Nutritionists have dismissed the myth by many mothers that it is dangerous to continue breastfeeding after a mother conceives. Dr Elizabeth Madraa, a nutritionist says it is entrenched in most mothers that once a woman conceives, she stops breastfeeding her lactating baby claiming that the breast milk is now poisonous.
26 year old Florence Nalunkuuma weaned her one year old daughter at the age of two months as soon as she got pregnant.
Dr Elizabeth Madraa, a nutritionist says it is entrenched in most mothers that once a woman conceives, she stops breastfeeding her lactating baby claiming that the breast milk is now poisonous.
She says this is common with mothers who do not practice proper family planning and conceive when their babies are nine months old.
//Cue in: By the age of nine months…”
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Nalunkuuma argues that she weaned her baby to prevent her from getting what is locally known as Bwosi or malnutrition. This was compounded by the child’s malarial infection and when she was injected with Quinine, she was immediately stopped from stopped breastfeeding.
A nurse at Mwanamugimu nutrition unit says many mothers come with malnourished children because of the myths told to them by their older female relatives. The nurse who could not be named revealed that some mothers stop breast feeding after going for burial for a few days.
Some claim that if their child regurgitates and the milk pours on the ground, the child will die if they are breast fed again.
Dr. Hanifa Namusoke, a senior nutritionist at Mwanamugimu nutrition unit in Mulago, says there is no biological reason as to why mothers should wean their babies. She advises the pregnant and breastfeeding mothers to increase her nutrients intake to cater for the three of them.
She clarifies that when a woman is pregnant; the breast milk nutrients will not be enough because the priorities go to the fetus, but a mother can proceed until she is in labour.
//Cue in: It has no poison at all…”
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Dr. Namusoke advises intake of proteins including animal foods like milk, meat, and plant foods such as beans, peas and ground nuts to improve tissue growth.
Others include oils and vegetables which are fortified such as Mukwano and Ufuta oils, drinking enough clean water and resting.
//Cue in: To eat all the food groups..
Cue out:…take water, rest.
Dr. Namusoke, however, says it is better for mothers to also rotate the foods depending on where they are grown considering the soil variations in different parts of the country.