Skepticism

CDC says postpone breastfeeding: Making up facts, anti-vax style!

Natural News, a website built completely out of 100% organic recycled sustainable locally grown renewable news. They rarely outsource their research to larger organizations, usually preferring to grow their own arguments.

This past weekend, Natural News writer Ethan A. Huff decided to take a trip to the PubMed salvage yard, pick up a scrap study and re-purpose it into a giant display of fabricated outrage:

 

Remember when it was considered crazy talk to suggest that mainstream medicine viewed humanity as being born lacking in pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, as if these synthetic inputs are necessary miracle nutrients for proper human development? Well, researchers from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently showed that they adhere to this lunatic philosophy, having released a study that recommends women withhold breastfeeding their children in order to boost the “effectiveness” of the rotavirus vaccine.

I’m not sure if Huff accidentally smoked his hemp pants or is being ironic… because such a recommendation does not exist in this study. In fact, no study contains such a recommendation. And “recently” is one of those terms that someone would use if they were high and unable to effectively process the passing of time while finding weird hidden meanings in PubMed articles from 2010.

And now I’m the one sober enough to parse through this all and explain it. So grab your organic Funyuns and watch me blow your natural minds.

Huff writes:

Ten researchers from the CDC’s National Centers for Immunization and Respiratory Disease (NCIRD) released the ridiculous paper, entitledInhibitory effect of breast milk on infectivity of live oral rotavirus vaccines, which claims the immune-boosting effects of breastmilk are a detriment to the efficacy of vaccines. The paper goes on to say that, rather than remove vaccines so that breastmilk can do its job, women should instead remove the breastmilk to allow vaccines to do their job.

The CDC researchers began their investigation by searching for answers as to why children from underdeveloped countries typically do not respond as well to the live oral rotavirus vaccine as children in developed countries typically do. They came to the conclusion that breastmilk, which is packed with immune-building immunoglobulin A (IgA), lactoferrin, lysozyme, and various other important immune factors, inhibits the vaccine from working.

For those of you interested in accuracy and non-paranoid reporting, I, as the sober-in-chief editor, will repost the same two paragraphs with the totally-made-up-and-have-nothing-to-do-with-said-study parts stricken:

Ten researchers from the CDC’s National Centers for Immunization and Respiratory Disease (NCIRD) released the ridiculous paper, entitled Inhibitory effect of breast milk on infectivity of live oral rotavirus vaccines, which claims the immune-boosting effects of breastmilk are a detriment to the efficacy of vaccines. The paper goes on to say that, rather than remove vaccines so that breastmilk can do its job, women should instead remove the breastmilk to allow vaccines to do their job.

The CDC researchers began their investigation by searching for answers as to why children from underdeveloped countries typically do not respond as well to the live oral rotavirus vaccine as children in developed countries typically do. They came to the conclusion that breastmilk, which is packed with immune-building immunoglobulin A (IgA), lactoferrin, lysozyme, and various other important immune factors, inhibits the vaccine from working.

I assume Huff decided that the CDC was using reverse trickery and secret code words to confuse the sheeple because what I read as the conclusion (and please read along with me at PubMed) was :

INTERPRETATION: The lower immunogenicity and efficacy of rotavirus vaccines in poor developing countries could be explained, in part, by higher titers of IgA and neutralizing activity in breast milk consumed by their infants at the time of immunization that could effectively reduce the potency of the vaccine. Strategies to overcome this negative effect, such as delaying breast-feeding at the time of immunization, should be evaluated.

Maybe there are infinite ways to interpret that interpretation, but my meager brain only reads it as saying that it might be possible that breastmilk is a culprit in lowered response to vaccines and that someone should look into the idea of mothers refraining from breastfeeding immediately before or after the rotavirus vaccine is administered. Maybe, perhaps a breastmilk fast of a couple hours before and after administration along with a recommendation against nursing the child as a means of comfort immediately following the administration of the vaccine. And that recommendation might only be given to women in the developing world, because this study was specifically addressing a problem in poor and developing countries and not an existing problem in the US.

Natural News, however took those words to mean that the CDC recommends putting off breastfeeding until the vaccine schedule is complete. Because the CDC is stupid and cannot understand that breastfeeding must start as soon as possible after birth in order to begin and sustain milk production. They also think that women are magic milk fairies who can just poof milk into their boobs whenever it’s convenient. (The second and third sentences are just my speculation of what Huff thinks the CDC thinks.)

I wondered to myself, did the CDC ever follow up on this? Did they make a “just to be safe” recommendation? Because I’m a thorough investigator, I thought I should continue to dig far deeper than the Natural News team did. I went to the CDC website and clicked on their search bar and typed in “breastfeeding rotavirus”. Conveniently, the very first result was Rotavirus, Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, The Pink Book: Course Textbook – 12th Edition (April 2011). April 2011! That was just 6 months after they released a study recommending all women delay breastfeeding until their child hits kindergarten!

So I hit ctrl-F and typed in “breast”, as a thorough investigator should… and uncovered the truth THEY don’t want you to know! (“They” being Ethan Huff, mostly.)

Breastfeeding does not appear to diminish immune response to rotavirus vaccine. Infants who are being breastfed should be vaccinated on schedule.

So there you go. There is nothing, not a single piece of evidence supporting the claim that the CDC recommends “delaying breastfeeding” in favor of vaccination. In fact, their website offers information and resources for breastfeeding including the APA and WHO’s recommendations to breastfeed for at least 12 and 24 months, respectively.

Please continue breastfeeding and vaccinating. And if you want to choose just one, please choose vaccination.

Elyse

Elyse MoFo Anders is the bad ass behind forming the Women Thinking, inc and the superhero who launched the Hug Me! I'm Vaccinated campaign as well as podcaster emeritus, writer, slacktivist extraordinaire, cancer survivor and sometimes runs marathons for charity. You probably think she's awesome so you follow her on twitter.

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49 Comments

  1. Oh you so had me until the last sentence. Maybe it is ironic? I know this is not a choice anyone would ever have to make, but I certainly haven’t heard that one is slam-dunk better than the other. I always though both were important to the immune system and complimentary to each other.

      1. I care whether you breastfeed – I don’t have any comparative data on whether it’s better to breastfeed without vaccinating or vaccinate without breastfeeding. Even if I did, I’m certain that the results would vary depending on the location of the child. In locales where clean water isn’t easily available, breastfeeding is likely more important to survival than vaccination. In locales where clean water is available and large numbers of lethal viral diseases are endemic to local populations, vaccination would likely be more important to survival. In areas where the vast majority of people are vaccinated and endemic diseases are few and less lethal and where food/water safety is high, survival likely isn’t the question: healthy long term development is the question. In those cases I wouldn’t hazard a strong prediction of which deprivation would be least consequential.

        But that’s the point: I wouldn’t know. Breast milk does amazing things for brain development, immunological development, and other growth/development processes. I think it’s rather cavalier to assume that deprivation of vaccination must be more serious than deprivation of breast milk.

        I’m no absolutist crying inevitable, irremediable injury to every formula fed baby. But I absolutely care about denying breast milk. Breast fed infants are healthier and smarter, and some of those benefits may last decades (like risk of diabetes and other serious diseases/conditions…not to mention neurological benefits that some researchers say show up measurably during school years, though whether the benefit lasts multiple decades is as of yet unknown) and as far as we can tell, all of those benefits are heightened the more milk is consumed.

        What makes you so quick to assume breast feeding is so relatively expendable?

        1. So what is your advice to this family? Would you have the mother skip treatment for her breast cancer so that her newborn can still be breastfed? Or would you be okay with formula if it meant the mother living long enough for the baby to get to know her?

          What would you choose: breast milk or having a mother who is alive?

          My mother died when I was eleven years old, so please answer carefully.

        2. When Elyse said “It was really more of an acknowledgement that not everyone can or wants to breastfeed.” she was taking into account mothers who adopt their children, mothers who require medication that prevents breastfeeding and other reasons. Reasons that are not the concern to anyone else.

          You need to also acknowledge that these women must not be ignored, nor belittled.

          1. Oh but Chris. You forget that these women aren’t real mothers, are completely unable to bond with their children, don’t love freedom, and probably had an epidural and a cesarean section. Their kids will all be serial killers. We know this because there were no serial killers until formula was invented perpetrated upon society.

        3. What makes you so quick to assume breast feeding is so relatively expendable?

          Maybe it’s because, at least in the places where people are likely to be reading this article, the connections between breastfeeding and almost every “benefit” have not been demonstrated beyond social factors and controls and are at best coincidental and quite possibly spurious. Breastfeeding doesn’t have a demonstrable inverse causality with any of the cited health problems. And the “smarter” has been less than the margin of error in any given testing cycle.

  2. Elyse, I also have to argue with the last sentence. Most people can breast feed with proper education and support, just like most people can exercise with proper education and support. Yes, people have rare conditions that would preclude breast feeding, just like there are rare conditions that would contraindicated exercise or even (gasp!) vaccination,

    There is a reason why breast feeding has tens of thousands of studies on pubmed supporting its myriad of health benefits,. There is also a reason why it is part of the Healthy People initiative. Breast feeding rates are shockingly low in the United States, and the vast majority of formula feeding is not due to inability to breast feed.

    I care that you have such a flippant attitude about breast feeding, and I hope you reconsider your support of it, considering it is an evidence based practice, and that is what your purport to support here. Societal attitudes toward breast feeding are more important to initiation and continuation of breast feeding in the United States than physical barriers to breast feeding.

    I am dreading is turning into a “oh, look at the hippies ignoring the point – vaccinate and hey, woman work ya know” response on the site. I am four months from becoming a physician, worked full time, went to medical school, and pumped breast milk successfully. I had problems with breast feeding that I went to a lactation consultant to help resolve. If everyone just dismissed it with your flippant attitude, which DOES happen often currently, the burden of health care effects is arguably as great as people choosing not to vaccinate.

    1. I breastfed both of my kids for 11 months and 14 months respectively. I am a huge supporter of women who breastfeed, but not every woman has the support, desire, or ability to breastfeed. Regardless of laws, breastfeeding in many workplaces is incredibly difficult, especially those who don’t work in offices.

      Is breastfeeding best for the baby? Absolutely. Is it always best for everyone in the family? No, it’s not. Just because you and I made it work doesn’t mean everyone can. (And for me, continuing to breastfeed meant I had to quit my job.)

      I support that women have to sometimes make decisions that are not the perfect ones, but that are the most reasonable ones.

      1. I agree that refusing to vaccinate your baby is worse for humanity than choosing not to breastfeed, which is I think what you meant.
        But the flippancy is hard to take. For all that there are many strong, vocal supporters and encouragers of breastfeeding out there, the overwhelming atmosphere in North America is anti-breastfeeding. Your having to quit your job is a perfect example of this.
        So, I don’t disagree with you, but you might have worded it better.
        Your over-all post, though, I really enjoyed, and am grateful you took the time to write about it. :-)

      2. Don’t want to double post, but my reply got eaten apparently.

        Your original post and your first reply did not show support of breast feeding. Breast feeding should not be presented as an optional burden that is some sort of unattainable goal for most women, only accomplished by martyrs who quit their jobs and overcome unsurmountable obstacles. Your writing influences future mothers, employers and society. Presenting breast feeding in this light is not support.

        Every health decision has social aspects. Every one. I would be shocked to see the pros and cons of dialysis or chemo outlined with impact on employment and the family in the way that breast feeding is. Chemo may impair your ability to function at work, may cause you to miss days of work, and some people dont desire chemo, so…really? Would that line of thought even be entertained on this site? Every health behavior involves desire to accomplish it. I would be shocked to see smoking cessation dismissed as flippantly with – well, not everyone desires to quit smoking, so “I don’t care if you do.”

          1. Yep x1000.

            It’s unfair to accuse a pro-breastfeeding writer writing a pro-breastfeeding article on a pro-breastfeeding site of not being pro-breastfeeding enough because she acknowledges that some people will choose not to breastfeed.

          2. Please read what Rebecca said. This is a pro-breastfeeding site, and this was a pro-breastfeeding article written by a pro-breastfeeding woman.

            She didn’t judge because one should not judge or try to guilt women who can’t, or won’t, breastfeed. It is a personal decision and no one else’s decision. Also, read mr isconceptions’ comment. Even if you have all the great intentions in the world, you can still come of ass an insensitive jerk because you are pushing your own agenda and trying to make women feel guilty for making a different choice than you would.

          3. Kaloikagathoi: By stating that there is almost no reason whatsoever that a woman should choose not to breastfeed — problems? go to a lactation consultant (because everyone has them readily available always and affordably). Work? Deal with it. Don’t like it? Deal with it. — and comparing formula feeding to smoking, that’s pretty judgemental. That’s incredibly shaming. I’m willing to understand that there are circumstances in women’s lives, most of which are none of my business, that affect their decision to breastfeed.

            I don’t care about their choice.

            I do care about the pressures of society, but that’s a different topic. And the pressures are almost abusive on each side. Shame for breastfeeding in public. Shame for buying formula.

            When my son had to supplement, I made my husband buy the formula because I didn’t want to deal with facing the judging eyes. When I breastfed in public, I faced a different set of judging and disgusted eyes. In my breastfeeding class, we were taught how formula tears holes into an infant’s intestines and that no loving mother would subject her child to that.

            There’s plenty of people telling mothers they’re doing it wrong every step along the way. It’s not helpful. Especially not in those first extraordinarily stressful months of motherhood.

          4. ” I would be shocked to see smoking cessation dismissed as flippantly with – well, not everyone desires to quit smoking, so “I don’t care if you do.””

            Wow. I almost missed that bit. Comparing not breastfeeding to quitting smoking?

            Yeah, you’re not being judgey at all! Totally innocent!

            Puh-lease.

          5. Perhaps I should have clarified. *I* certainly was not asking you to exchange a flippant comment for a shaming session. A middle ground, where you avoid flippancy about deeply problematic issues (such as the obstacles in the way of breastfeeding one’s babies), was what I thought might be preferable.

          6. @ marilove
            I’m getting confused – are you responding to my comment? If so, please go back and read what I have said. I made absolutely no comparison between not breastfeeding and smoking. I’d rather not be turned into a straw man for the sake of defending Elyse from even the most mildly-worded criticism.

            @ Elyse
            I liked your post. I criticized what I thought was an unfortunate shift in tone near the end, and tried to do so politely. I’m sorry if that annoyed you.

          7. I”m an idiot and attributed someone else’s comment as being yours. I apologize.

            I’ll blame it on the fetus-infused spaghetti I just had. It totally made me crazy for a moment.

          8. And now I have to apologize for the tone of my last comment. To restate what I actually mean:
            I did not intend to annoy Elyse or anyone else, though I still stand by my criticism, as well as by my over-all agreement and approval of the post.

        1. And some women simply cannot breastfeed. Funny you should mention chemo, I knew one woman who found the lump in her breast when she was breastfeeding. Zing-bang-zap! No more breastmilk for baby, but surgery and chemo for mom.

          What Elyse did was acknowledge that not every woman can breastfeed. Don’t make a big deal out of it.

    2. @momtfh

      I appreciate the importance of breastfeeding, I do.

      However I would like to agree with Elyse that not everyone can, or wants to, breastfeed. The immediate assumption that this acknowledgment means that she is being flippant undercuts your assertion that there is an attitude of dismissal toward breastfeeding. On the contrary, I find that there is an almost fanatical obsession on the part of some that hurts the very outcome they are trying to achieve.

      Your assertion that most people can breast feed with proper education and support, while it may be true, includes the subtle suggestion that anything short of the correct and full course of breastfeeding is in some way proof of laziness, stupidity, or uncaring on the part of the mother who can’t, or doesn’t wish to, breastfeed. I realize that is almost certainly not the point you are making but the undercurrent is there non-the-less.

      This is the same sort of one-way-to-do-things thinking that brought my wife to tears after she was unable to feed our daughter and was harangued by the La Leche League volunteers who were supposed to be helping her about how awful a parent she was going to be because she couldn’t manage to breastfeed. This was not done in so many words but rather with more subtle language like your above statement and “fact” upon “fact” upon “fact” that showed just how awful not breastfeeding would be, plus the repeated tries to the point of the nurse telling them they needed to leave, at which point she was verbally reprimanded by her superior.

      There are many, many ways to raise healthy happy children and the nay-saying of anyone who refuses to do things the way you think is best seems to be a sport in some circles whether its daycare/preschool, working/non-working mothers, breastfeed/formula etc. And before someone says that vaccinations are just another choice people should be allowed to make, I need to point out that if you do not breastfeed the only people that are directly effected are your baby, yourself, and your family while if you don’t vaccinate the entire public safety net is compromised.

      I know your comment was not meant as an attack, and I hope mine is not seen as one by you, but I just needed to point out the view from the other side.

    3. “Most people can breast feed with proper education and support, just like most people can exercise with proper education and support. Yes, people have rare conditions that would preclude breast feeding”

      I really don’t think I’m that rare. And I had all the education, support, and willpower in the world, yet milk did not flow from my nipples. Thank goodness for formula (and a hospital milk bank for that first month).

      Now, back on-topic: love the post. Anti-vax reading comprehension fail with added government scaremongering. Typical. And sad.

    4. My newborn daughter was left hungry, to the point of dropping well below her birth weight, because the nurses and midwives would not acknowledge that my partner had an insufficient milk supply. Even when the paediatrician ordered supplemental formula feedings, one actually refused to prepare the formula. They took advantage of our trust and let our daughter dehydrate to the point of needing IV or intranasal fluids.

      My partner has PTSD because of these post-natal experiences. She tried her best, and her body was not up to the task. She copped scathing criticism from nurses, midwives, nursing mothers and their support groups, and everyone else who felt they had a say in how we raised our child.

      They were willing and able to hurt my partner and our newborn baby for their incorrect views on breastfeeding. They starved my child and emotionally abused her mother.

      As such I feel confident in telling you that you clearly don’t know what the hell you’re talking about, and your misinformation is hurting innocent people. Please stop.

    5. Maybe just treat it that my breasts, much like my uterus… are none your concern.

      Elyse, this is a great post. As soon as I finished the first paragraph I sadly opened a FB tab looking for friends posting the original article that set you off. I was happy not to find it. I’m passing this one along regardless. Maybe the hippies I know will actually consider it… or maybe I’ll just get hate mail.

    6. Oh for fuck sake. Not everything has to contain a browbeating about OMG HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO BREASTFEED! Acknowledging that not all women are interested or able and are entitled to their bodily integrity and choice is not a booby trap.

  3. Before our first son was born my wife went to La Leche meetings and was prepared to exclusively breastfeed our son. Once he was born we discovered that she has an insufficient milk supply. He lost 2 pounds in his first week, and we had to start supplementing with formula. My wife has PCOS and suffered from ovarian cysts for years before she became pregnant with our first son. Before he was born, we thought mothers who didn’t breastfeed were making a choice and honestly we judged them. After doing our research before our second son was born, we discovered that 60% of women with PCOS have an insufficient milk supply. She was able to explore different methods to help her with breastfeeding her second son. She has had better luck this time, but has still had to supplement. My wife felt immense guilt when she had to supplement with our first son, because she wasn’t emotionally prepared for it. We didn’t believe in insufficient milk supply. I guess my point is to not judge women who don’t breastfeed, because you don’t know all the factors that led them to the choice.

    1. Exactly this. The lactation gulagery likes to pretend that only somewhere between 1 and 5% of women are incapable of breastfeeding. That is not the case. About 10% of women have PCOS, and with 60% of them having supply problems, that means 6% of women are going to face significant challenges from just one condition. That doesn’t include hyperprolactinemia which can cause oversupply which can result in malnourishment. It doesn’t include hypoplasia. It doesn’t include women with mental health challenges (if I hear one more damn flip comment about how women who have struggled to find a medication that works should “just switch to something safe!”…) It doesn’t include women with HIV/AIDS (who, in places with clean water SHOULD NOT breastfeed). It doesn’t include sexual assault victims. It doesn’t include women with DMER (yes it is real). It also doesn’t include babies with health problems or food sensitivities, particularly those very difficult to accommodate or which conflict with the sensitivities of their mothers.

      And all of those are the serious problems. Some of the “basic” problems really can’t be overcome with the simple solutions everyone seems to suggest are perfect cures. Moreover it doesn’t take into account the stress of both the actual effort of breastfeeding and the bullshit guilt piled on top of it and the impact of that one the woman and her mental health–especially considering the prevalence of PPD (which, no, isn’t cured by breastfeeding). For some women, breastfeeding is easy. For some it’s tricky but manageable. For some it is distasteful. For some it is traumatic and triggering. For some it is life-threatening. And all of these women deserve to be recognized.

      Feed your children. Feed them frequently. Don’t feed them goat milk. Snuggle them. That’s all that matters.

  4. Great read! I had to alter the title a bit when I posted to FB though.

    For headline-only-readers (I know I know, but they’re out there!) it wasn’t clear that the CDC didn’t say “Don’t stop breastfeeding.”

  5. “Remember when it was considered crazy talk to suggest that mainstream medicine viewed humanity as being born lacking in pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, as if these synthetic inputs are necessary miracle nutrients for proper human development?”

    Remember when living until your mid-thirties was a statistical fluke?

  6. Oh yes, just what we need: More women shaming other women for the choices they make.
    Yes, choices.
    I breastfeeding better than formula?
    Yes.
    Is wholegrain bread better than white-bread?
    Yes.
    And yes, that is about an adequate comparison.
    Formula isn’t child-abuse. A happy formula-feeding parent is better than a miserable breastfeeding mum.
    Because, you know, women are still people even after the kid is born.
    Modern civilisation allows us to make a conscious decision on these matters (in most cases) and to weigh all the benefits against each other.

    Did I breastfeed? Yes.
    Did I run into a whole lot of difficulties? Yes.
    Did statements like this:
    “Most people can breast feed with proper education and support, just like most people can exercise with proper education and support.”
    and this:
    “Every health behavior involves desire to accomplish it. I would be shocked to see smoking cessation dismissed as flippantly with – well, not everyone desires to quit smoking, so “I don’t care if you do.””
    make me curl up in my bed and cry my eyes out because apparently I was the worst mother in the world totally unable to give her child the one and only thing that child should have after all I read about how almost every woman can breastfeed and how there is naturally enough milk yadda yadda?
    Yes it did, and I really don’t want this shit pulled with any other woman on planet earth.
    Oh, veccination was easier.
    And mouch more important.

  7. How did I guess that this would be turned into a “you are shaming moms!!!” argument?

    Breast feeding is often treated differently than other health behaviors. I never, ever once said that all women can breast feed, or that moms who cannot breast feed are abusing or poisoning their children. I am training to be an OB gyn, trained as a midwife and have helped many women with lactation issues, including one of my closest friends who ultimately was unable to produce enough milk. Another one of my closest friends had to stop breast feeding because of a unique health condition of her child. Yes, there are many, many sad anecdotes of women who were devastated by their lactation problems. Yes, people are shamed. And yes, MOST does not mean ALL. Anecdotes are simply anecdotes, but MOST women can breast feed, and it is not shaming those who can’t to say that.

    All I am saying is discuss breast feeding as a health decision, not as a social decision. Don’t weigh anecdotes or obstacles over its scientific discussion, and most importantly, don’t dismiss its importance flippantly as the last sentence did in the original post. I am sick of every discussion of breast feeding online devolving into some sort of sexist pity fest! And before there’s another huge outcry, I have personally wiped the tears of a woman off of her breast as I helped her attach a supplemental nursing system to help her nourish her infant that was losing weight! I personally cross nursed my best friend’s baby as she cried to me, and then confirmed to her she is a fantastic mom who was saving her child’s life when she finally gave up and switched completely to formula, after seeing two lactation consultants.

    THIS IS NOT SHAMING. Yes, moms have trouble! Yes, it sucks royally! Should that dominate every single online conversation about the benefits of breast feeding? No! Does that mean we just say “it’s a choice, and by the way, its nearly impossible to pull off, and don’t say otherwise!!!” and comment bomb any scientific discussion of it with sob stories?

    Yes, I can compare the DISCUSSION of breast feeding to the DISCUSSION of chemo and exercise and smoking cessation, because these are all also health behaviors. Breast feeding should be discussed like a health behavior. Is it identical? Of course not, but we need a new framework in which to discuss this topic.

    Saying this is somehow a pro-breast feeding blog does not somehow magically exempt the last sentence, the first reply of the OP, or the anecdote of the OP that it is somehow a commentary on all moms attempting to breast feed that she was only able to do it because she quit working, anymore than it is a fair comparison to throw out the anecdote that I knew a medical resident who pumped and successfully exclusively breastfed twins for a year after a mere 3 week maternity leave.

    I am shamed all the time because I am over weight. I have my food choices openly scrutinized in front of my peers incessantly, while their choices are ignored. I will not freak out about this on any online discussion of healthy eating choices. Yes, sizeism is an important issue, but so is scientific discussion of nutriton. There is room for both! The Fat Nutritionist does a great job of this on her blog. With citations!

    Women are shamed for breast feeding. They are kicked out of public places. They are compared to people urinating in public for daring to do it outside of their home. They are called anti-feminist. They are compared to Nazis. There is plenty of shitty shame to go around, and we can choose to not let it dominate the discussion, especially on a supposedly scientific site.

    1. Comparing smoking to not breastfeeding is exactly the shaming behavior we are talking about. No, you cannot compare them because they are not the same things. Not even a little bit! They are so far form each other that your comparison is quite is just ridiculous.

      And your defensiveness, I think, shows that you know this.

      Read what others have said in regards to their own experiences and feelings regarding how others speak to them about breastfeeding. And really think about it.

      It is none of your business. None!

    2. Do you want a cookie for being the brave heroine of breastfeeding and failing at breastfeeding mothers?

      Can we have a scientific discussion about the advantages of breastfeeding? Sure.
      The jury isn’t out on that anymore, it’s not like anybody is disputing that usually breastmilk is best.
      But compared with other health-meassures, like vaccination, chemotherapy, dialysis and non-smoking, it is trivial.

      So, you comforted mothers who were devastated about their failures at breastfeeding?
      Have you ever stoped to think why on earth you needed to comfort them over such a little thing.
      It is not worth one single tear.

      “THIS IS NOT SHAMING. Yes, moms have trouble! Yes, it sucks royally! Should that dominate every single online conversation about the benefits of breast feeding? No!”
      Yeah, let’s just exclude the needs and worries of the women whose breasts the milk is supposed to flow out of from the discussion. Good to see how much you actually care for them.

      “I am sick of every discussion of breast feeding online devolving into some sort of sexist pity fest! ”
      A sexist pity-fest?
      Seriously?
      Could you come up with any evidence for that?
      Remember, just because people are criticizing you, they’re not immediately sexist.
      You also seem to have a strange definition of sexist if you qualify “my body= my choice” as such.

      1. So, you comforted mothers who were devastated about their failures at breastfeeding?
        Have you ever stoped to think why on earth you needed to comfort them over such a little thing.
        It is not worth one single tear.

        Thank you, thank you thank you.

        Women who cannot breastfeed have not “failed” at anything. Ever. Women who choose not to breastfeed have not “failed” at anything. Ever.

  8. Call me crazy, but perhaps the final sentence is brief and “flippant” because this article is not actually about breastfeeding, it’s about a writer on NaturalNews (perhaps intentionally) distorting the results of a medical study?

  9. “The lower immunogenicity and efficacy of rotavirus vaccines in poor developing countries could be explained, in part, by higher titers of IgA and neutralizing activity in breast milk consumed by their infants at the time of immunization that could effectively reduce the potency of the vaccine. Strategies to overcome this negative effect, such as delaying breast-feeding at the time of immunization, should be evaluated.”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20442687

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