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Body Changes With #Breastfeeding

Before having a baby, I thought all the crazy body changes would be limited to pregnancy. I figured I’d basically have my body back after giving birth. This is true.. kinda.

I lost weight giving birth (don’t hate, I’m still curvy and plus sized), but my body is not the same. Some of that is just from having been pregnant but some of it is because I breastfeed. And some changes.. well, I like to blame breastfeeding because I don’t know what else would have caused it.

Warning to my family – I’ll be talking about nipples. Proceed with caution.

One of the most obvious body changes from breastfeeding is …. well, my breasts. They never really got HUGE like some people’s do while preggo. (I didn’t really need them any bigger) But they did grow in size. Enough that my old bras were uncomfortable. When my milk came in, I could not believe how large they had gotten. Especially that first day of Rissa’s latch amnesia and I started to get engorged. Wow. Some people notice these things right away, but I didn’t. I couldn’t wear any bras since I didn’t have a nursing bra until after two weeks post-birth and my nipples were super sensitive and tender. I had no idea how much they’d grown. Looking downward I saw the same swell and cleavage I was used to.

When I noticed was in the long mirror on the closet door.

The closet door was slid so it lined up next to the glider in the nursery. I don’t quite remember if that was on purpose or not. I had my arm on the armrest of the glider, my hand cupping the underside of my breast to support it while Rissa nursed. That made me take notice of size. They were as long as my forearm.

What? When did that happen?

Even though I’m still nursing at 8 months, they have gone back down in size. Not a lot, but they have. I’m no longer teeming with milk, after all. She favors one side so I get self conscious about looking lopsided.

Then there’s the nipples. They didn’t darken like the books said they would. They seemed to get larger though. I have noticed their shape has changed and their sensitivity. It seems to be an ongoing thing too.

And what about weight? “Everyone” told me I’d lose lots of weight breastfeeding. I’ve lost some without making any real effort but it’s not anything amazing. I only gained about 6 pounds while preggo and am down 20lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight. Despite this, it’s a tight squeeze to go a size smaller in my pants.I am aware that this can greatly vary, but I was kinda sorta hopin’ for it, y’know?

The last body change I’ve noticed and attribute to nursing is a change in body odor. Weird, right? I can’t describe the scent, but I first noticed it after my milk came in. My arm pits would get warm and itchy during feedings and … Well, I started to notice a distinct smell.

I wouldn’t even say it’s bad, but I continue to pick up this scent around feeding time. Is it DHA related? Something else? Once she weans I’ll have to see if it stops.

What about you? What body changes have you noticed?


Brandi Elam

Sunday 10th of July 2011

I don't know who the people are who lose weight while breastfeeding, but I wish I was one of them. I've breastfed three kids and have never lost post baby weight until I stopped nursing. Breastfeeding also makes me very hungry, especially in the early months. Even when I'm able to stick to healthy snacks and meals, I never lose weight. It's annoying.

And I know what you are talking about with the smell. I don't think it's a bad smell, but it's very distinct, almost sweet smelling (I don't take fenugreek or anything like that). It's just odd.

Thanks for the honesty in this post.


Sunday 10th of July 2011

I don't take anything either, but yes! Sorta sweet, but not all at the same time. I get very hungry and thirsty so that's probably not helping me.

Not a Perfect Mom

Saturday 9th of July 2011

when I was nursing I was an E cup...seriously... and the pheromones I gave off while I was nursing made my hubs go crazy...very caveman like..ha!


Saturday 9th of July 2011

Omg, the sweating and prickly feeling in the armpits... I thought that was just me! As a small-chested woman to start with I am really enjoying the upsizing with breastfeeding - I had to go and buy new clothes because my old tops didn't fit me anymore :) I have lost most of my pregnancy weight after 3 months but not all of it just yet. I expect like with most things, every body is different!

Janine @ Alternative Housewife

Saturday 9th of July 2011

Yeah, I miss my old boobs, but I'm getting over it. I wish that breastfeeding had helped me drop weight quickly. I expected it and it just didn't happen.

I am definitely experiencing bad body odor since having my son. It is not OK!


Friday 8th of July 2011

I breastfed for 13 months.I was surprised how big they got too (went from a B to a D). As the months went on though, they got smaller, which I actually appreciated. My son is over 2 now though, and the depressing part is that my boobs are sort of flabby - I never though I'd be the type to consider a boob job, but now I see why. I also felt like the longer I nursed, the LESS sensitive my nipples got - like they were getting over-used or something. I did lose about 5 extra pounds beyond my pre-pregnancy weight, but I gained it back to exactly where I was pre-pregnancy as soon as I stopped breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is definitely worthwhile and I'll do it again, but man, it sure is hard on the body! =) Thanks for your honest post!