22: Is breast really best? Breastfeeding and PCOS – the things you need to know

When it comes to fertility, there’s a lot of talk about getting pregnant and staying pregnant with PCOS, but there’s an important topic that no one is really talking about…breastfeeding! 

There’s lots of information out there now on getting pregnant and PCOS, but virtually nothing about what to do when you actually are pregnant. What do I need to consider? Are there any additional risks that I need to know about? With breastfeeding, we’re always told that breast is best – and it is – but for many women, breastfeeding isn’t always an option.

While the studies on breastfeeding and PCOS are pretty limited, the research that has been done has found that women with PCOS may have greater problems when it comes to breastfeeding. Your midwife, GP or antenatal teacher might not know this because they don’t specialise in PCOS. 

How do you know if this is you? What signs do you need to look out for? And what can you do to improve your chances of being able to breastfeed?

There is a lot to think about when it comes to breastfeeding – especially when you have PCOS – and it can be confusing to know where to turn for information.

So, on this week’s episode of The PCOS Nutritionist Podcast, I’m talking all things breastfeeding – how to know if your breastfeeding ability is going to be impacted by your PCOS, why this may be happening and the changes you can make to help. This topic is super interesting, and there’s a lot more to breastfeeding than breast is best – if you want to know why, make sure you tune in!

This episode is for you if:

  • You’re trying to conceive, currently pregnant or recently postpartum
  • You want to know if PCOS will stop you from being able to breastfeed
  • You can’t / weren’t able to breastfeed and you want to hear more about the science behind why that might be
  • You have insulin resistance
  • You had issues with ovulation during puberty
  • Your GP / midwife / antenatal educator doesn’t seem to be able to answer your questions

Some things we cover in this episode:

  • The top three things that are likely to impair your chances of being able to breastfeed
  • What insulin resistance has to do with breast growth, milk production and breastfeeding in general
  • Things outside of PCOS that may be affecting your ability to breastfeed
  • How to know if your baby isn’t getting the nutrients they need from your breastmilk
  • The best way to eat for breastfeeding
  • Getting back to your pre-baby weight – is it possible to do it and breastfeed at the same time?