Is Your Baby Drinking Too Much Foremilk?

foremilk

Are you a breastfeeding Mama just trying to figure it all out?

There’s so much information/misinformation, opinions, terms, techniques, emotions etc. when it comes to breastfeeding.  Before we dive into the composition of breastmilk, let me first tell you that you are doing amazing!! Just relax and keep on living the mom life.

What is the difference between foremilk and hindmilk?

Foremilk refers to the milk expressed at the beginning of a feeding.  Foremilk is usually a more clear, watery liquid.  Hindmilk refers to the milk at the end of a feeding, and contains higher fat, vitamins, and calories than foremilk.

My baby is fussy and has green stool, does this mean too much foremilk?

While it’s possible too much foremilk may cause gassiness or green stool in a baby, there may be other reasons for this as well.  Being ill, taking medications, allergies etc. could all be at play.   A healthy baby who is gaining weight well may occasionally have unexplained green stool with no concern.  If you’re concerned, make sure to talk to your doctor.

How do I ensure my baby is getting the right proportion of foremilk and hindmilk?

Good news is that you don’t need to overthink this one. Research indicates there is no reason to worry about foremilk and hindmilk balance and force baby to eat longer.  As long as a baby is breastfeeding effectively and mom does not cut feedings short, baby will receive similar amounts of milk fat over the course of a day no matter what the breastfeeding pattern (Kent, 2007).  It all evens out in the end!

I have an oversupply of milk, how do I prevent baby from consuming excess foremilk?

For women with an oversupply (LIKE ME!), my baby would often be full off of just one breast. I do recommend letting baby finish the first breast completely before switching sides.  This will help ensure baby is getting a balance of foremilk and hindmilk.  For me, since one breast would usually be enough in those early months, I either had to alternate breasts at each feedings, or pump a little off the unused breast after each feed in order to prevent clogged ducts.

  • To help prevent uneven breasts or engorgement in the breast that was not used, you can either use a hand pump or electric pump to remove a few ounces and release pressure.
  • I also have used the *Haaka during feedings, to catch dripage and pull off a few ounces of the foremilk.

Can I store foremilk that I pump off?

You can and should save/store any excess milk you collect or pump off.  If you’re using the Haaka during feedings, or pumping a few ounces off an engorged breast and notice the liquid is thinner and more clear, this is likely foremilk.  Foremilk is totally fine to feed to your baby.

I personally kept foremilk in the fridge and then mixed it with other fattier milk that I had pumped later that day.

Even a frozen bag of mostly foremilk is fine to reuse down the road!  Try mixing into baby’s food too 🙂

There you have it, a little more knowledge on the composition of breastmilk, how to best use excess foremilk, and the permission to not overthink it!

 

*This post contains links to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

What questions do you still have? Comment below!

what is foremilk?


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