Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

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For the Week Ending October 6, 2019. 

Breastfeeding: it’s not just for white girls

Most breastfeeding advocacy, education, and certification is done by white women, but that doesn’t mean that most breastfeeding has to be. Stephanne Rupnicki is the Co-Founder of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Breastfeeding Coalition and Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Breastfeeding Peer Counselor. She promotes and supports breastfeeding among Native Americans. Read more here.

This is important for you because if you are human – no matter what variety – breastfeeding is healthiest for you and your baby.

“I don’t care that he’s my cousin. I love him.”

Although most cultures have taboos around incest, a new study that examined genomic data rather than relying on questionnaires found that it was more common than expected – about one in 3,600 people born in the UK between 1938 and 1967 had parents who were closely related to each other, and not just by marriage. Read more here.

This is important for you because – well, hopefully it isn’t. No judgement though.

National Midwifery Week

The first full week of October is National Midwifery Week. Read more here.

This is important for you because it is a valuable resource if you are interested in having a midwife manage your pregnancy and birth.

The Baby Biome 

Research has indicated that babies born via c-section have different microbiomes – species of bacteria in their guts – than babies born vaginally, but most of the studies done had too few babies to form reliable conclusions. Now a study of 596 babies born in three different hospitals in London has confirmed that the babies’ microbiomes are so different, the researcher could reliably guess how the baby was born just by seeing the bacteria in their gut. Babies born vaginally have commensal bacteria: species that appear in healthy children and adults. Babies born via c-section have opportunistic bacteria that are mainly found in hospitals. But it is still too early to determine what effect, if any, this might have on the c-section babies’ health as they grow up. Read more here.

This is important for you because it will be interesting to see what the ramifications of this difference are as these babies grow up.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was Why Can’t I Sleep Well During The Third Trimester? Maybe because you’re anxious about parenting, your back and legs hurt. And you have to pee every six seconds? Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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