Diet is an important part of any person's life as food that goes in your body is what replenishes the resources lost in a day's work. The wrong kind of food will have adverse effects on the body in all sorts of ways, and that holds especially true for nursing mothers.
A mother, after carrying a baby to a full term, has to go through many hormonal and physical changes, which can be very stressful. After childbirth comes one of the other most important phases i.e. nursing and it is important to ensure that the mother gets proper nutrition during this phase. This is because it is the mother's milk that provides the baby with the required nutrients for growth as well as to build and immune system, which is why it is very important for a nursing mother to have a proper diet.
Let's look at some of the food items that should be consumed during this time:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables - These are important during the nursing period for the mother as she needs to supplement important minerals in her body such as calcium and iron. Green, leafy vegetables are a must.
- Dairy products low in fat - As the mother's body produces milk, certain minerals get drained quicker than others and a direct supplement for them would be dairy products. However, it is important to ensure that their fat content is low as this can add cholesterol and thus, may adversely affect the health of the mother.
- Lean meats - Lean meats are a great source of protein that can supplement many of the minerals and nutrients. However, rich meat-based foods and heavy red meat should be avoided. Chicken in roasted form or tikka form is also healthy proteins that can be consumed 2 - 3 times a week. Fish, especially Salmon fish, is also a healthy and rich source of omega-3 as well as high in protein.
- Legumes - Legumes are a great source of iron, which is an extremely important mineral for a nursing mother. This is also an alternative for vegetarians. Legumes are not only a rich source of iron, they are also high in protein and helps the mother to stay fit and energetic to be able to take on the additional responsibility of her new-born baby. If you wish to discuss any specific problem, you can consult a dietitian-nutritionist.