on to that extra fat because we just might need it to feed our baby. So don’t feel down or like you are doing something wrong if the weight doesn’t fall off. PS: I have a few friends who didn’t lose weight while breastfeeding but when they were done nursing the weight fell off!!!
The Mommy High
Breastfeeding signals your body to release Oxytocin which helps you be calm, happy, and bond with your baby. This happiness and calm can help prevent postpartum depression and anxiety. Unfortunately I have been nursing for almost 3 years and had PPD after the birth of Adella and PPA after having Delta. I have had some pretty dramatic events that set me back but I am hopeful that I won’t have to deal with either after any more babies.
Oxytocin is also the cause of those horrible uterine contractions after birth, but all those contractions are helping your body heal. This lowers your blood loss and risk of infection as your body heals faster. But damn are they painful, and they get worse with every baby.
Related Post: Why do babies Twiddle While Breastfeeding
Caring for Older Sibling While Tandem Nursing
So I lied this might be my favorite! I was so worried about how my oldest would be when the baby was born, but she jumped right in to that role as a big sister even though she was only 19 months old at the time. Then came the tandem nursing and they would hold hands and snuggle and it was the sweetest thing I had ever seen.
If Adella got crazy I just asked her if she wanted to nurse and she came and cuddled and we relaxed. You can read more about tandem nursing here.
Money, Money, Mon-ey
Oh yes I am so singing that, and may or may not have had to count on my fingers like 10 times to make sure it really was only 3 moneys! Yeah I have no shame in that! But breastfeeding saves you so much money! Have you ever looked at the cost of formula? I did once when I was pregnant and was in shock.
But the formula isn’t the only cost. Bottles are expensive and heaven forbid your baby doesn’t like the one you got and you have to shop around for one they like. Then you have to clean them and that not only takes time but money too. Sure it may not be a ton in water and soap cost but you are doing it for a year!
Of course breastfeeding moms who work use bottles too but man it all adds up.
What has been your favorite part about breastfeeding your little ones?
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