Advice For A Breastfeeding Mom
MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, MBBS
32 years experience
Health advice for a breastfeeding mom
Breastfeeding mothers need to be conscious and aware of their diets. How the mother eats is how the child gets its nutrition. While they do not need any major changes from what they were eating during the pregnancy, a few adjustments are advised. A few basic adjustments in daily routine are enough. They are:
1. Eat very well - Eat a balanced diet to suit your health. Remember, first it is important to meet your nutritional needs. Only when you are eating well would the quality and quantity of your milk be ideal for your baby. Do not diet under any circumstance. We understand you wish to lose all the pregnancy weight soon, but remember, you child is your priority now. When you diet, your body will start drawing on its reserves. This will affect milk production. By dieting, you will also lack the amount of stamina you need to take care of your baby. Be aware that feeling extra hungry during breastfeeding is normal. Your body is working around the clock. Eat small meals at regular intervals to keep your hunger satisfied, your weight concern at bay and your body strong.
2. Don't count your calories - Not until you are breastfeeding. You need at least 500 calories more than you did when you were not breastfeeding. Don't let this shock you, your child will be feeding off you. There are other ways to regulate your weight and lose the extra pounds gained during pregnancy, do not compromise on food at all.
3. Do not rush to exercise - Consult your doctor and ask for suitable exercises for your body. You might have stitches which are yet to dry, so don't be hasty. Get your workout regime planned professionally and under guidance.
4. Do not avoid fats - Eat healthy foods and opt for good fats. Foods that are good for you and for milk production are a big yes. Foods which do not contribute in any positive way can be done without. They will only harm you in the long run.
5. Avoid alcohol - Stay away, and if you do want to indulge consult your doctor. An occasional drink is usually okay, still it is better you abstain altogether until you stop breastfeeding. And if you do have a drink, feed at least after two hours.
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