The doctor called this morning and said that they tested Ada’s blood for signs of diabetes, anemia, metabolic disorders, proper kidney functioning and maybe a few other things. I can’t remember.
Everything tested normal. The doctor almost seemed surprised when she told me that “Her iron levels were good,” and I was thinking… “Of course they are! She’s eating what nature intended her to eat!”
It’s funny how our society can think that breastfed babies will somehow be deficient in something, iron, vitamin D, calcium, whatever it may be– when human milk changes in composition for the needs of your specific baby… it almost seems impossible to me that the baby could be deficient in anything when exclusively breastfed.
The only thing I have heard of really, that can lead to a breastfed baby being low in iron, has to do with when the baby is fed both breastmilk and formula. Breastmilk has far less iron than commercial formulas, because the iron in breastmilk is extremely bio-available, but the iron in formula is not and is quite hard for the baby to break down, so formula is fortified with lots and lots of it, so that the baby can digest enough of it to have good iron levels.
Sometimes when a baby is formula and breastmilk fed, the iron in the formula mixes with the iron in the breastmilk, making it hard for the baby to get either (I don’t know exactly the science of why this happens but it’s documented). So a baby that has had both regularly and then is weaned before a year can be at risk for low iron.
But Ada has not ever had any formula, so I was not surprised at all that her tests came back good. She’s perfect! Just a little gluten intolerant and small, but we can deal with that!