Salma Hayek 'Can't Stop' Nursing Valentina

11/10/2008 at 02:00 PM ET

Having recently hit the one-year mark for nursing her daughter Valentina Paloma, 13 ½-months, Salma Hayek says she will continue to take breastfeeding day-by-day. Likening herself to "an alcoholic," the 42-year-old actress tells the Times Online that nursing is "a very powerful thing" and she has no intention of stopping anytime soon. "It’s like, I don’t care if I cry, I don’t care if I’m fat, I’m just gonna do it for one more week, one more month," she explains. "Then, when I see how much good it is doing her, I can’t stop."

Salma admits, however, that like many women she struggled in the early stages.

"It’s tough. You don’t know what pain I’m in after two hours, how difficult it was at first."

Touching on earlier statements she made during an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Salma says she does take issue with "the myth" that breastfeeding speeds weight loss. "That is soooo not true," she says — pointing to her tummy for proof. "It’s like, ‘Please, everyone, can you stop telling me I look really well?’"

Valentina is Salma’s only child with ex-fiancé François-Henri Pinault.

Source: Times Online

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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Shelby on

From my personal experience, the weight loss is not a myth. In fact, I lost a little more than I gained with the pregnancy, but then put a few pounds back on after I weaned my sons. I think it’s just different for every person’s body.

crystal on

Losing weight by breastfeeding depends on the individual. I know for a fact that within two weeks after giving birth I weighed a pound less than I did before being pregnant. I know that everytime I fed my daughter my stomach muscles contracted so hard. With my son the contracts were slight. So I think if you don’t physically feel a difference then you probably won’t lose a lot of weight.

kaitlyn on

I think she looks fabulous.

crimpe on

Good for her. I wish I nursed beyond a year with my kids. I know it is a personal decision, and formula is fine. Still, under ideal circumstances, breast is best. I’m with her on the weight loss – it isn’t until I finish nursing that the last 5-10 lbs. disappear, despite exercise and sensible eating. I am small, like her, and every pound counts! I really like her.

Caroline on

I agree, the beginning was extremely difficult, especially since I got mastitis twice in the first 6 weeks. So after the second round of anti-biotics, I made my mind up that I was going to quit gradually but that is when it got easy. My son weaned himself at 11 months and I was the one who wasn’t ready to quit. I miss it soooo much!

Dina on

EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT. Some keep weight on while breastfeeding, on others the weight flies off. There are so many factors like how much weight you gained, your metabolism, etc.

For me, I lost all but 15lbs breastfeeding for a year but other people I know lost 10lbs more than their original weight. C’est La Vie!

Miche on

I’m just like the previous poster. Regardless what I ate or how much I exercised, I held on to my last 15 pounds of babyfat while I was breastfeeding. It wasn’t until after my daughter weaned herself at 7 1/2 months that those 15 pounds then melted off in two weeks.

And Congrats to Ms. Hayek for her efforts!
I would have gladly breastfed for a year, but my daughter is very independent and had other ideas.

Megan on

It’s wonderful to hear a celeb talking about extended nursing. My son is 16 months and we’re still nursing.

Tara on

I unfortunately was one of those people that gained weight breast feeding.

Sheron on

I just finished nursing my son. He turned 2 in June and was done-done in August. My 6 year old went to 26 months as well. It’s tough but no regrets…except he still reaches for “milk-milk” whenever falling asleep next to anyone!!! Even his big brother!

Christina on

So happy to hear she was and still is nursing. I’ve seen her baby pictured with a bottle on a few occasions and just assumed she didn’t. Good for you Salma-I think you look amazing!

tasha on

I am one of those unfortunate ones that am gaining weight while breastfeeding…I actually put on 5 pounds and my son is almost 5 months old! I’m glad to hear Salma talk about how hard it was in the beginning…i used to have to take deep yoga breaths before feeding my son (it was so painful)..but now everything is so much better–well except for the weight gain

I-dra on

i think what she meant was that “the myth” is that breastfeeding is supposed to be the blanket cure-all for everyone & that if you nurse, you’re guaranteed to lose weight. i believed it, too, when i was pregnant, but here i am, 2 years later & still 25 lbs over my normal weight. i do what i can, eat fairly well, take my vitex (it’s a berry) & try to be active, but i’m pretty certain it won’t come off ’til we wean. until then, i buy clothes that fit me now. i was tempted to wean last week, but after one day, i was crying & realized, forget about my son not being ready – *I’M* not ready!

marla on

yea for salma! i found that breastfeeding was very hard at first, but i kept at it and am so glad i did. it was effortless after awhile.

i weaned my 2nd son at 13.5 months and was sad to do it. my hubby and i went on a much needed vacation w/o the kids and i didn’t want to haul a breastpump to another country, only to have to dump the milk. so, i weaned him before we left. i still miss it.

SH on

Crystal, The “stomach muscles” you felt weren’t stomach muscles contracting – it was your uterus contracting – which naturally happens when you breastfeed and has nothing to do with how much weight you will/will not lose while breastfeeding. You’re supposed to feel physical uterine contractions while breastfeeding from the oxytocin your body releases when you breastfeed. It’s really intense and painful right after the baby is born. It’s the bodies natural way of getting the uterus to contract back down after giving birth.
Anyway, I have 4 kids, breastfed all of them until they weaned themselves, all between 13-18 months. I always held on to 10-15lbs until they were done breastfeeding. Unfortunately I wasn’t one of those women who say their weight “melts” off…much like Salma. I can relate!

Nicola on

I nursed my son to just shy of his 4th birthday. We let him make the decision (I was pretty confident that he wouldn’t still be nursing at college!). I have to admit that once my body adjusted to the change, I dropped 10 lbs instantly, no change in diet or exercise. In fact, I had a lot of comments from family and friends who were concerned because it simply fell away so fast (I’m a small person to begin with). Who knows, everybody is different, but perhaps on a smaller frame your body is holding the weight in order to protect the nursing mother.

Nancy S on

I thrill to hear celebrity mothers speak out about extended nursing – it warms my heart.

Good for Salma for making it this far happily, even better for Valentina. 😉

Callie on

I nursed my second DD till she was 2 and she was all for continuing past 2! LOL Like Salma, I did not lose weight while nursing. In fact, I gained weight. Since stopping nursing my second dd, I’ve lost about 25 lbs. Nursing can be very challenging, especially if you have a tongue thruster who doesnt latch properly! It was absolute murder with my first DD. Second one wasnt a tongue thruster and nursing was a breeze. GL and hang in there to all the new nursing mommies out there!

Jonahsmom on

I am nursing my 18 month old and I agree and disagree with the ‘myth’. I gained 60 pounds and very easily lost ALL of it by the time he turned eight months old, however, I have since gained about eight pounds even though we still nurse A LOT, even through the night. I am comfortable at this weight, but feel like I’m definitely holding on to some ‘reserves’. I have always lost weight easily when I try, so I assume that it will either fall off when I wean or I’ll work at it for a couple months. I’d like Salma to remember that a lot of that extra weight is in the extra boobs, lol! I am a small person (about a 4 now) and I have large breasts normally… bigger when nursing!

JJ on

I agree – for some women, the weight just does not come off while breastfeeding! I lost a bunch initially but the last 15-20 lbs, with both babies, is just so stubborn while breastfeeding.

Good for Salma for doing what’s right for her and Valentina! I nursed my first until she weaned herself at 19 mos, and I’ll nurse this baby until he’s ready to be done, too. 🙂

Crystal on

I’m all for breastfeeding. I think it is a natural way for a woman to feed her child. I also think that women have the right not to breastfeed their children if they chose to not do so. However, Nicola…I find it a little disturbing that you breastfed your child till he was almost 4. I find that gross. It’s my opinion but to breastfeed a child till their almost in preschool is disgusting! Again….my personal opinion!

Candice on

Someone needs to tell Salma that feeding her baby past one year is completely normal, in fact worldwide weaning age is around 4. Its our culture that has it backwards. and most certainly its not odd and its great that she enjoys it. I am glad she doesn’t appear to be giving into society’s pressure that says anything over 1 or 6 months or(insert age here) is “weird”. because its not, we’re just weird 😉

joy on

I’m doing the same thing as Salma, “taking it day by day” with breastfeeding.

When my daughter was born, I decided it would be fantastic if I could nurse her for a year. The early bits of breastfeeding were challenging, and I couldn’t possibly imagine lasting for a whole year!

Her first birthday is in 2 weeks, I’m still nursing, and I think we’ll go way beyond a year! She has never been sick, is super healthy, and I see how nursing comforts her and helps her feel secure. Our experience has been great, and I totally know what Salma is talking about.

BTW, I didn’t lose a single pound for 5 months after my daughter was born. Around 7 months, it started falling off, and I’m now a few pounds under my pre-pregnancy weight. It’s just different for everyone.

Jill on

Nursing at 13 1/2 months is sick! She must be enjoying it too much. The child needs to become independent and this is her way of keeping her daughter needing her.

Rebecca on

I think it’s fantastic that she said she would continue nursing no matter what, even if she was fat. That’s HUGE in Hollywood! Kudos to Salma!

Lorus on

Kudos to Salma. I think she looks great just the way she is. Every woman is different when it comes to post partum weight loss.
I nursed my first daughter for 4 years. My second is almost 11 months and still going strong.

DC on

I completely agree with Salma’s views on nursing. I had 7 children and nursed them anywhere from 6 weeks to five years. It’s really an amazing way to bond with your child and no matter what anyone says, it’s an extremely personal decision whether to continue or not. There should be no judgement of anyone who declines to nurse, or to pursue extended nursing. Keep up the great work Salma

Liza on

I didnt lose any weight bf-ing either, but Salma and I are built alot alike, busty and curvy… so I feel her pain 🙂 I had some issues at first because I felt like I was going to crush my baby’s head, but I got over that very quickly 🙂

Mrs R. on

YEAH!!!! FINALLY a celebrity who says the truth about breastfeeding!
It helps you lose SOME of the weight but not all for peet’s sake!
People who lost it all from breastfeeding are the exception not the rule.

I LOVE Salma Hayek. She’s SO normal!

megan on

I bf for 8 weeks and I’m still pumping now at 5 mos. I did not get the help I needed in the beginning to really succeed but I make plenty of milk and pumping is a breeze for me compared to nursing. As for weight, I am stalled at the same place even with diet and cardio at the gym 2x a week plus a walk every night. I expect it will come off slowly and eventually- maybe weaning completely will do that. I agree that it is a myth. It may work for some women, but you don’t know until you try. BTW, dieting hasn’t lessened my supply at all, so I wish I started reducing my calories sooner after birth. I went way overboard on food because I thought I needed to. But again, that’s a whole other myth. I ate because my doctor told me to. Now I know with my next child it can be different.

Jennifer on

Oooh I had the stomach contractions and all that jazz but STILL didn’t lose weight the entire time I breastfed! It’s not a guarantee…some women’s bodies resist losing the weight and some just have it all fall off like a miracle.

I was chubby til I stopped BFing and then I lost the weight.

I wanted to die of shame everyone said “are you breastfeeding? the weight just falls off…” it felt so judgemental and as if I was doing it wrong! Made a beautiful experience really emotionally tough for me.

THANK YOU SALMA for saying that!!! Yes she looks wonderful, but if SHE isn’t happy with her body, she probably has a good reason for it. She’s always been curvy and self-assured…not a hollywood skinny nutjob!!

Judy on

I think it is great that Salma is doing what is best for her and her baby. She looks fabulous and her baby is one lucky baby!

Sarah on

I nursed my son for 2 years and 1 month til I found out I was pregnant again. I nursed my daughter for 2 years and 7 months. Of course they started with solids as well at 4 months! I didn’t lose that much weight either. I enjoyed eating well and nursing wholeheartedly! Good for you Salma; do whatever makes you feel most comfortable!

Dina on

Good for Hayek!

I’m so happy for her and her baby.

I wish more celebrity moms refrained from weaning their babies at unnaturally early ages.

Jackie on

I too am currently a nursing mom. I’m 23 and my daughter is 6 months and even the idea of someday not breastfeeding her gets me emotional. It’s a bonding experience that can’t ever be explained until experienced yourself. As far as the weight, I was a tiny girl pre-pregnancy, lost 15 lbs in the 1st trimester and then packed on the lbs. By the end of pregnancy i gained back the 15 lbs and an additional 44 lbs and it is coming off extremly slow. But it’s worth it.

plankbob on

I have read that Pu-Yi, the last emperor of China, still had wet nurses when he was 10.

Lacey on

I know that to my knowledge of having breastfed my son and now I will breastfeed my daughter when she is born, that breastfeeding helps your uterus contract faster back to it’s regular size, but no one should really breastfeed just to get back into shape faster and lose the weight. They should do it for the reason of how well it helps your child grow, helps with your child brain growth and stimulation. So instead of wonering about if breastfeeding really helps you weight or not, just know that one day everything will go back to “Normal” for you.

Maggie M on

Nursing is a private thing between a mother and baby.
I believe it helps in the bonding process from the first moment
after delivery.
Moms have to take cues from her baby.
I had all the intentions to nurse until my daughter was 12 months.
She rejected me at 10 months not wanting to lay and cuddle but observe her world. I pumped what I could for bottles and sippy cups until my body gave out. I think it helped my loose some weight, but that is different for everyone.

Skybear on

I am now in my mid 60s, and though my own mother attempted to nurse her three daughters, she had legitimate reasons she could not successfully do so.
Both my older as well as my younger sisters were born with, “Hare Lip,” And neither was physically able to nurse either of them.
I was the middle child, and had no physical abnormalities, and by all signs, I should have been able to nurse.
Mom said that she tried, and tried, but I would refuse to nurse. finally, she said I bit her until she bled.
So, we all three were bottle fed.
When I was growing up, we always had some type of animals, and it had just always made sense to me, that if cows nurse their young, ditto with cats, dogs, goats, pigs, and well, all mammals, including whale nurse their young.
God had to have had good reason for such a program. I was very determined that when we had children, I would nurse them as long as they wanted to nurse.
My oldest daughter, who is now in her mid forties, was only able to nurse for a week or two.
I had been passing out constantly, and my doctor had to put me on medication that would have not been good for my baby.
However, nine years later, when we decided to have our second child, she actually nursed for a full two years.
I have always been so grateful that I was able to stick with it.
When my youngest daughter began Kindergarten, all of the students were given a TB skin test, and she as well as my husband tested positive.
First my daughter was tested, along with her well-baby vaccinations, etc. Well, let me tell you, I thought for sure I was going to lose my beloved child to TB. Then, the Heath Dept. had all of the rest of our family tested. Only my husband tested positive, though he and my youngest daughter nearly never went anyplace together, without the rest of the family.
Just prior to her beginning Kindergarten, we returned from a month long trip to Mexico City, and Acapulco.
Still, my youngest was just Mama’s girl, and it really did not make any sense to me, how they both could be affected, without neither our eldest daughter, or myself, showing positive also.
Anyway, they put my daughter on a medication to help prevent the TB from becoming active, but she had very negative response to the medication. They said my husband was too old to take the medication, since he was in his later thirties, so he should only get annual chest x-rays, just to be on the safe side, as should our daughter.
This daughter also nursed her two children after marriage, and having a family.
My eldest daughter just plain did not have sufficient milk for her first child, and the baby was allergic to ever single formula the doctors tried her, on.
Well, I certainly was not able to nurse by then, so I bought a registered Dairy Goat, and milked her twice daily, and the baby did just great on the raw goat’s milk, for two years.
Don’t let anyone push you around. You are the parent, and it is your responsibility to do what is best for your child.
If others think they are doing well to only nurse a short while, well, it is the loss for their child, as well as a loss of the special times a mother spends bonding with her little ones.
They grow up so fast, as it is. Don’t waste such precious such as this special diet, as well as the special moments with your child.

Third Wife on

Nicola I also bf for 4+ years with my son, he just didn’t quit until he was ready. I didn’t work and had all the time in the world to spend on his care. He is now a grown man, and I’m so proud of him. His older sister is also a wonderful adult. Nothing disgusting Crystal.