Alcohol & Breastfeeding

Let me begin by saying, never-ever should you feel pressured to consume alcohol. Whether you’re pregnant, breastfeeding or simply don’t drink alcohol, you be you!

If you are considering or concerned about having that red wine at dinner this holiday season, here’s some facts to sip on🍷

✨ Hops and barley may have the ability to increase serum prolactin, the hormone responsible for milk production

 ➡️However alcohol can also play a negative role in allowing your milk to let-down. Consuming 5 drinks or more may inhibit your milk ejection reflex. Due to this milk ejection delay, a temporary decrease in milk production is possible

✨Alcohol peaks in the bloodstream and breastmilk at approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour after consumption. Other factors such as weight, food consumption & percentage of fat will also play into the timing of peaking

➡️It is this due to this reasoning many will consume alcohol 𝘸𝘩𝘪𝘭𝘦 feeding at the breast 𝗼𝗿 breast pumping

✨Alcohol does not accumulate and sustain in breastmilk. “Pumping and dumping” does not play any factor in removing alcohol from breastmilk. The alcohol concentrations in breast milk closely resemble those in maternal blood. In other words as blood alcohol levels decrease, so does the alcohol content within breastmilk

✨ In general, less than 2% of the alcohol dose consumed reaches the breastmilk

Lactating women should simply follow standard recommendations on alcohol consumption

🍻 Cheers!

Haastrup, Maija Bruun, et al. “Alcohol and Breastfeeding.” Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology, vol. 114, no. 2, 2013, pp. 168–173., https://doi.org/10.1111/bcpt.12149.

Alcohol - Drugs and Lactation Database (Lactmed) - NCBI Bookshelf. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK501469/

“Alcohol' s Effect on Lactation.” National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services