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BEWARE of “Standard of Care”

Beware bewareBy Laura Hayes

Being the mother of vaccine-injured children teaches you many important lessons, with perhaps the main lesson being to question everything, research thoroughly, and make your own decisions. Listen to and trust your own maternal instincts. Don’t be coerced, harassed, or forced into doing anything you are not completely comfortable with or don’t want.  Learn to speak up and stand your ground firmly…your children are counting on you…and you will be the one to live with the consequences for each and every parenting decision you make.  So make the time to take the time to decide carefully, very carefully.

Rule #1: Question EVERYTHING

Rule #2: Research THOROUGHLY (including, and especially, from non-industry and non-governmental sources…seek sources that don’t profit from that which you are researching)

Rule #3: Make your OWN decisions, don’t be swayed by someone just because they are wearing a white coat (as a matter of fact, learn to be extra leery of those in white coats)

Let’s begin with prenatal “standard of care” procedures that need to be questioned, researched, and carefully considered prior to accepting:

  • Ultrasounds are now performed on virtually every pregnant woman in the U.S. Remembering back to my first pregnancy, my doctor told me I had ovarian cysts after my first ultrasound, and he began ordering weekly (!) ultrasounds for me. At the time, my insurance did not cover ultrasounds (they were $800 a pop, mind you). When I finally disclosed this to the receptionist, wondering how many more of these expensive procedures I would need, she was shocked that I’d been paying out of pocket the whole time. She looked uncomfortable when I told her that. Quite magically, the next week, my cysts were declared gone, no more ultrasounds for cysts needed!  I have since come to find out that the year that occurred was the year they were testing new ultrasound machines that were many times “stronger”. Were my baby and I experimental test subjects, without knowing, and without informed consent?  I do not know, but I most certainly wonder. Dr. Kelly Brogan, among others, has written about the universal use of ultrasound during pregnancy,  so perhaps begin your research here.

  • Vaccines are now recommended by the CDC for pregnant women, including the Tdap and influenza vaccines (that’s a total of 4 vaccines). Those of you who have read previous articles of mine know that no safety, efficacy, or necessity claims can be made for any vaccine, much less the myriad combinations in which they are haphazardly given, because the needed studies to make such claims have never been done. The same goes for vaccines given during pregnancy.  Barbara Loe Fisher of NVIC has written an excellent article regarding the lack of safety data that exist despite the CDC recommending vaccines for pregnant women. Reading her article is an excellent place to begin one’s research.

  • Gestational diabetes screening includes drinking a nasty beverage that includes genetically-modified ingredients, chemicals, food dyes, and other ingredients that have no business inside the human body, much less inside a developing fetus. Does every woman need to be screened for GD? Are there other ways to screen without the use of a toxic beverage being consumed by both mom and fetus? I remember drinking that foul-tasting beverage 3 times over, once during each pregnancy, and thinking, this can’t possibly be good for me or my baby. Correct I was. A quick Google search will lead you to many helpful articles, but here is one to get you started.

Moving on to decisions expectant parents will need to make:

  • Home birth, birthing center, or hospital…research and consider all of your options carefully. Remember that hospitals are not the safe havens you might envision them to be. Hospital errors are now the third leading cause of death in America. Read about that fact here.

  • Midwife, doula, doctor, combination thereof, or none of the above…again, research and consider all of your options carefully. Interview potential candidates until you find one who shares your philosophies about pregnancy, childbirth, and newborn care.

  • Catheterization during labor and delivery. This can lead to difficulty urinating after the catheter is removed, bladder and kidney infections, subsequent prescriptions for antibiotics due to infections, pain and discomfort for the mother when post-catheterization infection occurs, exposure to antibiotics for baby if mom is breastfeeding…and all for an unnecessary birthing intervention. See this informative article to learn more. I know of instances where this invasive medical procedure was recommended for mothers during non-problematic labors…one accepted, one declined. The one who accepted went on to have a serious kidney infection which lasted for many weeks, requiring multiple rounds of antibiotics, while she was breastfeeding.

  • Electronic fetal monitoring will almost certainly be used at the hospital, unless you say no. This is an ultrasound procedure, which requires that the laboring mother be lying down confined to a bed. As with prenatal ultrasounds, safety, necessity, and potential drawbacks need to be considered. Here is an article which includes information that electronic fetal monitoring is excruciatingly loud for your baby in utero (that would be the same for prenatal ultrasounds, too).

  • The use of pitocin at any point, including to deliver the placenta. Research this ahead of time. Decide whether or not that is a drug you will accept, and if so, under what circumstances.


  • Delayed clamping of the umbilical cord to allow the full and complete transfer of blood and oxygen from mother to child versus more immediate clamping as is often done in hospitals (for convenience?). The timing of clamping is very important, so do your research. You can begin here. To ensure your decision is adhered to, alert not only the person who will be delivering your baby, but also the person who will be with you for support during childbirth, so that person can make certain that your instructions are followed.

  • Painful injections and/or procedures of any sort for your newborn…is this how you want to welcome your baby into the world? See the next few bullet points for some specific ones that are now considered “standard of care” and routine for all…unless the parent says otherwise.

  • The vitamin K shot is routinely given to all newborns in the U.S., and in the state of NY, it is mandatory, with no opt out. You can do a Google search titled “dangers of the vitamin K shot” for numerous articles on the subject, including this one by Megan Heimer, a must read! Furthermore, at least one brand of the vitamin K shot includes aluminum, which is given at a time when the blood-brain barrier does not exist. Do you want aluminum in your baby’s brain, organs, blood, and body? Dr. Larry Palevsky points out that the vitamin K shot includes castor oil, which can cross react with other proteins in tree nuts, peanuts, and seeds…leading to the increasingly-prevalent food allergies we are seeing in children today. Click here and scroll down to A Growing Epidemic: Food Allergies in America to also read what he says about vaccine ingredients causing the food allergies our children are now experiencing at an alarming rate.

  • The hepatitis B vaccine is recommended to be given to all children at birth (can you hear me screaming?!). There is absolutely no valid or justifiable reason to give this to all newborns, This is one procedure you do not want to blindly allow for your newborn, and you can begin your research here and here. If you decide to birth your baby in a hospital, and you do not want this vaccine for your newborn, do not leave your baby unattended at any time during your hospital stay! Many parents have reported that their babies were vaccinated with this vaccine in the hospital against their clearly-stated directives when they were apart from their baby.

  • Genetic screening of newborns via a heel prick and the squeezing out of blood. CA now mandates a newborn genetic screening test which tests for 80 various metabolic, endocrine, and hemoglobin diseases. Opting out in CA requires signing a form, NBS-TR (CDPH-4459), so if that is what you want to do, obtain and sign this form in advance, and have it with you at the hospital or birthing center. How accurate are the results and what will be done with those results? If the baby tests positive for one or more of these diseases, will the parents be required/forced to pursue specialists and treatments? Will they be monitored by the state? Will their child be removed from them by the state if they don’t comply with medical advice? On the Notice of Information and Privacy Practices from the California Department of Public Health it states, “You may request in writing that we restrict disclosure of your or your newborn’s information for health care treatment, payment and administrative purposes. We are not required to agree to your request.” (Bolding mine.) If you want to read some critically-important reasons why you might want to refuse genetic screening tests in the hospital (and instead consider doing specific ones through a private doctor if you want to rule anything out), read Twila Brase’s chapter “Genetic Information: Where Do We Go from Here?” in the excellent book Vaccine Epidemic. This RN’s chapter is only 5 pages long, but what an eye-opener!

  • Circumcision…if you are considering this for your son, I recommend reading this article by Dr. Mercola regarding the best/safest day to have this procedure performed.

  • Antibiotic eye ointment, like the vitamin K shot and the Hepatitis B vaccine, is given routinely to all newborns in the U.S., and is mandatory in the state of NY. It is administered to prevent conjunctivitis resulting from a gonorrheal or Chlamydial infection in the mother, which can lead to blindness. Is this necessary/safe/wise to give to every newborn? Here is an article to begin your research.

  • Supplemental formula is often recommended when no need exists (and even if a need exists, is manufactured formula the answer versus breast milk from another mother, or a homemade formula?). The foisting of unnecessary manufactured formula happened to me after the birth of my first child. Because she was on the small side, I was told to supplement her with soy formula after every feeding (the same formula of which they had cases they were giving away for free). This directive was given even though she was nursing well with no problems, even though I had no problem producing colostrum then breast milk, and even though there was no concern that she had a milk allergy or lactose intolerance. Needless to say, I could kick myself for doing as told. Fortunately, I didn’t supplement with formula for long, but once was one time too many. Breast milk and breastfeeding have far too many benefits to begin to list here, but breast milk is best for baby, and it is regular nursing by the newborn that stimulates the mother to make the proper amount of milk for her baby. Unnecessary supplementation disrupts that important feedback process and reduces critically-important nutrients to the baby, while introducing foreign, potentially harmful, ingredients to the baby.

  • Nipple shields may be recommended if there are breastfeeding issues or difficulties. This article by La Leche League provides helpful information to address breastfeeding problems a new mother may encounter, thus hopefully avoiding the introduction of nipple shields, and the problems that might result from using them.

This is not an all-inclusive list. The point is there are now LOTS of practices and procedures expectant parents need to consider, research, and decide upon.  Many/most will simply be performed as a matter of routine, without discussion or consent.  Therefore, the burden is on the parents to decide in advance what they do and don't want, and to take steps to ensure that their decisions are respected and followed accurately.  

Do not be pressured into anything!  If you arrive at a prenatal appointment and the nurse/doctor says it's time for so-and-so, and you have not given that consideration yet, simply say, "Not today.  I/we want to look into that first."  If pressure is applied for you to acquiesce to something you are not comfortable with, do not hesitate to leave.  You can always return, or find another practitioner who does not coerce, harass, or force patients into accepting medical treatments and procedures.

Should you choose to have your baby in any type of facility, be it a birthing center or hospital, talk to other mothers who have given birth there to learn more about the climate and practices of the establishment.  Don't put these things off until the last minute.  The best time to begin thinking about all of this is before you enter down the paths of pregnancy and parenthood.  We live in a world of non-stop medical interventions, with an ever-growing list of “standard of care” procedures and treatments. Many of these violate natural and safe practices, not to mention common sense, and are done for convenience and profits, not for health and well-being.

I am not a doctor and don’t claim to be one. What I am is someone who has learned the very hard way that it is I who must take charge of my and my family’s health. I do not wish or choose to hand over that responsibility to someone wearing a white coat. I am concerned that doctors and nurses are not remembering to “First, do no harm.” I am concerned about who is supplying the information that doctors are being taught in medical school and nurses in nursing school. I am concerned that many doctors’ first allegiance is not to their patients. I am concerned about the many entities and forces unduly influencing our medical professionals. I am concerned that we have lost sight of how amazing, brilliant, and finely-tuned the human body is, especially when not poisoned with toxins and harmed by inflammatory agents, and when fed untainted, nutrient-dense foods (think “food as medicine”). I am concerned that we have been taught to disregard common sense, ignore our maternal instincts, forego prayer, and allow those with letters after their names to make decisions for us. We have been wrongly led to believe that our government has our best interests at heart, that doctors would never do anything that would harm their patients, that pharmaceutical products have been properly tested and are safe, and that hospitals are safe places to be.

What I have written here is not a list of directives for what you should or shouldn’t do.  Rather, it is an exhortation which I hope will encourage all who read it to question everything, research thoroughly, and decide carefully. Your children need you to make the time to take the time to become your own expert and their protector.

Written by Laura Hayes, a CA mother who hopes that 2016 will be the year that: vaccine mandates are banned, individual and parental rights with regard to medical decision making will be fully restored (including vaccination decisions), and the 1986 National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act will be repealed (this Act of Congress indemnified vaccine makers and those who administer vaccines from liability for vaccine-induced injuries and deaths). Laura is the mother of vaccine-injured children, one of whom is severely and permanently disabled, requiring round-the-clock care and supervision. She wishes she had been encouraged to question everything, research thoroughly, and carefully arrive at her own decisions.

Comments

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Laura Hayes

Organic Consumers Association (OCA) Sues Two Infant Formula Makers for Falsely Labeling Products Organic:

https://www.organicconsumers.org/press/organic-consumers-association-sues-two-infant-formula-makers-falsely-labeling-products-organic

Folsom momma

What a wonderful gift to expectant parents! Had I known to question the medical "experts" regarding the need for frequent ultrasounds, pitocin, antibiotics, vaccinations, etc (the list of damaging interventions my baby was exposed to in vitro and after birth goes on and on), he might have had a fighting chance at living a "normal" life. Instead, he has a host of permanent medical issues and a developmental disability. I encourage every parent-to-be to read this, do their own research, and confidently make decisions based on their own values, intuition, and expertise. Bravo!

Linda1

I found the link to Sarah Pope's homemade formula FAQ page. I'll show you, Leslie, why people get "vicious". A few excerpts with my comments:

"Liver-Based Infant Formula...

Q. I would like to supplement my breast milk with about 10 ounces a day. How do I figure the amount?
A. I would make up the full batch and give half each day."

A mother who is breastfeeding and wanting to supplement with liver-based homemade or any infant formula should be told that if at all possible, it is best for her baby to be exclusively breastfed until 6 months of age, with breastfeeding continuing at least through the baby's first birthday and beyond. The mother should be told that the benefits of breastfeeding are dose dependent and that any other food given instead of human milk will decrease the benefits. The mother should also be told that if she substitutes a feeding that her breasts will become engorged, that she might develop mastitis and that skipped feedings will decrease her milk supply. There may be a genuine need for the formula or desire to substitute the formula for breastmilk in a mother who is educated and understands the consequences, but that should be established before telling the mother how much formula to make. The implication is that the formula is just as good as the breastmilk, when it is not.

"Formula for Older Children
Q: I have a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old who suffer from asthma, bronchitis, eczema and other chronic issues. Can I use the formula as a supplement? I want a way to get really good nutrition into my kids.
A: This is worth a try. You may want to give the cod liver oil separately. (You can do this with an eye dropper.)"

Really? Is it really Pope's place to be prescribing a diet for chronically ill children?

"Constipation
Q: My baby has become constipated on the goat milk formula.
A: Goat milk is more likely to be constipating than cow’s milk, which is one reason we recommend a formula based on cow’s milk as the first choice. A small amount of diluted prune juice may help and one parent had good luck adding a little warmed molasses to the formula. The Digestive Tea in Nourishing Traditions is also a good remedy. It is very important that baby’s stool not become impacted. A baby suppository should help him evacuate his bowels if the other methods do not work."

Prescribing suppositories? How old is this baby that Pope is suggesting could be fed "a little warmed" molasses that "one parent" had luck with? How much is "a little"? a few drops? a teaspoon? a tablespoon? a 1/2 a cup?

"Q: I have been making the milk-based formula for 10 days and realize that it makes the baby constipated and she only has 1-2 bowel movements per day as opposed to the regular 4-6 she had on formula and they are more solid than liquid.
A: Actually 4-6 liquid bowel movements per day is not normal and the 1-2 more solid bowel movements per day is appropriate. The stool should be firm enough to be shaped, but not hard."

The number and consistency of the stools depends on the baby's age and the type of feeding. This information should be given instead of saying "4-6 liquid bowel movements per day is not normal". That IS normal for a young breastfed infant.

"Lost Weight on the Formula
Q: My 6-month-old baby was doing fine on the cow’s milk formula but suddenly broke out in a rash and lost 3 pounds. Should I switch to the liver-based formula?
A: Whenever there is a sudden weight loss after doing well on the formula, parents should look for other causes. In this case, with questioning, it emerged that the weight loss occurred after the baby had been given 4 vaccinations in one day! Exposure to pesticides or toxins is another culprit. If a cause like this can be pinpointed, then it would be best to stay on the formula that is working for the child. If no other cause can be determined, then try switching to another formula."

I'm sorry. This is blatantly irresponsible. A 6 month old baby breaks out in a rash and loses 3 pounds and Sarah Pope is giving advice? "If no other cause can be determined, then try switching to another formula." Maybe she thinks it is understood that parents will get the baby medical attention, but that is not clear at all, the way this is written. HOW ABOUT - IF YOUR BABY BREAKS OUT IN A RASH AND LOSES 3 POUNDS HE NEEDS IMMEDIATE MEDICAL EVALUATION.

"Spitting Up

Q: What modifications do I make if my baby is spitting up frequently?
A: If you are using the cow’s milk formula, first try eliminating the nutritional yeast, which may be causing the problem. If that does not work, then switch to the goat milk formula; if the problem persists, try the liver-based formula. We can cite several examples of babies who had extreme reactions to any milk-based formula (including projectile vomiting) who did beautifully on the liver-based formula."

This is inappropriate. Projectile vomiting requires medical evaluation. No where in any of these answers is medical evaluation mentioned or advised.

"Using the Lact-Aid
Q: In order to continue to nurse while I am giving formula to my baby, I am trying to use the Lact-Aid device (which carries the formula through a small tube that the baby takes in his mouth while also suckling on the breast). But the formula is too thick and keeps clogging up the tube.
A: Be sure that the formula is well blended (in a blender) before putting it in the Lact-Aid and also that it is warm enough. It is best to use the Lact-Aid with raw milk, not cultured milk, as the latter tends to be thicker. You may also try leaving out the gelatin. One other option is to add about 1/4 cup more water to the formula. The nutrients will be less concentrated, but he is also getting your breast milk."

Why is a nursing mother giving formula through a lact-aid? If the mother is using the device and formula because she had a problem or is stimulating her own milk supply, then the question should indicate that so that the reader does not get the impression that a nursing mother should substitute formula for no reason when she has her own milk to give.

Pope's answer, to leave out an ingredient and to water down the formula (1/4c water to what quantity of formula? a cup? a whole recipe?), reasoning that it's ok because the baby is also getting breastmilk, is alarming. The reader doesn't know if this baby is getting sufficient breastmilk or the reason for the supplementation.

Somewhere on the Weston Price site I read advice not to tell the baby's physician that the baby is on a Weston Price homemade formula. Are you ok with that, Dr. Ayoub? Telling parents to lie to the baby's physician?

http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/faq-homemade-baby-formula/#kidneys

Linda1

Leslie,
One more point. I just read a piece by John Robbins, author of _Healthy At 100_, in which he expresses the impression that Weston Price behaves like a cult (which as you know has been my impression as well):

"For one thing, the foundation exudes an attitude of "you're either with us or you're against us" that is reminiscent of the dark side of cults. Those authors and researchers who the foundation disagrees with are caustically mocked. If these authors happen to subscribe to the findings of modern nutritional science, they are mocked and condemned for being "politically correct." Reputable scientists who dare suggest that saturated fat contributes to heart disease are denounced for being "as pc as pc can be--and totally ignorant."

Robbins also points to an article by Stephen Byrnes on the Weston Price site titled,"The Myths of Vegetarianism." Robbins writes:

"The article is harshly critical of vegetarian diets, and concludes with an "About the Author" section which states: "Stephen Byrnes... enjoys robust health on a diet that includes butter, cream, eggs, meat, whole milk, dairy products and offal." In fact, Stephen Byrnes suffered a fatal stroke in June, 2004. According to reports of his death, he had yet to reach his 40th birthday."

(the Weston Price article says that Byrnes was 42 when he died)

http://www.vegsource.com/news/2009/11/reflections-on-the-weston-a-price-foundation.html

http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/abcs-of-nutrition/myths-of-vegetarianism/

Linda1

Cherry,
You know how a duckling imprints onto the first thing it sees when it hatches? Well, suckling probably isn't the same thing, but, sometimes an infant will get all screwed up and not be able to strip milk from the breast after having a bottle. Not always. It could have to do with gestation age or birth events, drugs, etc. When a bottle is put into the mouth, the slightest movement of the lips or tongue will cause formula to flow to the back of the throat and the baby has to swallow or he'll choke. With breastfeeding, the action of the tongue is very specific. The peristalsis of the GI tract starts in the tongue. In some babies for some reason, once they have that bottle, the movement of the tongue is altered and the baby then can't nurse effectively to strip the milk from the breast and stimulate more to be made. That's why people jump through hoops to avoid that early bottle, because no one can tell which baby is going to have a problem. This old article shows what the baby's tongue does - notice that the nipple is extended far back into the back of the baby's mouth- very different from the bottle nipple (see figure 1 on page 3):
https://www.health-e-learning.com/articles/anatomy_of_latch.pdf

Linda1

Leslie,

I am surprised to learn that you are on the board of the Weston Price Foundation. In answer to your points:

"1) I do not consider wikipedia a reliable source of information on anyone but you may."

That's why I qualified my statement with ("so who knows") Was the information about Dr. Enig incorrect?

"2) The average life expectancy of an American woman in 2012 was 78.74 years. Mary well exceeded that by a long shot. Are you suggesting there was a problem with her diet that led to an "early" death?"

Very possibly, yes.

3) Seventh Day Adventists do live longer than the general population but they don't drink alcohol, smoke, or drink tea and coffee. Interestingly, while they have lower rates of some cancers, they have much higher rates of others. To compare them to the general population is not appropriate as not eating meat is not the only factor. See for references: http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/abcs-of-nutrition/myths-of-vegetarianism/

I am not aware of higher rates of some cancers among Adventists. At any rate, the point is that a plant-based diet devoid of meat from fetus to grave has not hurt them or stopped them from successfully breastfeeding (as Weston Price Foundation would have one believe). Perhaps instead of ignoring the research, we should all think twice about not only meat consumption, but smoking and ingesting caffeine and alcohol.

"4) All cause death rates for meat eaters are lower than that of vegetarians. Given that most vegetarians are by definition more health oriented than the average omnivore, it is noteworthy that the death rate is higher for vegetarians. In addition, although vegetarian eaters have lower rates of some cancer, omnivores have lower rates of cancer overall. You can read more here: http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/vegetarianism-and-plant-foods/"

That link goes to a page full of opinions and is referenced to other Weston Price articles full of opinions. I have not seen any evidence that vegetarians have a higher mortality rate. I have seen exactly the opposite. Dean Ornish published his research reversing coronary heart disease back in the early 90's. He proved that a very low fat diet, along with life style changes (meditation and social support) did, on scan, show reversal of blocked arteries. Decades later, Dr. Ornish's program is now accepted by Medicare. It is the exact opposite of the Weston Price high fat, high animal protein approach. There are many other doctors who have had great success and many patients who can attest to the healing and health benefits of a plant-based diet (I am one of them).

"5) The foundation has never said vegetarians can never safety breastfeed or the diet is inadequate for children, rather that vegetarian diets have special nutritional needs they need to be mindful of so that they do it healthily and that vegans have a bigger challenge in this regard."

That is not the impression that I got from the site. The home page shows a smiling family and in large print above "They are happy because they eat butter!" It's kind of comical.

"6) The Weston A. Price Foundation does not advocate the consumption of factory farmed dairy products, rather, raw dairy from healthy pasture-fed animals. The data you reference refers to industrial milk, not raw milk from pasture-fed animals."

Raw cow's milk is still cow's milk, biologically different from human milk, meant to be digested by a calf with 4 stomachs. Are you saying that raw cow's milk is less diabetogenic, less allergenic, less inflammatory, and easier for a human infant or adult to digest than pasteurized cow's milk? If so, why? How do you explain the many years of research done by Dr. Campbell showing casein to be a potent cancer inducer in animal models? Is there research showing that people following a raw milk, high animal protein and fat diet do not develop cardiac disease (including hypertension), cancer and other diseases?

"7) Dr. Enig's and the foundation's primary message is that healthy fat from healthy properly raised animals provide the fat soluble vitamins that are essential to life. That said, we also advocate that roughly half the diet is raw and plenty of vegetables are consumed."

A,D,E and K are abundant in plant sources. (D mostly from the sun).

"8) We totally agree that focusing our energy on protecting our own ability to lactate and nurture our young is imperative which is why we advocate a traditional whole foods diet with plenty of animal fat absent sugar, processed foods and most importantly, industrial vegetable oils."

What I read was very negative toward breastfeeding, as though it is very difficult. I also got the impression that the homemade formula is superior to the human milk of a mother with a typical diet. I have a big problem with that.

"9) Many children with vaccine injuries have been healed by adopting a Weston. A. Price whole foods diet."

That's good to hear.

"10) I would recommend visiting our website to find out who we are, what we recommend, etc. rather than taking the opinion of another group that has an ideological mission. Everything on our site is referenced in the scientific literature."

I did read Sarah Pope's Q&A and can't find the link again. She gave some crazy sounding advice, like to salt a baby's meal and a bunch of other stuff that didn't sound at all kosher. The other sites that I visited were criticizing based on the science that I am aware of - not ideological - in my opinion appropriate and justified. I also noted on the site that there were many mothers reporting adverse reactions to the formula (rashes, spitting up, etc.) and Sarah Pope was advising them on what to do. That didn't sit well with me either.

"11) Many folks would call you whacky for even questioning the safety of vaccines but that does not make you whacky or a religious cult."

I have no problem with sourcing the best foods. I agree that if one is going to eat meat that it should be from animals that have been well cared for (until they're killed). As I said earlier, I don't get the raw milk aspect at all, especially for adults. We aren't calves. The Weston Price high fat, high animal protein diet contradicts the information and experience that I have. The animosity toward Dr. Campbell, and saying that he is defending an ideology instead of his own research over a 40 year career, is offensive. You gave me a link to a 20 something year old blogger, an English major no less, to refute the work of an esteemed 80 something year old scientist.

In your first comment, you say: "If the baby is at least 8 months, sitting up well and eating some solid food, then there would be no danger to the kidneys and that is a good point to switch; however, if the baby is small, has digestive issues or is very fussy, it might be best to wait until one year before switching from formula to cows milk."

There would be no danger to the kidneys, based on what?

Re Sally's comment: "WAPF is a huge advocate of breastfeeding, and of nutrient-dense diets for the breast-feeding mother so that her breast milk can be of highest quality. But there are many situations where the breastfeeding just doesn't work out--the most common being insufficient supply, which some doctors estimate at about 10 percent of nursing moms. For these women, the homemade formula can make all the difference for her child. We recommend that 10,000-20,000 babies have received our homemade formula so far, and with excellent results. WAPF had received a lot of criticism for advocating this formula, saying that it discourages women from breastfeeding--some of this criticism has been quite vicious and that is what Sarah is responding to. However, I can tell you that this formula has been a godsend for many babies, most of whom were born to mothers who are dedicated to the concept of breastfeeding."

Sally, your premise is that a nutrient dense diet is a prerequisite for breastfeeding. Projecting this attitude undermines confidence and puts unnecessary pressure on the breastfeeding mother. It isn't true. If a perfect diet was necessary for successful lactation, the human race would never have survived to modern times. It is true that today it is not only about nutrient dense, it's about sourcing clean, uncontaminated, unprocessed food. The extent to which environmental contamination affects human milk is a whole other issue.

Re insufficient supply - in nature primary lactation failure would be very rare - nowhere near 10% of women. In modern times the causes are largely iatrogenic and from mismanagement (intrapartum drugs, handling of the infant, maternal infant separation, bottle feeding, pacifiers, not feeding on baby's demand, early complementary feedings, etc.).

Years ago I read a book the name of which escapes me now. It was a family's true story that wasn't about food. The book tells how at one point the father had a heart attack and the mother lamented that he only ate organic animals that they raised on their own farm. Didn't make a difference. He still got heart disease.

I appreciate your both coming forward to share your position.

David Brownstein, M.D.

Great article!! The best patients are the patients who educate themselves before taking a drug or going through surgery. Many doctors do not like to be questioned. I welcome my patients' questions.
Laura's questions need answers. It us up to all pregnant/recently delivered mothers to take an active role in their healthcare decisions. In fact, all patients need to take an active role in their health care decisions.
Thanks for this informative article.

John Scudamore

Barcelo exposes the hospital birthing standard of care as deliberate child abuse http://whale.to/a/birth_trauma.html

david ayoub

I have the highest regard for Westin Price and their book Nourishing Traditions. We made raw milk formula on all our kids, no allergies or GI bleeding, just chubby happy babies
Not one spit up among all 3 kids
regular stools, no issues
i mean a good baby fat chubbie

we had a good source of grass fed animals

d ayoub, md

Stephanie Seneff

Thanks for this great article, Laura! It's so difficult for a young woman today to navigate all the landmines associated with pregnancy and the neonatal period. One issue I'd like to add to the list is folic acid. The US government seems to be obsessive in its emphasis on folic acid supplements during pregnancy, augmented with folic acid fortification in the wheat-based products -- and now it's required in corn-based products as well! It's easily the case that a pregnant woman gets an overdose of folic acid, especially during the third trimester when it can work against the fetus' brain health. Folic acid is a synthetic, oxidized, unmethylated bastardization of the naturally occurring methyl-folate. Too much folic acid can end up blocking folate uptake in the fetal brain, paradoxically leading to a cerebral folate deficiency problem. I gave a presentation on this topic at last November's WAPF Wise Traditions Conference. And I wrote an article for the WAPF journal as well.

Cherry Misra

Hey Laura, What a great title. It means a lot to me today. How did I spend today- a holiday in India ?- Well, first I wrote and typed an article explaining the dangers of Gardasil. - Because the Indian government is poised to add Gardasil to their schedule. And then I spent time writing about how to avoid the hep b vaccine at birth, because, among other things, in India, many babies are given a high mercury vaccine. So what happens? The babies are unable to breastfeed and the mother has a nightmare. Then it turns out that this has been accepted by the medical profession, which tells the mom to feed her baby with a spoon and lo and behold there is a specially designed spoon available !! and I have yet a couple more papers to write that would not be necessary if as someone on AOA once wrote- Modern pediatrics weren't " running on insanity ".

Cherry Misra

Regarding breast feeding, what most annoys me is the La Leche types - no doubt well-meaning- who tell mothers to never put a bottle to a child's lips because he will then not be able to feed from the breast. Absolute rubbish- You dont lose millions of years of evolution in a few days. Not everyone has a good milk supply in the first few days and why should they get stressed when the baby can be fed with a bottle for a couple of days. but after all the discussion- what IS the best milk to give if you dont have breast milk??

Cherry Misra

To Katie, For some people there are advantages to circumcision. I know one man who suffered terrible pain being circumcised as an adult, and yes, it was necessary. My friend tells me that she met a man who suffered many bladder and kidney infections before he was circumcised. He lived in a very warm climate. Otherwise, I am generally opposed to most surgical interventions, unless clearly necessary.

Leslie Manookian

Hi Linda1,

A couple of things I wanted to address. Please know I am writing this in bullet form not to be short but because I am short of time. I fully respect that you may have a different view or opinion but am offering these data-points and references in response to some of your assertions which are not correct.

1) I do not consider wikipedia a reliable source of information on anyone but you may.

2) The average life expectancy of an American woman in 2012 was 78.74 years. Mary well exceeded that by a long shot. Are you suggesting there was a problem with her diet that led to an "early" death?

3) Seventh Day Adventists do live longer than the general population but they don't drink alcohol, smoke, or drink tea and coffee. Interestingly, while they have lower rates of some cancers, they have much higher rates of others. To compare them to the general population is not appropriate as not eating meat is not the only factor. See for references: http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/abcs-of-nutrition/myths-of-vegetarianism/

4) All cause death rates for meat eaters are lower than that of vegetarians. Given that most vegetarians are by definition more health oriented than the average omnivore, it is noteworthy that the death rate is higher for vegetarians. In addition, although vegetarian eaters have lower rates of some cancer, omnivores have lower rates of cancer overall. You can read more here: http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/vegetarianism-and-plant-foods/

5) The foundation has never said vegetarians can never safety breastfeed or the diet is inadequate for children, rather that vegetarian diets have special nutritional needs they need to be mindful of so that they do it healthily and that vegans have a bigger challenge in this regard.

6) The Weston A. Price Foundation does not advocate the consumption of factory farmed dairy products, rather, raw dairy from healthy pasture-fed animals. The data you reference refers to industrial milk, not raw milk from pasture-fed animals.

7) Dr. Enig's and the foundation's primary message is that healthy fat from healthy properly raised animals provide the fat soluble vitamins that are essential to life. That said, we also advocate that roughly half the diet is raw and plenty of vegetables are consumed.

8) We totally agree that focusing our energy on protecting our own ability to lactate and nurture our young is imperative which is why we advocate a traditional whole foods diet with plenty of animal fat absent sugar, processed foods and most importantly, industrial vegetable oils.

9) Many children with vaccine injuries have been healed by adopting a Weston. A. Price whole foods diet.

10) I would recommend visiting our website to find out who we are, what we recommend, etc. rather than taking the opinion of another group that has an ideological mission. Everything on our site is referenced in the scientific literature.

11) Many folks would call you whacky for even questioning the safety of vaccines but that does not make you whacky or a religious cult.

Cherry Misra

Great comments, Laura, on the topic of the catheterization, I would like to say that I would advise any birthing mom to have her own assistant monitoring this. I know a person who was in labor for two days and finally as the baby showed stress, the Harvard trained doctor decided to do a C section. Going through the prep for the C section, the doctor realized that the nurse had never inserted a catheter as instructed earlier. On insertion, two liters of urine poured out and the mom saw the doctors face turn white behind the mask. The bladder could have ruptured, and it would have been an emergency and the doctor could have been sued. The birth had been obstructed by the enlarged bladder . the baby was then born quickly and normally. The more "procedures" we introduce into birthing, the more chances for error come along with them.

Leslie Manookian

Hi Linda1, my name is Leslie Manookian, I am the producer of The Greater Good and am also on the board of the Weston A. Price Foundation. I wanted to respond as some of what you wrote and the sources you cite are not correct. First is a comment from our President and Founder, Sally Fallon Morell. Then I'll make a few more comments at the bottom.

From Sally: The recommendation of homemade formula based on raw milk is one of WAPF's most controversial subjects. This began 35 years ago when I had trouble breastfeeding my second child. (Everything fine for the first child). I used a recipe then available based on raw milk and he just thrived on it--as did my 3rd and 4th children.

WAPF is a huge advocate of breastfeeding, and of nutrient-dense diets for the breast-feeding mother so that her breast milk can be of highest quality. But there are many situations where the breastfeeding just doesn't work out--the most common being insufficient supply, which some doctors estimate at about 10 percent of nursing moms. For these women, the homemade formula can make all the difference for her child. We recommend that 10,000-20,000 babies have received our homemade formula so far, and with excellent results. WAPF had received a lot of criticism for advocating this formula, saying that it discourages women from breastfeeding--some of this criticism has been quite vicious and that is what Sarah is responding to. However, I can tell you that this formula has been a godsend for many babies, most of whom were born to mothers who are dedicated to the concept of breastfeeding.

The formula is composed of diluted cows milk, for indeed, straight cows milk would be too strong for most infants. But at some point you can switch to regular raw whole cows milk. If the baby is at least 8 months, sitting up well and eating some solid food, then there would be no danger to the kidneys and that is a good point to switch; however, if the baby is small, has digestive issues or is very fussy, it might be best to wait until one year before switching from formula to cows milk.

Regarding Colin Campbell, he is mistaken. WAPF is a non-profit nutrition education foundation.

Now back to Leslie: With respect to Sarah, I know for a fact - directly from her - that she is a strong proponent of breast feeding and breastfed her own 3 children for 2 years plus. There is often more to these issues than the name calling one reads online like those in the vaccine awareness arena being called baby killers.

With respect to T. Colin Campbell, I would suggest you review Denise Minger’s critiques of Campbell to get a fuller picture of him and his work. https://rawfoodsos.com/the-china-study/

Linda1

So it turns out that the Weston Price Foundation was founded in 1999 in Washington by Sally Fallon and that, according to Wikipedia (so who knows), Fallon recruited Enig to explain Price's observations. Enig, it turns out, died of a stroke at age 83. I don't know what kind of a stoke she had, but this reminds me of Dr. Atkins, who sold his diet as heart healthy, and then himself dropped dead of a heart attack (may they both rest in peace).

Dr. Enig was right about a lot of things, but I believe she was also wrong about some important things too. In the 1970s, I was impressed to learn that the vegetarian Seventh Day Adventists had much lower morbidity and mortality rates than the mostly, at that time, carnivorous population. Weston Price Foundation wrongly asserts that vegetarians and vegans cannot safely breastfeed and that a vegetarian or vegan diet is not adequate for children. The Seventh Day Adventists prove them wrong, with many generations living as vegetarians and vegans in good health (they are to false dietary health claims what the Amish are to false vaccination safety claims). I subscribe to the work of T. Colin Campbell and believe that the scientific evidence is on the side of a plant-based diet, in my opinion best mostly eaten raw. I do not think that humans should be drinking the milk of cows or dogs or any other mammal, raw or cooked, and that we ought to focus our energy on protecting own own ability to lactate to nurture our young.

The Weston Price Foundation smells to me like a religious cult. There are a lot of wacky statements on their site. Here is an article by Dr. Joel Fuhrman:

http://www.vegsource.com/news/2010/07/the-truth-about-the-weston-price-foundation.html

And one about cow's milk from Thomas Campbell,MD, son of T. Colin and coauthor of _The China Study_:

http://nutritionstudies.org/12-frightening-facts-milk/

Seventh Day Adventist research:

https://news.adventist.org/en/all-news/news/go/2015-03-16/vegetarian-diet-cuts-risk-of-certain-cancer-adventist-study-finds/

And what about the link between bovine protein and the development of type 1 diabetes? Good article by Sayer Ji:

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/confirmed-anew-cows-milk-may-trigger-type-1-diabetes

Sterling Hill Erdei

About vitamin K.
As we know genetics are important.
What happens if a child is born with FVL (Factor V Leiden) or FII (Factor II Prothrombin) and they are more common than you could imagine. The play a huge role in early clot, DVT, stroke and death. I feel that parents should be tested for these two mutations and if there is a mutation, that a child at birth should not be given K. K will promote clotting and in someone who already has hypercoagulation this can be dangerous.
Also there is G6PD. The most common enzyme deficiency in the world. It is located on chromosome X so when a boy inherits a G6PD mutation, they are at even higher risk than females. G6PD is related to hemolytic anemia. That is why we see more males than females die from hemolytic anemia. All in all it is still not good for a child with G6PD mutations and even worse for a child with G6PD deficiency. As Stephanie Seneff states. It has been proven that glyphosate impacts G6PD in a negative way. The WHO estimates over 400 million worldwide have G6PD deficiency.
Vitamin K , the vitamin K family comprises 2-methyl-1,4-naphthoquinone (3-) derivatives.
Do you hear the word quinone?
People with compromised G6PD have trouble breaking down quinolonic acid. They should NOT avoid vitamin k rich foods but taking vitamin K supplement can really impact someone with high levels of quinolonic acid. This is why beans are really bad for people with G6PD compromised as well as tonic water and moth balls. You can learn more at www.g6pddeficiency.org.
So giving vitamin K injection at birth can be dangerous for many newborns.
I write blogs about G6PD quite often at www.mthfrsupport.com because the deficiency impacts the MTHFR gene.

Karen Woytowitz

Laura,

Great article. My first son (born in 1992) was 9lbs 6 oz at birth. He was labeled "fetal macrosomia" and "hypoglycemic" at birth. Because of this, the pediatrician ordered round-the-clock formula feedings on him stating that he needed the feedings to keep his blood sugar up; that I would not be able to provide enough nourishment for him "at least initially". Not having done much reading on the subject, I was afraid to deviate from her recommendations. Being a sleepy baby, it was difficult getting the prescribed amount of formula into him, and I was worried about the whole blood sugar issue. Needless to say, our breastfeeding experience was a disaster. I would urge all new moms-to-be to do your homework. Take a breastfeeding class and read books AHEAD of time, and keep infant close at all times so you know what is happening. Be prepared for unforeseen circumstances, and have a lactation consultant ready to jump in and help in the event nursing isn't going well, or the doctor is recommending unnecessary supplementation. And obviously, it is important to make sure that your pediatrician is well educated and will go the extra mile to help make breastfeeding a success.

Sun~Rose

Just now finished reading everyone's comments, and feel I must add this.

We had friends whose daughter was born some months before our daughter, and son before our son. When their son was 12 something got stuck and he had to be circumcised. I don't think it was a happy experience.

And in ninth grade I did this humungous health projects and never forgot what one book said: "Mothers! Prevent cancer of the penis! Circumcise your sons! This was an old book, back when doctors made house calls and mailed you your bill.

Linda1

Laura,

Before I read your article, I didn't know much about the Weston Price Foundation and I never heard of Sarah Pope. This homemade formula has bothered me all day, wondering if I'm missing something. I looked back at the Weston Price site and saw a Q&A about the formula with Sarah Pope answering. She advised someone to go from the homemade formula to straight raw cow's milk at 8 mos. That isn't right. Among other things, that is a stress on a baby's kidneys because all the extra constituents in cow's milk have to be removed from the blood by the kidneys (a high renal solute load). She was also giving other questionable advice. I looked further. T. Colin Campbell, author of The China Study, says that the Weston A. Price Foundation is "a Washington-based agricultural lobbying group" http://nutritionstudies.org/grass-fed-animal-agriculture/.

Then I found this blog which confirms what I picked up on in Pope's formula making video. This article shows Pope referring to breastfeeding advocates as "breastfeeding Nazis" and she is rude to people asking questions.

https://unlatched.wordpress.com/2013/04/02/the-weston-a-price-foundations-dangerous-breastfeeding-advice-should-not-be-ignored/

https://unlatched.wordpress.com/2013/04/09/hey-weston-a-price-foundation-language-matters-how-not-to-be-a-breastfeeding-advocate/

Sorry to be so picky about this one small point. You made it clear that breastfeeding is very important. I don't think Pope feels that way.

Another thing - In her new book, Dr. Brogan states that 25% of women of child bearing age now take psych drugs. It wasn't like that a few decades ago. Just my opinion, I don't think it's good for a baby to be exposed to those drugs through mother's milk. What a mess.

Michelle

You are so spot-on Laura! Thank you for this great article and the valuable links too!

Heather Kovac

Thank you, Laura, for this excellent list of items that should be researched before you are in your ninth month of pregnancy...preferably before you're pregnant! All too often I see mothers and fathers wait until they are in the hospital to even think about these things and they are completely vulnerable to the bullying and fear-mongering of the doctors and other health care workers. Only when you educate yourself and understand how the body works and the risks of the "standard of care" procedures will you be a true protector of your child. I will share this article far and wide! Thank you again for taking the time to write it.

Laura Hayes

Linda1,

Thank you for reading my article and for your thoughtful and informative comment. I always appreciate what you write and take great interest in your comments here on AoA :)

I do feel the need, however, to defend Sarah Pope, known to many as The Healthy Home Economist. Sarah has a well-read blog with well-researched, well-written, and interesting articles, articles which often challenge conventional orthodoxy, be it medical, nutritional, or other.

The homemade formulas she was demonstrating making are not her personal recipes, they are those of the Weston A. Price Foundation, and can be found in the excellent book "Nourishing Traditions" authored by Sally Fallon and the late Mary Enig, PhD (Mary had a PhD in Nutritional Science and was an expert in fats and lipids).

I also wanted to clarify that Sarah is a fierce and staunch proponent of breastfeeding as evidenced by just 2 of her many articles that discuss breastfeeding:

http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/the-battle-for-the-benefits-of-extended-breastfeeding/

http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/low-blood-sugar-used-to-derail-breastfeeding-in-hospitals/

I greatly appreciate the excellent information you shared, Linda1. Hopefully, mothers who are unable to breastfeed for some reason, and who can't secure breast milk from another nursing mother or breast milk bank, will do their research and come to their own decisions which with they feel comfortable and confident.

Kelly Brogan

The beauty of the internet is that the information is out there - for the taking - should you choose to expose yourself to it. As Maya Angelou said "...now that I know better, I do better"!

Danchi

Vote now
Are unvaccinated school-aged children a public health hazard?

http://www.medpagetoday.com/Pediatrics/Vaccines/57405

Angus Files

How to Build a Healthy Microbiome, Before, During, and After Birth

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/12/29/healthy-gut-microbiome.aspx

MMR RIP

Sun~Rose

What a labor of love for mothers and babies. Wonderful!

Bayareamom

"...For me, personally, it's to the point that when I HAVE to see a physician, I go with garlic around my neck, my ears sticking up on alert, and with one hand holding a large cross and the other hand outstretched in front of me, palm out, the whole time..."


Well, now there's a picture (grin). In light of this rather dim subject, this did provoke a much needed chuckle.

That being said, thank you, Linda, for this comment. I wish I had known some of this back in 1993 when I had my son. He was extremely allergic to cow's milk formula; we had to switch him to a soy based formula which he seemed to tolerate very well.

I had no breast milk to offer my son at birth (inherited condition from my maternal grandmother). I was given ZERO support regarding breast feeding from the lactation 'expert' at Denver's Rose Medical Hospital, so was left swinging in the wind with this issue. A nurse literally held up three cans of formula to me the next day after I'd given birth, and asked me which one I would choose to offer my newborn. Can you imagine?

I didn't know what the hell I was doing, so opted for can no. 2. This was a milk based formula; the consequences for our son after feeding him this, were heartbreaking.

Celeste

Amen, Laura. Nowadays, I look at whatever public health tells us to do -- and do the opposite!

Linda1

How sad is it that the medical profession across the board has destroyed its reputation to the point where they can't be trusted to take out one's garbage? For me, personally, it's to the point that when I HAVE to see a physician, I go with garlic around my neck, my ears sticking up on alert, and with one hand holding a large cross and the other hand outstretched in front of me, palm out, the whole time.

This situation that these sadists have created is now creating another problem. Now we not only have to be wary of them, but of those who would fill their crooked shoes in giving advice that we can't trust them for. There are some things on this list that are making me twitch. I hope that when people read this, they don't just say to themselves, 'that's it, no vitamin k', without actually doing the research. Under some circumstances, vitamin k probably does save lives - according to experts and research that I do consider to be reliable. I'm not sure that some parents are able to tell who is reliable and I hope that they actually read the reference to Dr. Mercola and Dr. Palevsky's article. It could be a disaster if they don't do their homework.

The other thing is the homemade formula. Not being melodramatic, I might have a stroke over this one. I watched Sarah Pope's video that you referenced, Laura. First red flag: She says breast milk is best if from a (and she emphasizes) "well-nourished" mother. That's bottle feeding speak for 'formula is best because no mother eats well enough to breastfeed'. Believe me, I've come across this false belief a thousand times - often from well credentialed self proclaimed infant nutrition experts. Pope has degrees in economics and business administration. Not that a degree in nutrition would convince me that her formula is ok. Far from it, because I know that it isn't. Just a few points:

The mucosal lining of an infant's GI tract is permeable (wide open) to invasion by foreign proteins and pathogens. I can't remember how long it takes for it to become less permeable but it is not in the first several months. Human milk takes care of this by coating the GI tract with secretory IgA (Immunoglobulin A) that acts as a barrier, preventing anything from crossing into the blood that doesn't belong there. There are many, many other factors in human milk that guard the baby from invasion as well.

Feeding RAW cow's milk to a human infant is STUPIDITY, because, I don't care how clean you think the cow is and the process of collecting the RAW milk, there is going to be some bacterial contamination sometime in all the many feedings made with RAW milk. The baby will have NO PROTECTION from this bacteria. Also, the raw milk has, of course, bovine protein, which is a LARGE, ANTIGENIC MOLECULE, which can pass into the baby's blood supply via his intestines. Not every baby will show clinical signs of an allergic reaction, but EVERY BABY FED UNPROCESSED BOVINE PROTEIN WILL HAVE AN ALLERGIC REACTION that can be detected via the blood.

Cow's milk irritates a human infant's intestines, causing bleeding that leads to anemia. That's why commercial infant formula contains added iron. I am no fan of commercial infant formula, but I am less of a fan of homemade infant formula. Human milk contains enough iron that is uniquely bioavailable (just because one feeds a certain quantity of something to a baby doesn't mean that the substance can be absorbed and utilized by the baby's body. The concept of bioavailability is very important.)

Sarah Pope says that the protein in commercial infant formula is denatured, and for that reason, she says that her homemade formula is better. Commercial formula denatures bovine protein ON PURPOSE in order to make it less allergenic. Even with that heat treatment, some babies still cannot tolerate commercial bovine formulas and a percentage of those that are allergic to bovine protein cannot tolerate soy protein (which is also highly allergenic) and end up on the protein hydrolyzed formulas (Nutramigen, etc.). Those formulas are the most hypoallergenic because the proteins have been treated more extensively in the hope that the human immune system will not recognize the protein as foreign. See the problem here? Pope has no clue. It is much better NOT to send a baby's immune system into overdrive with her raw cow's milk formula in the first place.

What else? Oh, all those added oils and ingredients. This is another prime set-up for inciting all kinds of allergies. Remember, the gut is wide open.

She doesn't take into account babies with genetic predisposition to immune system disorders, who will have a higher risk of reacting to her formula.

ANOTHER GIANT RED FLAG - Pope says that adding cream to her formula will help the baby to be less fussy, more satisfied and baby will sleep longer between feeds - the old, 'it must be good if the baby sleeps longer between feedings' myth. At birth, the size of a human infant's stomach is about the size of a WALNUT. Human infants are designed to be fed little and often, like several times an hour at first. They are not designed to be put down for long stretches (or at all) in between feedings. They are supposed to be held close to keep them safe, warm, stimulated (neurologically), and FED.

Finally, even if this homemade formula was a good thing, which it most definitely is not, it scares me to death that parents not knowing any better (through no fault of their own, it's not like we learn anything useful in school like the scientific basis for how infants should be fed) will get creative with the recipe and substitute what they have or ingredients that they think might be better. Another phenomenon I've come across - many people think that infants can eat just about anything. Nothing could be further from the truth, and substituting anything for human milk or adding anything to human milk can be very dangerous and is not something to be taken lightly.

Imagine having a procedure in the 8th and 9th months of pregnancy where the doctor disconnects the placenta and starts to infuse some newfangled concoction instead of what babies have traditionally gotten from the placenta while in utero, you know, because you are not "well nourished" enough. Would you go for it? Feeding Sarah Pope's slop is not that different.

My generation was fed watered down canned Carnation milk with added karo syrup, and I have the immune system to prove it. I have a long list of allergies. I am not one to say, 'well, I survived homemade formula, therefore...".

Laura is absolutely right in this excellent and thought provoking article informing parents to beware and to do their homework. I have to add: beware of people like Sarah Pope too.

Laura Hayes

Katie,

Reposting my last paragraph for you to read again:

"What I have written here is not a list of directives for what you should or shouldn’t do. Rather, it is an exhortation which I hope will encourage all who read it to question everything, research thoroughly, and decide carefully. Your children need you to make the time to take the time to become your own expert and their protector."

Lenny Schafer

I would recommend the book "Immaculate Deception II: Myth, Magic and Birth" by Suzanne Arms for any parent considering child birth options.

One can lessen one's fear of over-reaching, self-serving doctors by getting recommendations from trusted health conscious friends. Any doctor who pressures too much over vaccinations is doing you a favor by revealing themselves to be unsuitable care providers.

Paul Champion

Re: prenatal. Might I suggest humbly to be wary of any doctor that looks upon a pregnancy as a disease. Likewise, clamping the cord. Too soon - instant anemia.

Anna Quandt

Thank you, Laura. This is a little off topic but to the point of "make your OWN decisions."

My son is high functioning. The doctors couldn't figure out what was wrong with him. In fourth grade they decided he was bipolar and put him on depakote along with four other medications. He was crazy as a loon and landed in a mental hospital for two weeks.

As coincidence would have it, I read "As Nature Made Him" by John Colapinto while my son was in the hospital. This is the story of the young man, damaged during circumcision, who --under the best care available from Yale -- was raised as a girl. The trusting parents did everything the doctors told them to do! It is truly a cautionary tale.

I took my son out of the hospital, took him off all medications and vowed that although I would listen to experts, I would NEVER do anything with respect to my son's care that my gut didn't tell me was right.

You must make your own decisions, and believe in your own good judgement.

Katie

I am also shocked that in one sentence you bemoan painful procedures for newborns and then in the next simply tell parents the best day to have their baby circumcised! What in the world?

Katie

The best/safest way for your baby to be circumcised is for them to be NOT circumcised. Circumcision has risks, significant ones, in fact, and numerous life long side effects that are currently being discovered. We in the vaccine-questioning/refusing crowd know very well that we need to ask hard questions about benefits vs risks before submitting our children or ourselves to medical procedures. What are the benefits of circumcision, you ask? Well, I'm not entirely sure, I haven't discovered any. Why subject your baby to risks and side effects without a clear stated benefit to their health?

Danchi

You should add to the list the episiotomy. Women who have this procedure will need more pain medication and antibiotics after delivery which, if breastfeeding will get into the newborn. Also, according to my Doctor episiotomy is the number one cause of incontinence in women who have had vaginal deliveries due to pelvic floor collapse.

Tim Lundeen

Superb article, Laura. Thanks!

Dr Adrienne Carmack, an MD, wrote an excellent book about her research and experience, and she is extremely supportive of all your advice. I give it to those friends and family who have to see a white coat to trust the advice :-)

The book is Reclaiming My Birth Rights: A Mother's Wisdom Triumphs Over the Harmful Practices of Her Medical Profession Paperback -- http://www.amazon.com/Reclaiming-Birth-Rights-Practices-Profession/dp/0990306003?ie=UTF8&psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage

Patience (Eileen Nicole) Simon

Laura, Thank you for compiling this list, and especially for including decisions about birth. Most important is that the umbilical cord remain intact until blood flow to the placenta ceases naturally. Blood flow to the placenta continues after birth until the fetal heart valves have closed. The fetal heart valves close after blood flow has been redirected to the lungs.

Clamping the cord immediately after birth is a serious medical error, but the medical establishment refuses to admit this. An obstetrician can lose his license if he fails to clamp the cord within seconds after birth. This rigid protocol was put in place in the mid 1980s. Textbooks before that time all taught that pulsations of the cord should cease before tying or clamping it.

Clamping the cord before the first breath is the beginning of a brief period of asphyxia. A distinctive pattern of brain damage is caused by 5 to 10 minutes delay in resuscitation. The auditory pathway is most severely affected. This pattern of damage was published in the medical literature during the 1960s and early 1970s, and ignored ever since.

The IACC is meeting today, and I noticed that among materials for the afternoon session is a paper on "What We Know About Noise Sensitivity in Autism." I began attending IACC meetings in 2003, trying to bring attention to auditory system damage caused by asphyxia at birth. Finally they may be beginning to pay attention to this.

Bob Moffit

Laura warns:

"We have been wrongly led to believe that our government has our best interests at heart, that doctors would never do anything that would harm their patients, that pharmaceutical products have been properly tested and are safe, and that hospitals are safe places to be."

Benjamin Rush .. on writing the Constitution .. warned:

“Unless we put medical freedom into the Constitution, the time will come when medicine will organize into an undercover dictatorship to restrict the art of healing to one class of Men and deny equal privileges to
others; the Constitution of the Republic should make a Special privilege for medical freedoms as well as religious freedom.”

Unfortunately we did not take the prescient advice of Dr Benjamin Rush .. but .. thankfully it is not too late to take heed of Laura's hard-learned advice .. which Vigil (70-19 B.C.) .. centuries ago .. advised we do:

"Trust one who has gone through it"

or .. Bralek's rule for success:

"Trust only those who stand to lose as much as you when things go wrong"

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