Diet for a Healthy Breastfeeding Mom

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By Dt Zubeda Tumbi , Dietitian/Nutritionist

Post pregnancy, your first priority is to lose the extra weight you gain during pregnancy. Even though it is important to get healthy and toned again, it is equally important that you do not skip on nutrients. Your body is now using all its resources to produce breastmilk for your baby. What you eat doesn’t always affect the breast milk’s quality, but you do need to eat the right things to stay healthy.

Here are some diet tips you can follow-

1. Stop counting calories: Generally, women who breastfeed need to eat 500 calories more than women who aren’t. In other words, you need to consume 2000-2500 calories every day. However, you don’t need to count calories throughout the day. Instead, you should eat when you are hungry. Also, the right number of calories depend on how your metabolism works, your weight and how regularly you breastfeed.

2. Lose the weight slowly and steadily: Honestly, pregnancy weight takes at least a year to get rid of. So don’t rush, and give in to crash diets to lose weight. A sudden weight loss and calorie drop can affect your milk supply. Instead, focus on losing 1 pound every week.

3. Choose healthy foods: Complex carbs, vitamins and good fats are important for a healthy diet, since you need the nutrition and durable energy to sustain not only yourself, but also the newest addition to your family.

4. Eat fish-but carefully: Fish such as salmon is good for you, since it contains DHA (Omega 3 fatty acids) which has an important role in the development of your baby’s brain and eyes. Limit your consumption however, since maximum fish contain mercury, which in high amounts, can harm your child.

5. Take your vitamins: Don’t stop taking your prenatal multivitamin and mineral supplements. Calcium, vitamin D and DHA supplements can enrich your diet and help you nurse your baby better.

Foods That Improve Breastmilk Supply-

  1. Fenugreek
  2. Oats
  3. Brewer’s Yeast
  4. Alfalfa
  5. Garlic
  6. Fennel
  7. Sesame Seeds
  8. Nuts
  9. Lactation Cookies