Diet for New Moms: Foods To Eat and Avoid While Breastfeeding
A healthy diet will keep a lactating mother full and energetic.
A healthy diet will keep a lactating mother full and energetic.(Photo: iStock)

Diet for New Moms: Foods To Eat and Avoid While Breastfeeding

Nine months of pregnancy is one of the most essential time in a woman’s life.

During this phase, a woman’s body undergoes the depletion of significant nutrients. So it becomes more important to maintain a balanced and nutritious diet during lactation (breastfeeding).

A healthy diet is important because it will keep a lactating mother full and energetic. It will also provide the baby with essential nutrients required for further development and growth.

So, here’s a list of foods to eat and foods to avoid during lactation.

Foods That Boost Lactation

Lactogenic food such as almonds are recommended worldwide as they help new mothers lactate.
Lactogenic food such as almonds are recommended worldwide as they help new mothers lactate.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Nuts

Powerhouse of nutrition which are high in vital minerals like zinc, iron and calcium. Nuts are also rich in vitamins B and K and a natural source of essential fatty acids. Lactogenic food such as almonds are recommended worldwide as they help new mothers lactate.

Seeds

Seeds are a concentrated source of all essential nutrients. Seeds are high in protein, minerals and healthy fats and like nuts, seeds also have lactogenic properties. Every type of seed has its unique nutritional value, so choose a variety of them such as fennel seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds etc.

Beans and Legumes

These are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, protein and phytoestrogens. Chickpeas (from legume family) have high amount of galactagogue, which helps in milk production, content found in it. Soybeans are also widely consumed because of their high phytoestrogen content.

Tip: Include an assortment of beans and legumes in your diet to ensure a healthy supply of milk.
Green leafy vegetables have phytoestrogens content.
Green leafy vegetables have phytoestrogens content.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Green Vegetables

Consuming more green leafy vegetables shows a positive effect on milk production and keeps the hormones balanced as they have phytoestrogens content.

Dairy Products

Consume yogurt, cheese or even milk, as all dairy products are important for healthy breastfeeding. Milk is the best source of protein, vitamin B and calcium. It is also good for strengthening of bones. But always remember, moderation is the key.

Also Read : Dear Moms, Here’s How to Take Care of Your Body After Pregnancy

Foods To Avoid During Lactation

Limit your caffeine intake to one cup of coffee per day.
Limit your caffeine intake to one cup of coffee per day.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Caffeine

Consuming too much caffeine can disturb your baby’s sleep, making him/her fussy. So, limit your caffeine intake to one cup of coffee per day. Also remember that even soda contains caffeine.

Alcohol

Consumption of alcohol should be restricted since it gets mixed with the breast milk.

Processed Foods

Avoiding processed food is the wisest decision for nursing mothers. Processed foods deteriorate healthy nutrient consumption in both, mothers and babies, and lead to nutrient deficiency.

Also Read : Abs During Pregnancy – Yay or Nay? We Ask Doctors and Experts

Follow a Healthy Post-Pregnancy Diet

Before you jump on to any other random diet post-pregnancy, here’s a suggestion for a meal plan for you.

Early Morning

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • 4-5 soaked nuts/ almonds
  • 1-2 walnuts
  • 1 Black raisin
  • Meethi/tulsi water

Breakfast

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • 2-3 pieces of raagi idli with tomato and mint chutney or
  • An omelette, 1 toast and elachi milk

Mid Meal

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • 1 til ladoo or makhana or orange/pomegranate yogurt or roasted chana chaat or fruits
  • 1 glass of coconut water

Also Read : 9 Healthy Changes All Couples Should Make Before Getting Pregnant

Lunch

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • 1 quarter plate of mint veggie pulao or chicken pulao and 1 cup of jeera raita or
  • 2 oats rotis, daal, veggies and salad

Evening Snack

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • Carrot/beetroot/spinach/celery smoothie
  • A bowl of fruits or 1 daal/besan cheela or baked sweet potato or 1 bowl of upma

Dinner & Post-Dinner

(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • Dinner: 1-2 methi rotis with 1 cup of vegetables and 1 bowl of cooked salad
  • Post dinner: Milk and ghee or turmeric milk

Follow this diet plan to provide your body with the essential nutrients that it requires post-pregnancy.

(Nmami Agarwal is a celebrity nutritionist and a dietitian.)

(FIT is now available on Telegram and WhatsApp. To receive handpicked stories on topics you care about, subscribe to our Telegram and WhatsApp channels.)

Follow our Her Health section for more stories.

    Also Watch