Human Milk Proteins Inhibit Bacteria M. Luteus - Breastfeeding Benefits for Toddlers, Too!

Vicky Green, first year biosciences student at South Devon College in the U.K., has conducted a microbiology research project that appears to lend further support to an often overlooked fact: human milk is powerfully beneficial for toddlers, too! In fact, one thing we know from lactation sciences is that as a baby ages, milk from mom changes to fit a child's immunological needs. This includes becoming more concentrated and power-packed in fighting viruses and bacterial infections with each small amount of milk consumed by a busy, bustling toddler on the go.

Green told The Huffington Post that she and her classmate, Emma Browne, "...decided to test whether antimicrobial properties of breastmilk changes the older the child is feeding for a small microbiology project."

In her experiment, Green has two samples - one (BmA) from a mother nursing her 15 month old baby, and another (BmB) from a mother nursing her 3 year old toddler. [Additional information on the natural human weaning process.] Bacteria M. Luteus was added to the petri dishes as a small white disc, and soaked in the two samples of human milk. The clear space around the remaining discs is where the proteins in the milk have inhibited the bacteria. Sample BmB has acted more quickly than sample BmA. Whether this is a statistically significant difference is not determined.

There could be several reasons for differences of results (mom of sample BmB may have further antibodies built up for M. Luteus, for example). However, both samples show that human milk is successful in breaking down the bacteria, and Green's findings align with research that demonstrates the milk of a nursing baby increases in immunological density with age. In this fashion, a baby receiving all nutrients from mother's milk ('exclusively breastfeeding') is given an all-day, all-night course of immunity boosting antibodies through her milk. An older toddler, who is receiving a smaller portion of nutrients via mom's milk, also receives this vital immunity boost, but in a lesser quantity of milk. To do so, the human body concentrates these antibodies into a smaller, powerful nursing session on-the-go, and the child has the support s/he needs as the immune system and brain continue on their rapid journey to full development. [The immune system and brain do not reach near-completion until approximately age 5, which tends to correlate with an age of natural weaning cessation.]

Green found similar results with E. coli and MRSA [Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus] as well. "I'm also doing [an experiment on] colostrum in a couple of weeks," writes Green, and concludes on her Facebook post, "The future is bright, the future is breastmilk."

Nursing mothers with babies of all ages are welcome to join The Breastfeeding Group:

Related Reading:

HAMLET Substance in Human Milk Kills Cancer Cells:

Microscopic View of Human Milk, Cow's Milk, and Formula:

Human Milk and Formula Ingredient List:

The Medicinal Uses of Human Milk:

[Book] Baby Matters: What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Caring For Your Baby
Dr. Palmer's book explores more of the science behind human lactation and its impact on immunity and neurological development. A must-read for anyone interested in these topics. 

Making More Milk: The Feedback Inhibitor of Lactation:

Natural Weaning:

The JOY of Nursing Toddlers:

GOOD Breastfeeding Books for Nursing Mothers:

Natural weaning postcards available on Etsy or the Breastfeeding Materials page.


Why You Should Consider a Career in Education

By Alex Martin © 2017

Why You Should Consider a Career in Education 

There are many misconceptions that exist today about seeking a career in the education sector, but for those interested in the field, it is often found to be the most rewarding experience of life. Many believe that teachers are consistently overworked, underpaid, and must have a love for small children in order to be successful in the field. However, many of the preconceived notions are incorrect. A career in education is much more than what happens inside the classroom. Education offers different exciting opportunities at every level, and each plays an important role both in and out of the classroom setting. Consider the following if you feel a career in education could be right for you.

Endless Opportunities

Working in the education sector means playing a role in a constantly shifting environment, no matter which area of the field you go into. Opportunities in education are nearly boundless, and offer exciting roles for people from all walks of life. If you have a passion for helping to develop young minds, look into an early childhood education degree at Gwynedd Mercy. Desire to go in-depth with a subject and pass your knowledge of history or science on to the next generation? A career in education can be focused outside the classroom as well with work readily available for skilled administrators, nurses, and other more generalized areas that can meld your personal talents with your interest in education. With the right requirements, a substantial income can also be made while practicing something you’re passionate about. Take your time to explore all areas of education to find the one that suits you best.

Life Experience Matters 

Your lived experience is perhaps the single most important thing you can bring to work in an education setting. Education is a field that has been dominated by women since WWII, however, studies show that the more diversity a child is exposed to from role models and leaders, the more well-rounded their education experience can be. Consider the impact that you could have in a child’s life. Maybe you’re a member of a minority group with a unique insight into the world that you can offer to your students. Maybe you’re an aspiring male teacher with a heart for teaching grade school and early childhood education who can exemplify a strong leader to his students. Maybe you’re an aspiring female teacher in a STEM field who can inspire other women to get involved in science and technology. Representation has shown to be a powerful tool in a child’s educational tool-box, and you have the incredible opportunity to be part of that story simply by being you!

Inspiring Minds 

Working in education can be as inspiring as it is challenging. Teachers tell stories of another teacher before them who inspired them - often as a child - to follow a path toward education. While you may find yourself challenged on a daily basis, consider how the knowledge you impart can become the basis of the next big idea in science, technology, or social justice. Think of the ways you were inspired by your education, and imagine passing on that passion for knowledge onto your students every day. It’s pretty incredible! Working in the education sector is not all lesson plans and grading quizzes. As an educator, you play a vital role in furthering society and shaping a better world for the future — perhaps the most important position there is. If you’re excited about seeing the potential for greatness in every student, look no further than a career in education.

Venturing into a career in education is not for the faint of heart, but can be the most rewarding experience of your life when you find the position that’s right for you. Do your research before seeking out a degree program, and learn your state’s requirements for entering into the education sector. Whether you want to teach kindergarten, work in a district office, or become a single-subject teacher for high-schoolers or higher education, you’ll go to work every day with the opportunity to change the world little-by-little, student by student. If you’re excited to share your passion for knowledge and inspire future generations every day, a career in education could be right for you.


Reasons to NOT Wear Your Baby Facing Out

Above infographic from Boba

9 Reasons NOT to Carry Your Baby Facing Out

1) It does not support your baby's legs.

2) It makes it tougher for the wearer to carry baby (babies naturally fit curved tummy to chest).

3) It places your baby in an arched or hollow back position which places pressure on baby's spine.

4) It places too much pressure on a baby's pelvis, and may chaff the inner thighs of your baby.

5) It may overstimulate your baby, leading to increased anxiety and disorientation, or sleep troubles even when baby is tired.

6) It does not support baby's head or neck.

7) It makes thermoregulation (baby's internal core temperature being regulated by a caring adult's body temperature) more difficult.

8) It makes responding to baby's cues more difficult (or unable to read facial/non-verbal cues).

9) It throws off baby's center of gravity, does not improve their balance, but can hinder this, and isn't great for a parent's back either.

Above example from The Eco Friendly Family

When selecting your favorite carrier or wrap, opt for one that supports the thighs from hips to knees, and does not 'dangle' baby from the crotch. Wear your little one facing in (chest or back) and ensure his or her airway is always visible and not covered.

Related Reading: 

Fun babywearing books to read with little ones:

The Kinderpack - our favorite SSC (infant, standard, toddler, preschool):

The Benefits of Babywearing:

The Science of Attachment: Biological Roots of Love:

Babywearing: Safe Positioning:

The International Babywearing Symbol:

Why Forward Facing Isn't For You:

The Babywearing Group:

Kinderpack Buy/Sell/Trade Chat Group:


Is my baby ready for solids?

Is my baby ready for solids? 

This is a quick check list to know for sure. If YES to all of the above, your little one may be ready to begin babyled weaning (i.e. consumption of the first non-milk items).

If no to even one, waiting a little longer may be best. Watch your baby, not the dates or the calendar (except for age minimums). There is no harm in delaying the starting of solids for a baby who is otherwise nursed/fed on cue around the clock, and there are many benefits (immunity, development, gut health) up to a certain point, and when it is done in baby's own perfect timing.

Additional good reading on this topic and more: 

Baby Matters (the science behind why waiting matters):

Take Charge of Your Family's Health (chapter on breastfeeding, and chapter on starting solids/natural weaning):

Natural Family Living (chapter on breastfeeding/starting solids):

Our Babies, Ourselves (sections that address breastfeeding and weaning throughout humanity and around the world today):

How Weaning Happens (an oldie but goodie!): 

Babyled Weaning:

Parents with little ones moving into their weaning days are welcome to join the Babyled Weaning group on Facebook:

Breastfeeding moms are welcome to join:


So God Made a Mama

So God Made a Mama

And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, "I need a homemaker."

So, God made a mama.

God said I need somebody to get up early, lay out clothes, bake biscuits, fry bacon and eggs, set the table, and wake and feed four kids, and then get them on the bus on time.

So, God made a mama.

I need somebody with strong arms - strong enough to tow a sick four year old while mopping the floor, yet gentle enough to soothe the worst boo-boo with a simple kiss.

Somebody to make the beds, who'll sweep the floors, wash tons of clothes, make lunch (for a working husband), shop for groceries, pay the bills, and still have time for supper.

So, God made a mama.

God said I need somebody to gather eggs, pick tomatoes, mend broken bibs, and can make clothes and bake cake from scratch.

Someone who can give four baths, can help with homework, brush four heads of head, and love four different children equally.

So, God made a mama.

God had to have someone to give up her piece of pie, wipe tears from their eyes, give comfort for every bad dream, and take care of every lost stray the kid could bring home.

So, God made a mama.

God said I must have someone who never thinks of themselves, only takes what's left. And somebody to work from before daylight to dark, and then through the night, without never once stopping to rest. Someone who could make gourmet meals from leftovers, who would pull up covers and gently kiss each cheek at night. It had to be someone who would check on their neighbor, rock sick kids forever, and still never complain a bit. She had to be someone who would read from the Bible, knew church was a staple, and God and family was first on her list.

So, God made a mama.

-Woody Woodruff

More from Woodruff:


The Webster Technique: Chiropractic Care During Pregnancy and Birth

By Jeanne Ohm, DC
International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) Executive Coordinator

Chiropractic care benefits all aspects of your body's ability to be healthy. This is accomplished by working with the nervous system - the communication system between your brain and body. Doctors of Chiropractic work to correct spinal, pelvic and cranial misalignments (subluxations). When misaligned, these structures create an imbalance in surrounding muscles and ligaments. Additionally, the resulting nerve system stress may affect the body's ability to function optimally.

The Webster technique is a specific chiropractic analysis and diversified adjustment. The goal of the adjustment is to reduce the effects of sacral subluxation/ SI joint dysfunction. In so doing neuro-biomechanical function in the pelvis is improved.

Dr. Larry Webster, founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association discovered this adjustment as a safe means to restore proper pelvic balance and function. This specific sacral analysis can be used on all weight bearing individuals to determine S/I joint dysfunction/ sacral subluxation and is therefore applicable for the entire population. The assessment includes heel flexion to buttocks, with restricted flexion indicating the affected SI joint. Correction is made with a diversified, sacral adjustment. It is used on all weight bearing individuals presenting with this biomechanical restriction. Common symptoms include (but are not limited to) low back pain, sciatic neuralgia, and symptoms associated with sacral subluxation and/or S/I joint dysfunction.

The ICPA recognizes that in a theoretical and clinical framework of the Webster Technique in the care of pregnant women, sacral subluxation may contribute to difficult labor for the mother (i.e., dystocia). Dystocia is caused by inadequate uterine function, pelvic contraction, and baby mal-presentation. The correction of sacral subluxation may have a positive effect on all of these causes of dystocia.

In this clinical and theoretical framework, it is proposed that sacral misalignment may contribute to these three primary causes of dystocia via uterine nerve interference, pelvic misalignment, and the tightening and torsion of specific pelvic muscles and ligaments. The resulting tense muscles and ligaments and their aberrant effect on the uterus may prevent the baby from comfortably assuming the best possible position for birth.

In regards to pregnant mothers, Dr. Webster reported that when a mother sought care and her baby was in a breech position, the restoration of pelvic neuro-biomechanics with this adjustment also frequently facilitated optimal fetal positioning. There are cases published in the chiropractic literature that support this theory. More research is needed and is currently underway by the ICPA.

The obstetric literature has determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affect birth outcome and decrease the potential for undue stress to the baby's developing spine and nerve system. Obstetric literature has determined the importance of normal pelvic neuro-biomechanics including uterine function and pelvic alignment for the prevention of dystocia (difficult birth). It has also determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affects birth outcome and decreases the potential for undue stress to the baby's developing spine and nerve system.

Chiropractic literature has determined the significance of sacral adjustments in normalizing pelvic neuro-biomechanics. It is therefore considered prudent that this specific sacral analysis and adjustment be used throughout pregnancy to detect and alleviate sacral imbalance and optimize pelvic neuro-biomechanics in the mother. Because of the particular female adaptations from the increase of hormones, weight gain and postural adaptations, pregnant mothers have a greater chance of sacral subluxation and neuro-biomechanical imbalance than the general population. Additionally, because of the effect the chiropractic adjustment has on all body functions by reducing nerve system stress, pregnant mothers may have significant benefit by having their spines checked regularly throughout pregnancy, optimizing health benefits for both the mother and baby.

Further Resources

The International Chiropractic Pediatric Association offers classes of instruction and awards qualified attendees a Certificate of Proficiency in the Webster protocol. Only those doctors on our site maintain recognized certification status for the Webster protocol.

Parents: to find a Certified D.C. in your area, visit our Membership Directory:

To read research about this technique visit:

To read about the history of the technique, see the following two resources:

Questions about the Webster Technique (Pathways for Family Wellness):

Doctors: to attend a Proficiency Workshop, visit our schedule for Seminars:

Dr. Jeanne Ohm's "Perinatal Care" seminar offers Webster Certification:

Expecting mothers are welcome to join either of these Facebook groups:
Birthing: (more holistic)
Pregnant Moms Due this Year: (more mainstream)


Reasons to Skip Swaddling

By Wendy Priesnitz for Natural Child Magazine
Shared with permission.

The practice of wrapping newborn infants tightly in blankets that restrict movement of their limbs is an ancient one, happening even before Biblical times. Its popularity has ebbed and flowed, but it is still routinely practiced in many hospitals, and is making a comeback among some parents, either in the form of a tight blanket that holds the baby’s arms and legs straight, or a looser form of wrapping that keeps the arms free. There are, increasingly, commercial “baby swaddles” and other swaddling paraphernalia, as well as YouTube videos to teach parents how to swaddle correctly.

Swaddling is done for many reasons, including warmth, the prevention of scratching, and to calm crying and fussiness in hospital nurseries and at home. Unfortunately, swaddling seems to conflict with the emotional care that is the basis of attachment parenting and other conscious ways of being with children, in addition to having some physical problems. Here are some reasons not to swaddle your newborn.

1. A baby cries for a reason and the parent’s job is to quickly determine the reason for the cry and solve the problem with milk, attention, pain relief, motion, a dry diaper, a temperature change, or whatever is required – with the priority on fixing the situation, not on stopping the noise. Wrapping an infant up tightly might lessen her crying, but it might also make her feel abandoned and stressed, rather than relaxed and content.

2. Swaddling leads newborns to sleep more and deeper. That will provide a welcome respite for tired parents, but it will also interfere with skin-to-skin bonding, and lessen the frequency of feeding, slowing weight gain and increasing dehydration.

3. Swaddled babies look so warm and cozy. However, they can become dangerously overheated – not only because of the effect of the blanket, but because they can’t wave their arms and legs around to cool themselves off.

4. Babies need skin-to-skin contact. Those who don’t get it feel profound stress. Skin-to-skin contact can also reduce the stress of being born. As well as helping regulate a newborn’s temperature, skin-to-skin contact also helps stabilize his breathing, hormone levels, and heart rate.

5. One purpose of swaddling is to soothe the newborn by reminding her of the womb. However, a fetus has freedom of movement in utero that is not possible when swaddled. Her post-birth freedom to wiggle toes and fingers (and put them in her mouth) and wave arms and legs is part of the developmental process and helps develop both muscle control and the nervous system. Recent studies have shwon that movement helps improve cognitive functioning in people of all ages, and infants are at a stage of rapid cognitive development. They can't explore how their bodies work when swaddled. 

6. Swaddling has been implicated in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). (It’s also believed by some that swaddling lowers the risk of SIDS because it prevents a baby from rolling onto his stomach, which has been linked to SIDS, and prevents him from covering his face with a blanket as he squirms.) While a swaddled newborn might stay in the position in which he was laid down, older swaddled babies have been known to flip themselves over and get stuck in the face-down position. Overheating has also been linked to SIDS.

7. Swaddling can contribute to dysplasia of the soft hips of newborns, which can lead to problems with the joint later in life. According to the International Hip Dysplasia Institute, “Sudden straightening of the legs to a standing position can loosen the joints and damage the soft cartilage of the socket.”

8. The risk of upper respiratory infections can be increased by the hampered ability to breathe deeply when infants are tightly swaddled. In one study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, the risk of developing respiratory infections increased fourfold in swaddled infants.

One of the swaddlers is advertised in this way: “The first several months of Baby’s arrival can be quite tough on the sturdiest of new parents. The [product] has been proven to greatly extend sleep periods between feedings...allowing Mom and Dad more extended rest, enhanced relaxation, and peace of mind.” I think there are more empathetic ways to soothe our babes.

Wendy Priesnitz is the editor of Natural Child Magazine. She is also the editor of Natural Life Magazine and Life Learning Magazine, the author of twelve books, and a journalist with over 35 years experience. She is the mother of two adult daughters.

Related Reading:

Baby Sleep Resource Page

CoSleeping Group

To witness infant genital cutting: to witness sexual assault

"It is virtually impossible to witness infant genital cutting and not recognize this act as a form of sexual assault." -Danelle Frisbie

The two most common forms of unnecessary infant genital cutting currently in practice in the United States include male circumcision by Gomco Clamp and male circumcision by Plastibell. If you've not previously witnessed how these surgeries take place, often without anesthesia, we invite you to research further, beginning with linked resources and videos below. 

Related Reading: 

The Plastibell Lie

The Perils of Plastibell Circumcision: A Mythical "No Cutting, No Risk" Method

Baby Dies Post Plastibell

Massive Infection Takes Over Body After Plastibell Circumcision

The biggest lie told to parents (a registered nurse speaks)

If this stained circumstraint could talk...

Intact vs. Circumcised Outcome Statistics 

Death From Circumcision

Should I Circumcise? The pros and cons of infant circumcision:



Related Posts with Thumbnails