By Guadalupe Alfaro Cabrera, BS, CSUN Dietetic Intern
Research has shown that breastfeeding offers many health benefits for infants and mothers. Breastfeeding offers infants nutritionally balanced meals at the adequate temperature. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends to exclusively breastfeed for the first 6 months of life, because breast milk is sufficient to support optimal growth and development, and to continue for at least 12 months1. Additionally, breast milk offers protection against some diseases, and lowers the risk for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome2. Breastfeeding helps the mother heal faster after childbirth. Women that breastfeed have a lower risk to develop type 2 diabetes, certain types of breast cancer and ovarian cancer3.
Many women want to continue breastfeeding after returning to school or work. Expressing or pumping their milk is an alternative, which can create a lot of anxiety and may be sometimes challenging. Following a schedule, or pumping at the time the baby is drinking the breast milk at home are some of the usual recommendations provided by lactation consultants4.
My son is turning 18 months this week and I remember that I went back to work when he turned 5 months, so I started pumping three times a day until his first birthday. I pumped in many different locations, without a doubt, CSUN surprised me with the excellent accommodations they provide. They were clean, comfortable, and private. Sometimes I had to walk across campus for more than 5 minutes, others less, but on most of the days I would return home with enough milk for my baby. Yes, there were times in which I was so stressed and/or only able to pump twice that I did not reach my production goal for the day. To get the remainder of milk needed, I would pump in the middle of the night.
Breastfeeding may not be easy for everyone, but getting the right assistance can definitely help to have a successful experience. If it doesn’t work for you the first time, don’t give up. Try it one more time with your new baby, look for a lactation consultant, and most importantly, TRUST YOUR BODY that you will be able to produce enough milk for your baby. I would even suggest trying some meditation or yoga to help you relax. The Oasis Wellness Center can be a great way to reduce stress, which may limit milk production.
Remember: Look for the RIGHT SUPPORT. Lactation consultants are available to qualifying moms through WIC (Women, Infants, and Children). CSUN has a WIC outreach office, open on Thursdays from 9 am – 12 pm, located in Santa Susana Hall room 104 that can help families with support, resources, and healthy foods. You can also join the CSUN breastfeeding coalition group to stay connected to your peers.
The Marilyn Magaram Center houses one of the four lactation spaces available at CSUN for students and staff5
CSUN lactation spaces
- The Institute for Community Health and Wellbeing (appointment recommended). First floor of Santa Susana Hall. Call (818) 677-7715 to make a reservation.
- Student Health Center (appointment recommended). First floor of Klotz Student Health Center. Call (818) 677-3666 and ask for the Clinical Support Unit.
- University Student Union (USU). First floor of the East Conference Center. Look for a USU representative for access code.
- Marilyn Magaram Center (MMC) (appointment recommended). Sequoia Hall. Call (818) 677-3102 and check-in room 120 for access to the room.
A healthy diet helps women keep their body in prime condition for labor, delivery, and lactation. Mothers often have questions about food to eat or avoid when breastfeeding. A overly restrictive diet may put the mother at nutritional risk. Ask a dietitian for an assessment if you need more assistance with your diet.
This recipe makes 6 servings (4-inch slice per serving). You could make once a week and have breakfast ready to eat all week.
Preparation time: 75 minutes
- 1¼ cups sliced mushrooms
- 3 green onions, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1½ teaspoons dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon dried mustard
- 1 cup egg substitute or 5 eggs
- ¾ cup nonfat milk
- ½ cup shredded low-fat Cheddar cheese or Mozzarella cheese
- Place an oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat oven to 375˚F.
- Spray a large skillet with nonstick cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat.
- Sauté mushrooms, green onions, and garlic until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in oregano, basil, salt, marjoram, thyme, ground black pepper, and dried mustard. Cook until liquid is evaporated, about 2 minutes.
- Let the mushroom mixture cool for about 5 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, combine egg substitute, milk, and cheese; beat well.
- Combine the batter with the mushroom mixture and pour into a 10-inch pie dish.
- Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until filling is puffed, set, and starting to brown. Serve while hot.
Recipe adapted from Mushroom Quiche Champions for Change, California Department of Public Health.
1. Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. Breastfeeding guidelines and recommendations. Publication date unavailable. Updated March 21,2018. Retrieved on April 24, 2018, from https://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/faq/index.htm
2. American Academy of Pediatrics. Breastfeeding and the use of human milk. Pediatrics. March 2012. 129(3), e827–e841. Retrieved April 24, 2018, from http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/129/3/e827
3. Women’s Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.Making the decision to breastfeed. Publication date unavailable. Updated April 16,2018. Retrieved April 24, 2018, from:
4. Lauwers, J., Swisher A. Counseling the Nursing Mother. 6th edition. Burlintong, MA. Jones & Barlett Learing. 508-509.
5. California State University Northridge. CSUN Lactation Accommodations. Publication date unavailable. Retrieved April 24, 2018, from: https://www.csun.edu/wellbeing/csun-lactation-accomodations