POSTS WITH TAG: natural parenting

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    In her new book, The Kind Mama, Alicia Silverstone covers everything from her pregnancy to her beliefs on circumcision and vaccination. Though the book has only been out for two days, it's already got tongues wagging, as does a recent interview the famous vegan actress did with People about her parenting philosophies, in which she says she's "not against Western medicine. The problem is we’re using it as a first step for everything, even when it’s not needed."

    Alicia deserves applause for bravely putting that sentiment out there! She's right: We are far too quick to jump to conventional medicine "fixes" -- which can be disappointingly closer to temporary bandages than true cures -- for too many of our ailments.

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    Breastfeeding has many benefits, and one of them is the fact that it can be a natural contraceptive. Don't bank on that though or you may end up pregnant with baby number two before baby number one is 9 months old. But it works ... a lot of the time. As with just about everything, however, there is a science behind this, and it has to do with an infant's competitiveness. Yes, even newborns have a competitive spirit, so says Professor David Haig, who authored a study published in Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health that says breastfed babies prevent pregnancy because they want mom all to themselves. There's more to the reason why.

    There is an undeniable bond that occurs when breastfeeding, and it's that bond that baby wants to keep -- that's part of the reason breastfed babies wake every two hours to nurse, Haig says. And as this study points out, we need to listen to baby's "evolutionary response" and all the motives they have.

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    Spring is here and that means ... family road trip! I'm so glad you decided to travel with your little one because this is what family bonding is all about. Babies, even when they are the littlest, love to see and be in new places. Plus, think of all the amazing photo ops you will have for the baby book!

    Being on the road with a baby and while breastfeeding can present a few challenges, but nothing you can't prepare yourself for, and nothing that can't be solved. Here are some tips to breastfeed while on a road trip. They're simple, but they can help your trip be easier and without any added stress.

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    It's no big secret that she's a fan of attachment parenting, but Kourtney Kardashian keeps defending her decision to co-sleep with her kids -- and I honestly don't understand why everyone makes such a big deal about it.

    In a new interview with Redbook, Kourtney admits that Mason, 4, and Penelope, 19 months, often share a bed with her and Scott Disick -- though some nights they do start off in their own rooms.

    She admits co-sleeping isn't something she set out to do, saying, "It's what came naturally to me; I didn't plan it. When I had Mason, I just felt really attached to him and wanted to bring him everywhere. He ended up sleeping with me, and I breastfed for 14 months."

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    A couple of weeks ago, Deanna Bratter was breastfeeding her baby on a Frontier Airlines flight when a flight attendant told her to cover up. Bratter refused since there was no complaint from another passenger, the lights were dim, and her child was almost asleep. Her husband and 5-year-old child were in the seats next to her. The flight attendant left to bring her the manual which she said stated that a breastfeeding mother should cover up. Another flight attendant came by in the meantime and there was some uncomfortable words exchanged between this person and Deanna's husband. The first attendant returned with the manual which stated Deanna was within her rights to breastfeed uncovered but refused to apologize. As you can imagine, this was a stressful situation.

    Frontier Airlines has responded to Deanna directly regarding this matter and they perfectly display how a company should act when something like this happens.

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    One of the biggest things that holds us back from so many things in life is fear. And fear during pregnancy, specifically during labor, can create a whole host of issues. But for pregnant moms, fear is a huge part of birth -- it's an unknown and experiencing something for the first time often comes with fear. Even if it's a second or third birth -- each time it's new. To ease that fear we educate ourselves, talk to other mothers, try to figure out ways not to be scared of childbirth. Another thing we should all do is read stories of mothers having accidental home births.

    Moms are able to turn off fear in these scenarios because birth becomes what has to be done without any doctors and nurses swarming around checking vitals every few minutes. This mom's accidental home birth should serve as inspiration to us all. 

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    Support. Essential for breastfeeding. And I'm not just talking about a great pillow to help baby be at the perfect angle. I mean support from your partner. Which is why this new campaign is so fantastic -- dads are breastfeeding!

    Well, they would if they could. Hector Cruz and his team are showing support in so many ways with "Project: Breastfeeding," helping to normalize breastfeeding so it's not seen as an obscene act. They are also bonding the family, showing dads how they can support and be educated. They have this campaign to share the knowledge of how to help fathers become a part of the whole process. 

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    We talk about home birth a lot. But around 1 percent of women choose to have their babies at home -- though that number is rising thanks to a natural birthing trend. Home birth isn't something we should fear. We've gone over this before -- women were made to birth babies! It's our superpower. And even though we talk so much about why more women are choosing home birth and natural birth over heavily medicated birth, we should really be talking about why women didn't trust their superpower to begin with. Why did we forget our ability and slowly over time decide we needed a ton of medical intervention to have a baby? Because back in 1900, about 95 percent of births happened at home. By the 40s, that declined to 44 percent. In 1969, 1 percent. But now it's starting to go up again. 

    My theory? Doctors fed us information so we can do business with them. The medical advances are amazing, but they don't always belong in child birth. This infograph should open more eyes.

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    One of the new buzz terms heard more when it comes to birth is "gentle c-section." Which is fantastic because with c-sections on the rise, we should all want women to have the most gentle one possible. Of course it would be better if cesareans were on the decline. With this gentle c-section, moms do skin-to-skin contact with baby right after birth. Seems like a no-brainer. Why wouldn't mama put baby to chest right after giving birth? Particularly after a c-section. But doctors seem to have forgotten the human element in birth and rely too heavily on the technology.

    Skin-to-skin doesn't happen as much as it should. In fact, for the first time in America, a gentle cesarean was performed in May of 2013 where a healthy triplet birth resulted in mom placing her babies on her chest right after birth -- skin-to-skin. First time? What took so long?

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    Let's talk about animal birth for a second. Animals give birth in the wild. They just birth. Why can't we? You don't see giraffes heading to the giraffe hospital asking for a giraffe epidural and having giraffe Pitocin. Humans are capable of birthing in the wild. If we wanted to. If we trusted ourselves more. If doctors trusted the process more. It's not that we are animals -- though sometimes we are just like them -- but can we agree that we are as capable as giraffes to give birth? I'd argue yes.

    That "wild" place for humans would be at home. Home birth isn't some crazy experience reserved only for granola-eating hippies. It's for everyone simply because we can all birth at home -- without intervention -- provided there isn't some sort of extreme circumstance. There is proof. Doctors need to get on board.

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