Breast-Feeding diet is the eating plan designed for women who breast feed their babies. The diet is planned keeping in mind the nourishment of both mother and baby. The milk for feeding is produced from the fats stored during pregnancy and thus it is very important for a breastfeeding woman to take good care of her by eating healthy foods during pregnancy and post pregnancy period. Breastfeeding diet basically comprises vegetables, fruits and lean proteins in order to provide enough nutrients to mother and baby.
Breast-Feeding Diet: Recommended Foods
A breast feeding mother needs to ensure proper nutrition that can be gained through her diet. Here are some of the foods associated with nutrition required during breast feeding period.
Protein- Some of the foods that provide with protein are meat, fish, chicken, yogurt, cheese, legumes and nuts.
Calcium- The baby needs calcium for bone development and it can be achieved through consumption of milk, cheese and yogurt. Calcium deficiency in breast feeding mother can lead to osteoporosis in later life.
Iron- Iron is very much needed during pregnancy and breast feeding period. Spinach, red meat, liver, fish and apples are some of the foods that should be consumed during this time.
Vitamins and folate- Green leafy vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, and spinach are rich sources of folate. Citrus fruits, tomatoes, capsicum, tropical fruits are rich source of vitamin C. Carrots, pumpkin provide the body with sufficient vitamin A.
Omega 3- Fish is an important source of Omega 3; however care should be taken to avoid high mercury fish. Ocean salmon and rainbow trout are the fish for breast feeding women.
Breast-Feeding Diet: Dietary Restrictions
Alcohol- Alcohol should be consumed less during the breastfeeding period as some of it reaches the baby through the breast milk. If consumed, a proper time gap between consumption and feeding should be maintained. Also, the immediate breast milk should be pumped and discarded.
Spicy foods- Consuming spicy food can cause colic in babies and thus should be avoided completely or consumed very less.
High mercury foods- Breastfeeding mothers should consume very less amounts of high mercury fish like sword fish, tile fish and mackerel. These fish can affect the development of nervous system in babies.
Allergy food- A breastfeeding mother should avoid foods that are known to cause allergies. Peanuts, peanut butter and dairy products are some of them and should be avoided if after consuming them, some problems are observed in baby.
Trans fat rich foods- Trans fats foods like margarines and shortenings are known to cause high cholesterol level and heart problems. The breast feeding women who consume them are prone to higher percentage of body fat and even the infants are likely to be obese in later life. Trans fat rich foods are strictly restricted while following the breast-feeding diet.