When moms chose breastfeeding it can be not only trying on your body physically, but eating the right foods plays a huge part too.
I once had a relative whose baby kept breaking out in a rash. It turned out that it was from the peanut butter she was eating on her English muffins for breakfast. So it really is beneficial to watch what you eat for your baby.
The key to any good breastfeeding meal plan is balance. This will have you going back to your elementary school days and learning the food groups.
Grains- Choose whole grain bread and rice as they contain the most fiber and nutritional value.
Proteins- Choose whole grain bread and rice as they contain more fiber and nutrients
Fruits and Vegetables- Choose bright colored ones as they offer plenty of antioxidants and vitamins. Eat raw fruits and vegetables, as they are the most nutritious.
Vitamins and Minerals- Low-fat milk and yogurt are fortified with many essential vitamins and minerals.
1. Seasonal Fruits
Fruits are rich sources of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C helps in wound healing and is important for new moms who have had a C Section. This is why it is advised to increase the intake of citrus fruits like oranges, tomatoes, etc., in your diet. Fruits like apple and banana help to increase the energy level in the body and help remain healthy.
Eggs are a perfect source of meeting your body’s regular protein requirement. They are also a vital dietary source of Vitamin D. These together help in the development, growth and strengthening of your infant’s bones and muscles and hence are a must in the diet of a new mom.
Leafy green vegetables like spinach, broccoli, etc., are storehouses of Vitamin A, Vitamin C and iron. They are the best diet for breastfeeding mother, which are important for a baby’s growth. These low calorie vegetables are also an excellent source of calcium and healthy antioxidants, important for both you and your baby.
4. Whole Grains
Whole grain cereals like oatmeal, brown rice, barley, etc., is fortified source of essential nutrients like proteins, vitamins, iron and other minerals. They provide energy and stamina to you; help you to relieve post partum symptoms (if any), while also helping in the overall growth and development of your baby.
To ensure proper milk production and maintain adequate energy levels in your body you need to stay well hydrated. Dehydration is one of the major issues faced by lactating mothers that can reduce milk production, cause fatigue and drop in stamina. You, as a new mommy, should drink juices, water, soups, milk, etc., sufficiently. However caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea should be avoided.
6. Lean Meats
Lean meats from fish and chicken are rich in vital nutrients. They help to provide DHA and essential fatty acids to you and help in developing, your baby’s nervous system and boosts overall growth. All the other nutrients present in lean meat promote recovery and general well being of new mommy as well.
7. Low Fat Dairy
Your diet during breastfeeding must include generous amounts of low fat dairy products like milk, yogurt, etc. Apart from being a rich source of Vitamin B and D, dairy products are one of the best sources of calcium. Calcium is required for your baby’s bone structure development and equally essential for the mothers well being. If you are lactose intolerant mothers, soy milk is good for you.
Garlic has been used for ages by lactating mothers to increase milk production in their bodies. Adding garlic to your food not only makes it tasty but strengthens your immune system and boosts lactation. Its anti microbial and anti oxidant properties help to battle infection and improve milk supply in your body.
Legumes or pulses are a rich source of proteins and iron content, especially for vegetarian/vegan mothers. Beans, peas, lentils, peanuts, kidney beans, alfalfa and black beans are fine examples of legumes. They are also gas inducing foods, and hence should be included in moderation, especially if the new mom had a C-section.
Carrots are enriched with carbohydrates and potassium, both of which help boost energy and stamina in lactating mothers. They are a vital source of beta Carotene which is required by you during lactation period. Antioxidants in carrots also help to shed off the rigid baby weight and thus are a must have in the diet of new moms.
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