enfamil

Stop it Enfamil. Right Now.

Recently, a friend of mine forwarded me an email she received from Enfamil.  Now let me be clear: This friend is a breastfeeding mom.  She’s never purchased formula.  She’s never signed up to receive emails from formula companies.  She’s never received any emails before now.

Here’s what appeared in her inbox:

There is so much wrong with this email that it’s hard to know where to start.  It is so carefully crafted and timed so precisely to drive women away from breastfeeding and onto formula.  Let’s break it down piece-by-piece.

 Perhaps you’re getting closet to a time when you’ll be going back to work. Or maybe you’re doing a bit more outside the house these days – like getting some exercise or running a few errands.

As carefully timed as this email is, it likely will coincide with a mom returning to work.  The US has pitiful provisions for maternity leave, so many moms have to go back to work at around six weeks.  Additionally, by this time, many moms have reached a point in their postpartum recovery that they would be feeling self-conscious about the way their bodies have changed post-baby.  They may feel like they want to get out more and more.

They go on to say,

This could be a good time to supplement with Enfamil. Supplementing gives you added flexibility and also allows other family members or caregivers to feed the baby when you’re not there.

Let me just stop you right there, Enfamil.  Breastfeeding does not shackle you to the couch.  It doesn’t prevent you from exercising.  It doesn’t prevent you from returning to work.

Here’s the thing that’s weird about this.  They talk about all of this needed flexibility.  So why don’t they mention breast pumps?  Not one single mention of expressing milk.  No mention of breastfeeding in public which most of us do on a regular basis, either. Remember folks.  This wasn’t an email targeted to a bottle-feeding mom.  This wasn’t an email targeted to a mom who reached out asking for this information.  This was targeted at a breastfeeding mother who, at seven weeks, has an established breastfeeding relationship.

Let’s read a little further in this email.

[Blah blah blah, Enfamil is so great and awesome.]  Thinking of a time when you’ll switch to formula entirely? Check out our tips for weaning your baby.

Notice the wording here.  They don’t say, “Thinking of switching to formula entirely?”  They don’t say, “Are you thinking you might switch to formula entirely?”

No.

They say,

Thinking of a time when you’ll switch to formula entirely.

When you will switch to formula entirely.  Will.  Not might. Not thinking of.  Will.  As if this is the regular course of action. As if it’s what’s done.  You nurse for six weeks, supplement a bit longer and eventually wean entirely over to formula. It’s normal. It’s what everyone does.  Why wouldn’t you?  It’s not like there are no alternatives, right?

Alternatives like maybe breast pumps.  Hand expression. Nursing in public. Federal laws protecting mothers’ right to express milk during the work day.

They go on to provide some very “helpful” links.  Here’s what they have to say about supplementing.

Enfamil’s “helpful” guide to supplementation.

The very top section says,

 If you’re weighing the decision to supplement your baby’s diet with formula – for extra nutrition, back-to-work flexibility, or to give dad and other caregivers a hand in feeding…

Excuse me?  Extra nutrition?  Is Enfamil really going there?  Let me be very clear.  Breastmilk is the perfect food for a baby.  No extra nutrition required, thankyouverymuch. 

But good on Enfamil for preying on a mom who might be feeling stressed and inadequate if she didn’t know that the six-week growth spurt was coming.  When that baby nurses and nurses all day long, plenty of moms think their milk is drying up.  Unless they’ve got a good support network built, they may not realize that this is completely normal infant behavior that only lasts a week.  Remember what I said earlier about how carefully timed this email is?

She may also not realize that bottles of breastmilk don’t need to have more than a few ounces.  She may be using the common formula method for calculating bottle size instead of just figuring on 1 ounce of milk per hour.  She may be fresh back to work and looking at the huge 6 oz bottles that formula fed babies are getting and feeling like she can’t produce enough milk to feed her baby.  Extra nutrition indeed.   Well played, Enfamil.

Also, let’s not forget, breast pumps are available and, while not cheap, they’re far less expensive than formula.  Only the briefest mention of that here, though, and only as a stepping stone to prepare a baby to receive formula.

We read several times in this article how Enfamil’s formula is “patterend after breastmilk.”  They emphasize how “low” breastmilk is in Vitamin D (Uh, really?) and how great the DHA and ARA in formula are.  There is so much wrong with this page that it’s hard to know where to start. 

Let’s also have a peek at Enfamil’s kind-hearted tips for weaning your child entirely onto formula.

 

 Again, it starts bad right at the top:

1. Know when to say wean.  Sometimes babies lose interest in breastfeeding on their own when things like walking steal their interest.

Okay, really?  They say walking could steal their interest, but right around this time, many babies realize they’re no longer inside Mama’s womb.  They become interested in the world around them.  Then at four months, BAM!  Distractibility hits.  This is biologically normal.  Every baby does this.  It’s simply part of the natural course of breastfeeding.  This doesn’t mean a baby is weaning. 

Check out this article from Kellymom.com: Do babies under 12 months self-wean?

At no point does this article reference the WHO recommendations for breastfeeding duration:

Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended up to 6 months of age, with continued breastfeeding along with appropriate complementary foods up to two years of age or beyond.

At no point do they reference the AAP recommendation to breastfeeding duration:

In the policy statement, “Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk,” published in the March 2012 issue of Pediatrics (published online Feb. 27), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) reaffirms its recommendation of exclusive breastfeeding for about the first six months of a baby’s life, followed by breastfeeding in combination with the introduction of complementary foods until at least 12 months of age, and continuation of breastfeeding for as long as mutually desired by mother and baby.

At no point do they mention the financial cost of formula.  Or the very real risks that can be associated with formula.

Let me be very clear.  Formula is not poison.  Formula can be a medical necessity and a life-saver.  Moms who feed formula are not bad moms.  Gabi required formula supplementation during the first few weeks of her life because of the side effects of pitocin I received during labor and lack of breastfeeding support available to us.  This post is not about that.

This post is about a company that is using half-truths, misinformation, and predatory tactics to market its product at the cost of the health of babies and mamas.  This is unacceptable.

Stop it Enfamil.  Stop preying on the insecurities of breastfeeding moms.  Stop.  Right now.  Stop with your “breastfeeding support” emails, hotlines, and websites.  Stop trying to get into the middle of the relationships we have built with our babies.  Stop lining your CEO’s wallets at the cost of our children’s health.  Stop putting the almighty dollar over the well-being of our babies.  Stop right now.

We don’t want what you’re selling.

 

 

Update: This post has gotten way more of a response than I expected.  I’m not the only one mad about this. Please take a moment to tell Enfamil to stop this kind of marketing.  Tell them on their facebook page or tweet at them using #stopitenfamil as your hashtag.  Call them.  Email them.  Make your voice heard!

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80 thoughts on “Stop it Enfamil. Right Now.”

  1. Umm… None of my babies (3 of them) ever lost interest in feeding. Just throwing that out there. They’d sometimes take breaks to look around, but would never relinquish a death grip on the boob…

    1. Get a grip. They have to market their product. Its called advertising…they have to make money just as you would if you needed to sell a product.Its the moms choice to do what she wants if you dont like the email delete it. Why do bf moms get so worked up about EVERYTHING. Its not your business what the population of the world chooses to do. Just feed your baby how you feel is best and stay oiut of everyone’s business…although it seems impossible.ive bf my baby for 11 months and counting and would never tell anyone how to feed their child.

      1. I’m certain you will see that I have not told anyone how to feed their children. Companies market, yes, but there are international statutes regulating how formula company may and may not market their products. Enfamil is in violation of these, as are most formulas. I’m sure we can agree that a company is allowed to sell its product, but a company should not lie to consumers and jeopardize public health in order to do so,

  2. I received this exact same thing in the mail complete with samples about 2 weeks before I returned to work. At a time when I was FREAKING out about keeping up with my son’s needs while pumping. (Our daycare had already told me that I wouldn’t be able to because ‘most of their mom’s can’t’). I had almost an identical conversation with my husband as your blog post. ‘How do they know I’m going back to work soon? Why are they making me feel even more stressed that I won’t be able to keep up? I better hang on to these coupons and samples because I obviously won’t be able to… and so on’ There’s really no point to my comment other than to say it CAN be done! I’m pumping at work right now, I’m luck to have a very supportive work place and for that I am thankful! :)

    1. That makes me absolutely sick that they mailed you samples, too. In your mailing did they even once mention pumping at work? I’m so sorry you went through that, but I am thrilled that you are pumping at work and continuing to provide milk for your baby.

  3. So delete the email. Give away/donate the samples. Why take so much offense to this? It’s just an email. I’m a breastfeeding mom, pumping at work, never gave my baby formula. I’m fortunate I never had to. I don’t think a simple email from Enfamil would have detered me from doing what I want to do for my baby. I get samples in the mail too but I don’t use them. Why would I let it upset me?

    1. Because of the millions of new mothers unresearched in breastfeeding with little or no support who may be struggling with the very early days of breastfeeding or who may simply believe early weaning is normal, recommended and beneficial as this e-mail suggests to them it is. This e-mail is EXACTLY why the WHO has a code against advertising and promotion of infant formula.

    2. You see, though, this information isn’t coming to moms in a vacuum. I would recommend reading Jessica’s comment above. Like many moms, she received this mailing at a time when she was feeling particularly vulnerable. She had both internal and external pressure on her trying to tell her that she wouldn’t be able to express enough milk at work. She’s not alone. I run a Breastfeeding Support group at a Fortune 500 company, and I frequently work with moms who are facing self-doubt and fear that they will not be able to provide enough for their babies. The World Health Organization created the International Code for the Marketing of Breastmilk Substitues (WHO Code) for a reason. If this type of thing didn’t cause real harm, they wouldn’t have spent time crafting that policy.

  4. I receive these emails, as well, even though I had always planned and have been exclusively BF. I assume they got my info through the maternity store that I gave an email address to. My doctor’s office gave me many samples, Similac and Enfamil SENT me decent size canisters in the mail, and I regularly receive coupons from both companies. All unsolicited. I have kept the formula and coupons as I don’t want to waste them and have passed them along to friends using formula. It hasn’t swayed my decision, but I can see how it could for others. Thankfully, there are many pro-breastfeeding sites out there that can counteract them. Unfortunately, they don’t have the marketing funds to reach more women in the same way.

  5. As a mom who breastfed not nearly as long as I wanted, I still had the option of using donated breastmilk when I could not produce enough on my own. I fed my last baby for 7 months- and of that I pumped exclusivley for 6 of those months. No, it was not easy or the way I planned, but I was able to give her my milk for those 7 months. After that, I had 5 selfless wonderful moms who breastfed their baby PLUS pumped milk for mine. Nothing is more perfect or natural than breastmilk. I am do happy that I was able to give my daughter the best for the first year of her life. I would have continued giving her breastmilk beyond her first year, but there are other children who needed breastmilk more than my daughter, and it would have been selfish of me to take from the other babies that needed it at that point. A huge thank you to all moms who choose to breastfeed and those who pump for babies other their own.

      1. Just thought I would leave a bit of info for those moms who want to look into milksharing. Either to donate or to get milk: milkshare.com, and 2 facebook pages: eats on feets and human milk for human babies (HMFHB)- and these are location specific- so you can hopefully find milk close to home. Just remember that milk banks profit from donated milk by selling it back to parents in need for around $5/oz. yes, $5 an ounce! Unless your last name is Rockafeller, who can afford to pay that?

      2. Thanks so much for posting about these groups! I participate in informal milksharing. I appreciate that the big banks help NICU patients, but I also see the need to continue helping those babies when they are able to go home with their parents. I’m both proud and humbled by the fact that my milk has gone to help two children, the first an adopted baby who could not tolerate any type of formula and the second a micropreemie who needed human milk for optimal growth.

  6. Ugh, preying on the uncertainty that the past half-century of formula feeding has left with us with. And, like any good marketing campaign, they don’t even mention the alternatives, even to dismiss them. Disgusting.

  7. As a first time mom at the tender age of 22, when I had problems with my newborn latching after coming home from the hospital, I reached for the cupboard where I had stored two cans of formula I had received in the mail about two months earlier. When I got them in the mail, I was confused about how this formula company even knew I was pregnant, but figured it was best to be prepared “just in case.” Well, my patience was short and I knew I could get a few extra hours of sleep if I gave my baby formula, so it wasn’t long before she was completely on bottles. I wish with all my heart that #1 I never got formula in the mail, and #2, didn’t hang on to the stuff. It sabotaged my efforts to nurse my first baby. I had lost confidence that I could do it before the baby was even born. Baby number 2 was a little better… I lasted a month.. and now with baby number three coming, I am determined more than ever to resist these formula companies. They do not have my babies health in mind.. only money… and I’m so ashamed to say I’ve been lining the pockets of these companies for two years now. :-(

    1. I am so, so sorry that these marketing practices caused real harm to your breastfeeding relationship with your children. I definitely recommend that you surround yourself with mother-to-mother support and professional support. If you don’t have local resources available the Kellymom.com website and forums are phenomenal.

    2. I just wanted to say that I shared this with the breastfeeding coalition/baby friendly hospital initiative group that I am a part of. As a nurse in OB/Gyn and very much a lactivist, I am appalled at the insidious (to say the vdry least) tactics being implemented by formula companies. It’s sickening and heartbreaking.

      I am also an “experienced” breastfeeding mom. three down for more than 1 year and 1 more going strong. For more absolutely spectacular support, please see the following facebook pages:

      Respect the Breast

      The Leaky B@@b

      The Badass Breastfeeder, and

      You Can Breastfeed Here

      The administrators and the members are nothing short of extraordinary!

      I reposted this to all of the aforementioned pages too! :-)

      1. Thank you so much for sharing my article and for the kind words. Without communities like the ones you list (for me it was the kellymom.com forums), I don’t think I would have been able to muddle through the onslaught of misinformation being tossed my way by formula manufacturers.

  8. of course they aren’t going to tout alternatives to their formula… they are selling a product not raising your child. All they want is your money. They don’t care about breast pumps or Similac or anything other than selling more Enfamil. If you fit the criteria for their direct emailing, then they would be doing their product and their company a disservice by not targeting you or by sharing other information that might steer you away from Enfamil.

    I don’t get the outrage. This is done by every company. Every product is sold as being better than the alternatives. They aren’t trying to be deceptive, they are simply plugging their product as being better, more nutritious, and more convenient. Every company does this regardless of whether the claims are true… so why all the outrageous outrage over tactics that are so commonplace in advertising that they are easily recognizable and obviously designed to move merchandise? It’s not like their advertising strategy is deceitful or nefarious.

    1. Should we really hold up “everyone is doing it” as the moral standard for corporations? These practices cause real and measurable harm to babies across the world. That’s the outrage. If they were marketing their product as better than another brand of formula, that would be slightly different. But they’re not. They’re comparing their product to breastmilk and breastfeeding in misleading and insidious ways.

      The WHO Code exists for a reason.

  9. I have never used formula for any of my 4 kids, and last month (when my youngest was 16 months old) I got 2 FULL SIZE containers of formula in the mail FROM ENFAMIL!

  10. That makes me sick! Way to sabatoge something so amazing and special that a mom is giving to her baby. I’ve been breast feeding a year and a half. Not one drop of any other type of milk has been given to my baby. I have exercized, ran errands, even went away for 4 days when my son was 13 months all while breastfeeding. I made the effort to keep doing it because I know it is best for my body and my baby. I work 3 days a week and just recently stopped pumping at work as my son no longer needs me to. I feel breastfeeding is WAY more convenient than any other type of feeding. When I was away I would have to wash bottles when I came home. Who wants to do that?!

  11. I got an email just like this too and I can say that it made me work harder to make sure I would never have to give my son that yucky stuff! I have had to exclusively pump since he was born ( 6 months ago, yay!) due to latch problems and it has been the hardest thing I have ever done. When I got this email I was pumping 9 times a day and feeding my son 8 times a day and I was tired ( no sleep), hungry (no time for real food), and had a general feeling of ick (hygiene, ha!). If I hadn’t had such a great support system I may have caved. This is such a vulnerable time and I don’t think it’s fair to target people. I understand that these are companies who want to make money but I wish they understood what it felt like to be a mother who desperately wants to nurse and is having a difficult time.

    ** I’m proud to say that I have been pumping for six months and not only has my son not received any supplementation, but I also have a pretty impressive stash of frozen milk!!

    1. I forgot to add that about the same time I received the email I took my son to a check-up and the doctor told me I’d never be able to exclusively pump for him for a year. We didn’t see her again but I may drop by her office in six months for a little chat!

  12. I was happy to see your post. I have a 4-week old and received a mailing from enfamil yesterday that says “How common are feeding issues?” Inside proceeds to explain that enfamil solutions help ease common feeding issues while providing the complete nourishment your baby needs for healthy development. Included were 2, $5.00 coupons with my name on them.

    I have no judgment against mommas who use formula, to each their own. But I do not appreciate them sending these targeted mailings to mommas like myself who want to exclusively breastfeeding, but are still waiting for it to get easier.

  13. Marketing folks are doing what they do best and paid to do. They are paid by Enfamil so they need to push the product. Providing alternatives is not their job. Which brings me to the point that perhaps bfing needs some marketing savvy to educate (new) parents, contrary to popular misconception, how easy and convenient breastfeeding can be.

    1. Corporations like Enfamil have an ethical responsibility to ensure that their marketing arms are not creating campaigns that cause harm. Marketing companies have an ethical responsibility to not endanger public health (the AAP classes breastfeeding as a public health issue and not a lifestyle choice) with their marketing campaigns.

      Unfortunately, the breastfeeding community is not a single entity like Enfamil (or Similac or others) and we, as a collective, don’t have the millions of dollars available to counter such ads as these. I wish we did. What I wish more, though, was that corporations would stop abdicating their ethical responsibility in favor of increasing profits.

    2. Tam, there are MANY of us who ARE working to educate new parents… but we simply don’t have the dollars behind us to support our efforts outside of grassroots actions – we work on facebook, twitter, blogs… but who can afford the big flashy websites and all the leads that they purchase, and the big email campaigns??? Certainly not me, that’s for sure.

  14. Just shared this on our page. As a rule, I try very hard to stay on message (breastfeeding in public), and don’t post much about formula or formula campaigns. However, since one of the primary arguments of this insidious email is the idea that a nursing mom can’t leave the house without formula, it seemed appropriate for me to share. Thank you for calling Enfamil out on out such a predatory campaign. http://www.facebook.com/youcanbreastfeedhere/posts/492983220715780 ~ Carrie

    1. Thank you so much for sharing. I was floored by the notion that breastfeeding would prevent a mom from getting out and about. You wouldn’t believe the places I’ve nursed! It’s really not a big deal. So glad you pointed me to your page! I can’t wait to head over and read more.

  15. Omg ok my son may want to see what’s around him but when he’s hungry and not just looking for a “snack” NOTHING takes him from the boob. I nurse in public ALL the time and no NOT find it inconvenient at all. It was the same with my daughter who nursed for 23 months.

  16. Excellent article, Molly, as always! You are such a good writer.

    I have heard about this formula-pushing, but I’ve never gotten any of it – in the mail, or samples, or emails. I wonder why! Is it because I never register anywhere? One way or the other, I’m thankful to be left out of this. Breastfeeding is SO DIFFICULT for many mothers, especially first-time mothers, and it is SO easy to sabotage because there is so much fear and love wrapped up in the breastfeeding relationship. If I had not been surrounded by BF-supportive family, friends, and caregivers, our first (or second) could easily have been a formula baby. Thankfully, when I had problems, I was told, “You’re having problems, so let’s work together to fix this” rather than having been given formula. Nursing mothers are easy prey for formula companies.

    Keep up the good work!!!

  17. To people who think that this should be taken lying down and that you can’t expect ethical advertising from formula companies, here is an advert for follow-on milk (ie, formula to be used 6 months on; they’re not even allowed advertise breast milk replacement for the 0-6 month group) in Ireland, where the WHO code is in place: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XPno21o2vE

  18. Wow. The photograph in the email is so well-crafted to manipulate… check out the position of mom & baby in a nice cozy BFing position… Hell, it looks like the bottle is growing straight from the mom’s breast. Brilliant marketing indeed.

  19. My daughter was born 4 weeks early and did not have the want to suck swallow and breathe like other full term babies. I, too, received samples in the mail and after 3 weeks of pumping and her refusing to patch I went to those samples as an easy alternative to breast feeding or going to support groups that I thought would take up too much time and not help anyway. She was brought up strictly formula, but is still vEry healthy. However I just gave birth 7.16 to a baby born 7 weeks early and he’s already latching on wit help from lactation. So far he has only had my milk and it has been the most incredible experience to nurse him while he is on the
    NICU an know he is getting everything he needs to grow big and strong. I wish I had tried groups and support systems with my daughter because now I see it’s not impossible. I haven’t received any samples this baby but many many coupons that I pass along to formula using moms. I agree, their tactics are shameless and place weight on new mothers shoulders that is not only unsolicited but can only make matters of post partum worse if the mom already feels inadequate! Thank you for your passion about this and opening eyes to new mommies!

  20. I think at times you breast-feeders can be very offensive to those that are not. You should take that as food for thought………… and don’t tell me your not being offensive as you are.

  21. To me, that statement about exercise in the first email is the most insidious. Sadly, I don’t know any new mom who hasn’t beat herself up about getting back into shape and that statement subtly but very effectively plays on that guilt and self-conciousness.

    That aside, the main point I want to make is about my experience with formula marketing, which is quite different from the above. I started receiving unsolicited samples from Nestle Good Start formula even before my son was born. As a communications and public relations professional myself, I’m always interested in how companies craft their messages and I was impressed with Nestle. The marketing materials I read all started with a statement along the lines of “Breastfeeding is best but if you want/need to use formula…” Also, a lot of the materials weren’t even about formula per se, they were about developmental stages, introducing solid foods (of course Nestle also sells baby food), and other parenting topics. I had no problem at all with this marketing method.

    I should note that I am writing from Canada. I checked both Enfamil’s and Nestle’s Canadian websites and found statements about breastfeeding on their home pages. Nestle’s Canadian website starts with the statement “When it comes to feeding your baby, breast milk is the ideal choice.” Enfamil’s Canadian website states “Breast milk is the optimal nutrition for your baby. It is the gold standard by which we design our formulas:” Based on this, I’m guessing that there’s different legislation here that requires formula marketers to make positive statements about breastfeeding. It’s sad that this is something a government needs to spend time regulating but it seems necessary based on the conversation taking place here.

    However,it seems like some companies also police themselves; rooting around on Nestle’s US website, I found their Infant Formula Policy which guides their marketing. It starts with this statement: “Breastfeeding is best for babies. Henri Nestlé stated this soon after founding our company in 1867. This principle still forms the cornerstone of our Infant Formula Marketing Policy.” So, there you have it, formula marketing can be done with integrity; unfortunately it isn’t always.

    By the way, I do NOT work for Nestle.

    1. Karen, the entire notion of “breast is best” is incredibly problematic, and I am careful to never fall into the trap of using that terminology. I would encourage you to read “Watch Your Language” an essay by Diane Wiessinger, MS, IBCLC.

      Additionally, I find it odd to use Nestle as an example of a company that markets its formula with integrity. They’re one of the most eggrigious violators of the WHO Code. Their marketing practices are directly responsible for the deaths of thousands of infants in third world countries. Here’s an article from Annie at PhD in Parenting that discusses Nestle and their issues in more detail:
      http://www.phdinparenting.com/2010/08/02/nestle/

      I’m a second generation Nestle boycotter.

      I will not be satisfied until formula manufacturers start following the guidelines laid out to them by the WHO.

  22. Just shared on my FB wall and commented on theirs. Frankly, not only am I appalled by this email, am I also with the amount of women on that page who are pregnant with their first child and are already asking for coupons. This makes me angry and further proves that these IDIOTIC big formula companies should only be catered to for mothers as a LAST RESORT. SO upset right now!!!

  23. I understand that for some families, formula is a life saver, literally. But to prey on the hormones of new mothers is shameful! I can go on for hours about, but I will spare you my rant and just sat thank you. Thank you for saying what so many other moms need to hear. And thank you for standing your ground against the candy manufacturers who claim to be smarter than the human body. Thank you.

  24. The Modus Operandi of Mead-Johnson continues unabated, as it does with other artificial milk manufacturers. And their extremely well-funded marketing research over the last several decades has allowed them to reach a level of finesse almost unrealized by other companies. This kind of marketing approach lead to Naomi Baumslag and Dia Michels publish the first-of-its-kind book, “Milk, Money, and Madness” in 1995! It’s great seeing the moms of this generation fighting against this, because it’s a constant battle in this country!

  25. Lmao so I guess all breastfeeding mothers can be brainwashed via email?? Who really takes time out of their day to pick apart an enfamil email? Such a waste of time. You must be extremely bored..

    1. Agreed! And breastfeeding DOES have better marketing than formula – your doctor. Ask questions. If you’re not asking the questions, you’re doing yourself and your baby a disservice. The WHO code doesn’t regulate advertising, it simply discusses the implications on an uneducated mother. If you are ignorant when it comes to feeding your child, maybe you deserve to be brainwashed by an email. But it’s simple, really, if you know you aren’t going to use formula, just delete the email from enfamil or similac or any other formula before you read it. LOW STRESS!

  26. This thought just popped in my mind yesterday when I was reading some stories of mom’s who stopped breastfeeding because they had continuing issues and I just wanted to throw it out here and hear what you think or if you know any resources or research on this topic? Here is what I think:Lot of moms who stop breastfeeding early (before 1 year, often even before 6 months) had extremely fussy babies or babies who had a lot of gas (that didn’t get better by changing the typical things such as cutting out diary etc). Some also wrote that for the mother it was not a bonding experience because of all the issues and the constant struggle with breastfeeding. So I am wondering if maybe all the crap of fast food and processed foods that are basically everywhere around us somehow mess with our milk. I am talking about our nutrition as a whole, not one specific thing or ingredient. There is so much wrong with the way we eat as a society, it would actually be surprising if it didn’t effect breast milk. I still believe it’s the best nutrition for our babies, since formula already is again processed and just starts the little ones right out on the wrong nutritional path of our society. It would be interesting to see what would happen to some of those breastfeeding issues if we start eating more and more natural foods, least processed. The only problem with it is that it’s not a quick fix. Some of the crap takes up to 2 months to exit our system. I remember that many breastfeeding researches showed that in non-western society (developing countries) colic in babies is unheard of and usually they don’t eat all the crap we do. Any thoughts?

  27. Comeback: After six months, breastmilk still contains protein, fat, and other nutritionally vital components. Breastmilk still contains immunologic factors that help protect the baby. In fact, some immune factors in breastmilk that protect the baby against infection increase as the child gets older. If my baby becomes unwell, breastmilk is easily digested and nourishing. Also if my baby becomes a fussy eater, my breastmilk will make an important contribution to his restricted diet – it may become his only decent source of vitamins! As babies cannot digest cow’s milk, if I were to stop breastfeeding now I would have to switch to formula at least until my baby is a year old. Why would I want to have the extra cost and hassle of that?

  28. Sounds like your doctor has sadly not educated herself about breastfeeding at ALL. The nutritional value doesn’t magically go away at 3 months or 6 months or a year. As long as you breastfeed your milk will tailor itself to meet your baby’s needs. For example, a mother who breastfeeds a toddler produces milk with more protein than when baby was a newborn because the little one has different nutritional needs at that stage. Breast milk really is amazing stuff! Since your Doctor doesn’t appear to know what she’s talking about (and probably got most of her breastfeeding relalted “knowledge” from a formula company rep) I would suggest you contact your local LLL or get a good book by someone who knows what they’re talking about such as Dr. Jack Newman or LLL.

  29. I totally would have fallen for this email had I gotten it back when I first started out- it really is worded well. To feed on the fear that I’m not providing enough for my baby. I ended up switching to formula full time at the six month mark when my milk finally gave out- no amount of fenugreek or pumping helped.

    I admit that I probably let myself go due to not being vigilent about pumping. Due to a combination of a lack of resources on my end and not researching more thoroughly, I didn’t know about the 1 oz per hour seperated thing until well after I gave up. I succumbed to the belief that I simply wasn’t making enough milk. And ever since, I’ve always felt guilt for giving up.

    I know better now and intend to breast feed for much longer with number two.

  30. First this is from a lactation consultant. Stop reading too far. She says you can mix your breast milk with prepared formula you just don’t want to because it can waste your precious milk. She says not to mix the breastmilk with powder alone because of the calorie intake…take notice just about everyone who disagreed with that was because they were working with a specific doctor because the baby had a specific issue and needed to gain extra wait to catch up. I believe she is just speaking about in general. if your baby has a special situation of course you are going to follow the doctors orders. Stope coming down so hard on the consulatnt. Afterall she is a lactation consultant. Her specialty is feeding your baby breastmilk. There are special instrances and you should stop discrediting the consultant.

  31. A liitle late to this conversation, but it is too important of a suject for me. I too received emails, coupons and full sized formula containers. My mom and sister both stopped after just weeks of brestfeeding were both convinced I’d “dry up” after only weeks also, and encouraged me to keep the coupons and samples. Me being as stubborn as I am, set out to prove that I could and would breastfeed. (The same stubbornness that led to me giving birth naturally to a footling breach baby IN A HOSPITAL) Anyways, I donated the Simalac and Enfamil and threw out the Good Start before it even came into my home. My milk came in fast and strong when my daughter was only 18 hours old, and it continued to be fast and strong till she was nearly 18 months. (I even had to hold a cup under one side while she was on the other, and had to pump a little afterwards just to stop the milk.) I ended up donating some of my milk, as well.

    Being pressured by media and family to not do what I knew was best for my daughter was discouraging, but thankfully my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and some great midwife friends were there to encourage me.

    While I am grateful that there are alternatives to brestfeeding in emergency situations, I believe it should be marketed as such- an emergency solution. And please, mommas like me, with milk to spare, please look into donating your milk!

    1. Hi Rachel! I was also a milk donor! Since my supply has regulated, all I pump goes to my own daughter now, but it was inspiring to see those mamas working so hard to make sure their babies got breastmilk for the first year!

  32. I did exactly that – called Enfamil! They sent my pregnant daughter who was breastfed back in the 1970’s and ’80’s not one, but two freebie packs! I told them they were in violation of Article 5 of the WHO Code and I demanded to know how they got her name and address. At first they said they didn’t know then changed their story to “we’ll tell her if she calls is.” We figured out it was Motherhood shops where she signed a sheet.

  33. I really think it’s ridiculous to get worked up about marketing. It’s part of our society and you can choose to do what you want with it. I breastfed for a few months then switched to formula and it’s nice someone actually doesn’t make you feel guilty. To be honest, I think the nurses at the hospital and certain people around me made me feel horrible I didn’t want to continue breast feeding. How is that any better?

    1. I disagree with the notion you seem to put forth that there should be no limits to marketing. As does the WHO who makes it clear that they way formula is marketed toward breastfeeding mothers is dangerous and unacceptable. Enfamil, if they must market, should stick with formula feeding moms and get their noses out of the relationship between breastfeeding moms and babies.

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