How Much Water Do You Need While Breastfeeding?

I just have to say, OMG – BREASTFEEDING! I am SO HUNGRY and SO THIRSTY!!! Never mind, sleep deprived, sore, etc., etc. I am no expert and I have read at least 100 different articles on breastfeeding to find out, “What is the right amount of water you need while breastfeeding?” and everything tells you a different amount or no specific amount AT ALL and the reason is, EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT – our metabolisms are different and our bodies use water differently. Just like our pregnancies and our babies – go with what works for you. What works for me is about a gallon of water a day – I know, crazy, right?? Some say 64 ounces at least everyday, some say upwards of 80 ounces. Some say you don’t have to specifically drink water – that you get plenty of water from your tea, coffee, juice or just your regular beverage of choice. To keep it simple, here are the 3 main things I garnered from my readings that made the most sense to me and SIMPLIFIED it:

1. DRINK YOUR WATER.

2. The amount of water you drink or don’t drink doesn’t increase or decrease your milk production.

3. You should drink the amount of water that makes you feel hydrated – which is the same advice for non-lactating moms. You should be urinating almost clear – not deep yellow and your urine shouldn’t have a noticeable scent.

I wanted to pass on something that helped me REMEMBER to drink water – let’s face it – we have new baby, new sleep-deprived mommy brain and believe it or not, I found myself without water ALL THE TIME. Every two hours (and less in the beginning) I was scooping up my crying newborn precious tiny baby, grabbing my iPhone with my breastfeeding app, remembering a new burp rag, a blanket, and my boppy pillow to nurse. The last thing I was thinking about was ME and my need (and desire) for water.

Establishing a main water bottle that my husband or mother or mother-in-law could fill with ice and fresh water from the refrigerator was a life saver. They could fill my water bottle for me and I was always thankful. This particular bottle made by Contigo (a Chicago company – http://www.gocontigo.com/water-bottles.html) helped me to fill on my own, and drink from with one hand, utilizing the straw or as a water bottle without the straw. Easy to clean and dishwasher safe. It holds 24 ounces or 3 cups of ice water and I EASILY go through 6 of these everyday – which is over a gallon of water a day. I also pay attention to the time that I filled it by marking the time on my bottle that I filled it – if by 9am I haven’t finished one full bottle, I know I need to make a point to drink. The handle makes it convenient to grab with everything else I have to pay attention to and if it knocks over because I have become an even clumsier person, it doesn’t spill.

This seems like an easy enough idea or thought – and quite logical, doesn’t it? But nothing that is easy appears easy when you’re caring for a NEW LIFE. I hope this helps – I wish I had designated this FROM THE BEGINNING. Just tuck it away and keep it in mind. Also, if you go their website, http://www.gocontigo.com/water-bottles.html, you can signup and receive 15% off your first purchase.

Lastly, I will continue using this water bottle because I rather love it for all the reasons above even after breastfeeding. My husband uses a different color bottle and I have a separate one that is a different color for my fresh juices I juice daily.

Good luck breastfeeding! I hope this was enjoyable and HELPFUL most of all.

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