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Diet for Mom during Breastfeeding
Food, Post Pregnancy

Diet for Mom during Breastfeeding

Alternative Text By: Pradnya Salve | November 7, 2018

A mother nurtures her precious baby inside the tummy for 9 months and once the baby enters this world, she promises her new born all the nutrition and care. For initial days, the new born is completely dependent on mother’s milk for all the nourishment as breast milk is very nutritious and contains most of the nutrients your baby needs for the first 6 months of their life. Breastfeeding has all sorts of benefits for both mom and baby. And that is the reason why a mother is always advised to eat healthy during this period. The modern way says a new mom can eat anything as before and nothing wrong in it but to have a steady milk supply and keeping up your energy quotient high a little planning or diet during breastfeeding will help you to be at ease. Also, routinely eating healthy foods throughout the day will maximize the little energy you probably have as a new mom. The following are some of the tips for the right diet for a breastfeeding mother:

  • In our country lactating women or new mothers are given food laden with heavy portions of ghee. As there is no proof that this causes increase in breast milk production, I would advise to focus on fresh fruits, milk, yoghurt and juices instead. I have never liked ghee in my life nor did I consume it during that important phase of breastfeeding and it did not affect my milk supply, after 2 years I am still going strong with breastfeeding

good if breastfeeding mothers drink water

  • Drink plenty of water during lactation. Its good if breastfeeding mothers drink water even if they are not thirsty
  • Oats is very much in fashion these days among working mothers. It is light and provides the right nutrition. Lactating mothers are advised to have oats as a part of their diet as it helps in reducing cholesterol and regulate blood pressure & most importantly, it’s also seen to be helping increase the milk supply
  • One should always be a little thoughtful when it comes to consuming supplements during breastfeeding. Many supplements contain herbs, stimulants and active substances that may be transferred to breast milk. However, there are several supplements that may benefit breastfeeding mothers like multivitamins, Vitamin B12, Omega 3(DHA) or Vitamin D (please consume them only after consulting your gynaecologist)

whole grains great breastfeeding food

  • High protein rich foods items such as whole grains, cereals, pulses, dried fruits, fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs and chicken is good for the mother and baby. Iron-rich beans, particularly dark-colored ones like black beans and kidney beans, are a great breastfeeding food, especially for vegetarians
  • Garlic is a common ingredient that is found in every Indian home, adding garlic to your food not only increases the deliciousness of your dish but also increases the milk supply
  • Caffeine or any other aerated drinks are passed into the milk, but most babies are not affected by it but if your baby isn’t sleeping well or is irritable, you may want to avoid caffeine or limit its intake. Newborns may be more sensitive to caffeine than older babies
  • Sprouted grains are much healthier than usual dry grains. Try Wheat/Ragi/Bajra/Jowar. Make flour of sprouted and dried grains and use it for making porridges
  • Since there is no proven link to think that certain foods may cause colic to the baby, mothers are advised to eat what suits them and avoid foods that doesn’t suit their post-partum body

The general rule is that you can eat anything in moderation while breastfeeding. If you’re nursing, the quality of your breast milk stays almost same no matter what you choose to eat. But there’s a catch: When you aren’t getting the needed nutrients from your diet, your body will provide them from your own stores. So, make sure you get all the nutrients you and your baby need.

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This content has been certified by our panelist Dr. Anjali Kumar

Dr. Anjali Kumar

MBBS, Certificate Course and Training,
MD - Obstetrics & Gynaecology

26 years experience

Gynecologist/Obstetrician

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