Is okay to top-off with formula after I breastfeed?

See Wendy Haldeman, RN, MN, IBCLC's video on Is okay to top-off with formula after I breastfeed?...
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Is okay to top-off with formula after I breastfeed?

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Tired mothers will often come to me on confidence and say I have been told that if I top my baby off with formula, particularly that last feed at night, my baby will sleep longer. First of all, your baby may sleep longer so that makes it really enticing. I understand. But I want to give you informed consent if you will. What you need to understand when you combine formula with human milk, you are diminishing the benefits of human milk because the gut is different. When you give formula to a baby, their pH changes from an acid to a basic content. And the harmful bacteria thrive and grow in a basic environment. So we want to keep the gut acid if we can. And the second concern is a baby´s gut until they are about six months old, the gut wall is what we call open. There are tiny little openings between the cell walls, which allow harmful pathogens and allergens to cross over into the bloodstream. If you want the full benefit of human milk and all the wonderful things that it provides a baby, you want to keep their gut pure if you will. I know it is hard to get up but you are giving your baby an amazing gift that you cannot get back so it is really worth it to struggle at night and get up and feed your baby. It is short term and you are creating an amazingly healthy person for life.

See Wendy Haldeman, RN, MN, IBCLC's video on Is okay to top-off with formula after I breastfeed?...

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Wendy Haldeman, RN, MN, IBCLC

Lactation Specialist

Wendy Haldeman, MN, RN, IBCLC is a co-founder of the Pump Station and Nurtury. She received both her nursing and lactation education at UCLA, is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), and a certified Happiest Baby on the Block instructor. She lectures frequently on human lactation at medical and nursing schools and has been identified by publications, such as Fit Pregnancy, as an expert in her field. Wendy facilitates the New Mother Support groups, and teaches the prenatal Breastfeeding and Baby Care Classes at The Pump Station. She and her husband Tim are proud of their two grown daughters and their 15 month old granddaughter.

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