Author: Rachel Ann Garcia-Tan, MSN, AGACNP-BC
Breast Feeding has been a struggle for some mothers including those first-time moms. The dilemma of learning how to breastfeed and adapting to your new role as a mother plays a big key in your wellbeing, maternal strengths, and resilience. It is a special period in the life of a woman and her baby. The nutrition of women during this period is still surrounded by tons of myths and hearsay that have been passed down from one generation to another. This is the most challenging part of the post-partum period for some moms. During breastfeeding, nutrition is crucial, and it is important to follow certain eating habits, however, this should not be associated with any constraints, sacrifices, and anxiety (Lewicka, 2019). Water and hydration are essential components in promoting the metabolic activities of the body through its improvement of cell volume homeostasis (McKenzie & Armstrong, 2017). Breast milk is recommended as the number one source of nutrients for infants from 0 to 6 months, it comprises several metabolic nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that have a long-term result on physical, mental, and immune system development (Nguyen et al., 2020). According to Nguyen et al. (2020), among this important mixture, vitamins have an essential role in the proper growth and development of infants. Water soluble vitamins such as B-complex is a co-enzyme of abundant biochemical reactions and has distinct functions in the human body (Nguyen et al., 2020). It is also said that the number of vitamins in human milk plays a big role in infant health and development, with a deficiency in vitamins can lead to infants’ inharmonious development, diseases, and even cause death (Nguyen et al., 2020).
This paper aims to promote hydration with add-on vitamins to all the mothers who are in their lactation period. Being a mom of two pushed me to work hard and provide the best for my family. Las Vegas Nevada, which is also known to be a “Sin City” has a very diverse population and when they hear about IV hydration therapy, many people will think that this therapy is only a cure for hang-over. On the contrary, intravenous therapy has proved to show a lot of benefits. This past pandemic, IV hydration therapy provided a wide variety of assistance for all covid patients by boosting their immunity with a high dose of vitamin C and some other antioxidants. Postpartum, breastfeeding women experienced many challenges by additional water loss through breast milk production measuring 700ml per day (McKenzie et al., 2017). And because of this hydration is a vital component in lactating mothers. In addition, the dietary intake of breastfeeding mothers has a significant impact on their infant and maternal well-being (Bardosono et al., 2017). Research suggests that insufficient maternal nutrients may lead to “reprogramming” that can lead the infant to chronic illnesses in adulthood (Bardosono et al., 2017). Based on European Food Safety Authority, a breastfeeding mother should increase their total water intake to 700ml/day to support the water loss through breast milk (Bardosono et al., 2017). This study was supported by The Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) that a total water intake for a breastfeeding mother should be 3,800ml/day (Bardosono et al., 2017).
Original model prepared by authors from evidence reported by Dewey et al. (2003)
(Perez-Escamilla et al., 2019)
Women who report insufficient breast milk are common and are associated with delayed onset of lactation. Some risk factors include maternal stress, maternal obesity, and in-hospital formula supplementation (Perez-Escamilla et al., 2019). The above figure showed how lack of access to lactation support can lead to self-reported insufficient milk. Intravenous hydration is not very common among breastfeeding mothers, for the fact that several medications are off-label. Mothers who are lactating require enough vitamins and hydration to overcome the 800ml water loss. Because of this, I was motivated to formulate my own IV Hydration Drip for breastfeeding mothers. The BF Drip comprises Vitamin B-complex that is essential in human body function, this vitamin is water soluble and easily excreted in the body through urination, regular and appropriate intake is important to produce energy, DNA/RNA synthesis, genomic and non-genomic methylation, and many more (Empower Pharmacy, 2022). B-complex is also safe in pregnancy and breastfeeding mothers, it passes through breast milk to the infant (Empower Pharmacy, 2022).
Another essential vitamin is Ascorbic acid, Vitamin C is delivered into breast milk (Empower Pharmacy, 2022). The use of this vitamin is recommended for lactating women and is publicly safe (Empower Pharmacy, 2022). Lastly, Biotin is vital for the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and amino acids. It is found mainly in the liver, kidney, and muscle, breastfeeding mothers may consume biotin within the recommended adequate intake (Empower Pharmacy, 2022). However, supplementation is not necessary if a healthy diet is consumed and no deficiency has been diagnosed (Empower Pharmacy, 2022). For this reason, a low dose of Biotin has been added to our Breast-Feeding Hydration Drip. All these vitamins are incorporated in 1L normal saline to aid in hydration for lactating moms.
To conclude, hydration is vital and helpful to promote energy, a healthy lifestyle, and the well-being of lactating mothers. It is still advisable to talk to your Obstetrician for a proper recommendation regarding hydration. Breast Feeding Hydration Drip doesn’t intend to replace the regular hydration process of a human being but to aid in providing the extra nutrients that lactating mothers can get.
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Empower Pharmacy. (2022). Ascorbic Acid Injection. https://www.empowerpharmacy.com/drugs/ascorbic-acid-injection
Empower Pharmacy. (2022). B-Complex Injection. https://www.empowerpharmacy.com/drugs/b- complex-injection
Empower Pharmacy. (2022). Biotin Injection. https://www.empowerpharmacy.com/drugs/biotin- injection
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Perez-Escamilla, R., Buccini, G., Segura-Perez, S., and Piwoz, E. (2019). Perspective: Should Exclusive breastfeeding still be recommended for 6 months? Advances in Nutrition, 10(6), 931-943. https://doi.org/10.1093/advances/nmz039