Alcohol and Pumping: Your Options for the Holidays
As a breastfeeding mom, there is a lot of buzz around alcohol and pumping or nursing. When you can drink, how much is recommended, and coming up with creative options so you can still celebrate with family and friends are all important considerations around this topic! Read on for more information about alcohol and pumping as well as some fun ways to enjoy a (non-alcoholic) drink this holiday season.
Should You Combine Alcohol and Pumping?
Whether you choose to drink alcohol or not is a completely personal choice… However, let’s break down some of the facts and recommendations so you can make an informed decision!
Alcohol WILL pass through your breastmilk if you pump or nurse soon after having a drink… However, it does not stay in your system for long!
What this means is that by waiting an appropriate amount of time (depending on how much you have to drink) before pumping or nursing, the alcohol will have left your system and you can breastfeed without concern.
Typically, it is okay to have 1 standard drink a day and then wait at least 2 hours to pump or nurse. The CDC further explains, however, that a “standard drink” has different definitions depending on whether you are drinking beer, malt liquor, wine, or 80-proof liquor.
What to Do With Your Breastmilk After Drinking
Because alcohol doesn’t stay in your system for too long, I definitely don’t recommend pumping and dumping! It will not remove the alcohol from your system faster. Plus, there is no reason to waste perfectly-useable breastmilk!
If you decide to drink and then need to pump shortly after (or before the alcohol has left your system), there are tons of ways to use that pumped milk besides throwing it out. Turning your breastmilk into a keepsake is one of these options. You can use breastmilk for things like lathers and jewelry that turn it into something useful!
Another option is using the milk for a milk bath. Breastmilk has tons of beneficial qualities for you and your baby’s skin. You can use a milk bath to use up the milk that you can’t feed your baby and still get benefits from it!
Non-Alcoholic Celebratory Drinks
Not wanting to mix alcohol and pumping or breastfeeding? Here are some of my favorite drink options to still keep things festive this holiday season!1. Bad Ass Mom Wine
One of my favorite wine options that have 0% alcohol is Bad Ass Mom Wine. This is a women owned small business where you can get your favorite drinks that taste just like the real deal! This is seriously the perfect option if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and don’t want alcohol, but still want to drink something fun with friends and family! They even come in adorable purse-size bottles for traveling!
2. Gem Wellbeing Bartique
Just recently found out about this amazing company. Women owned and offering alcohol free mocktails! The Gem Bar Bottle Shop offers many options but my favorite so far is the Key Lime Margarita!
3. Non-Alcoholic Mimosas
One option that I am loving right now is a non-alcoholic mimosa! Simply do a 50/50 split of Fre Sparkling Brut and orange juice for a delicious, holiday drink! No need to miss that brunch with your girlfriends!
- Sparkling Cider
Another great option that can replace champagne (especially for ringing in the New Year) is sparkling cider. There are a ton of bubbly flavor combinations to enjoy right from the grocery store!
- Ginger Ale Mix
Another simple option to skip the alcohol is ginger ale and cranberry juice. You can even add a slice of lemon or lime to make it a little more fun!
Options Besides Alcohol and Pumping
If breastfeeding during the holiday season is causing you stress, there are still so many ways to celebrate with friends and family and have a tasty drink! Or, if you choose to drink, just make sure you do so safely and wait until the alcohol has left your system to feed your baby. If you do decide to drink, it’s always safest to talk with your pediatrician to make sure you understand your options and are making it safe for your baby.
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