Foods That Helps and Those That Are Detrimental For Breastfeeding Moms

Foods to Increase Breast Milk in New Moms

Many new moms wonder how breastfeeding will affect their diet.There are actually a lot of things that your breasts requires to make it proper for breastfeeding. You probably don’t need to make any major changes to what you eat or drink when you’re nursing, though there are a few important considerations to keep in mind:

Water

Ok! So water isn’t technically a food, but it is the most essential aspect of ensuring you’ll have an adequate milk supply. According to studies, 55% of Indians are chronically dehydrated. You don’t need to drink three gallons a day, but you do need to be adequately hydrated- 8 glasses of fluid each day is an absolute must. In the early stages of your breastfeeding journey it’s a necessity to have a bottle of water next to where you’re going to nurse. You might not be thirsty when you sit down, but it isn’t uncommon to be overwhelmed by thirst after a few minutes.

Choose foods rich in Iron, Protein and Calcium.

Good sources of iron include lentils, enriched cereals, whole-grain products, peas, dark leafy green vegetables and dried fruits. To help your body absorb iron, eat iron-rich foods along with foods high in vitamin C, such as citrus fruits.
For protein, consider eggs and dairy products or plant sources, such as soy products and meat substitutes, legumes, lentils, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.
Good sources of calcium include dairy products and dark green vegetables. Other options include calcium-enriched and -fortified products, such as juices, cereals, soy milk, soy yogurt and tofu, which are also excellent foods to increase breast milk naturally.

Eat fish – But be picky

When you’re nursing, in post pregnancy diet it’s also important to get protein from a variety of sources – including fish. The Indian Heart Association recommends fish for a heart-healthy diet.

Some fish (especially fresh water fish) also contain DHA and EPA, Omega-3 fats that play an important role in the brain and eye development that continues during your baby’s first year. As your baby gets these Omega-3s from your breast milk.

Not only does DHA help your baby, but it helps you too. Research suggests that moms who have lower levels of DHA, as well as lower seafood consumption, are more likely to develop postpartum depression.

Eat up to 400 gm of most types of fish and seafood per week, including Salmon, Shrimp, Lake Trout, Tilapia, Walking Catfish (Magur), Crab, Rohu, and Scallops. However, avoid seafood that are high in mercury.

If you don’t like seafood, try an Omega-3 supplement. Just be sure to talk to your healthcare provider first to find out how much to take.

What Foods And Drinks Should You Limit Or Avoid While Breast-Feeding?

Certain foods and drinks deserve caution while you’re breast-feeding. For example:

Alcohol

There’s no level of alcohol in breast milk that’s considered safe for a baby. If you drink, avoid breast-feeding until the alcohol has completely cleared your breast milk. This typically takes two to three hours for 12 ounces (355 ml) of 5% Beer, 5 ounces (148 ml) of 11% Wine or 1.5 ounces (44 ml) of 40% Liquor, depending on your body weight.

Caffeine

Avoid drinking more than 2 to 3 cups of caffeinated drinks a day. Caffeine in your breast milk might agitate your baby or interfere with your baby’s sleep.

EndNote

To determine links between your diet to increase breast milk and your baby’s behavior, keep a food diary. List everything you eat and drink, along with notes about how your baby reacts- if at all. If removing a food or drink from your diet has no impact on your baby’s fussiness, add it back to your diet and consider other culprits.