Drinking wine while breastfeeding is a personal choice for every mother and a debatable issue in the scientific community.
To be fair, mostly doctors do not recommend doing this. On the other hand, experts admit that if we talk about a glass of good wine, then it will not harm the baby. But here there are some nuances that we will deal with right now.
How much alcohol does a baby get?
The amount of alcohol in breast milk is directly related to the amount of alcohol in the blood. But while some experts talk about the possibility of consuming 250 ml of wine without harm to the child, others recall that a safe level of alcohol, as in all other cases, does not exist here.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that if a nursing mother drinks more than one alcoholic drink per day, it negatively affects her baby’s motor development. A study published in the journal Pediatrics showed that children who were given breast milk about an hour after their mother drank alcohol had disturbed patterns of sleep and wakefulness.
Does beer increase the amount of milk?
It’s true that barley, used in beer production, contains a polysaccharide that can increase breast milk production by increasing prolactin levels in the body of a nursing mother.
But it’s also true that alcohol can reduce breast milk, slowing down the prolactin response. One study on a topic published in Developmental Psychobiology found that infants consumed less milk in four hours if their nursing mother drank a low-alcohol beer.
But what if you dump milk?
Expressing milk after drinking alcohol does not reduce the amount of alcohol in breast milk (again, because everything here depends on the level of alcohol in the blood). On the other hand, the procedure will make sense if the nursing mother feels discomfort from the fullness of the breast – only this is not connected with alcohol in any way.
In short, if you have consumed alcohol, it will be in your blood, and therefore in your breast milk. However, if this is one random glass of wine, and not three nonrandom (and, of course, not every day), then the child will be safe. Provided that the doctor has not given you other recommendations.