Nutrition for the Nursing Mom
A few weeks ago we posted about the most controversial topic to hit a Times cover in recent memory; Breastfeeding. Whether or not you’ve decided if breastfeeding is right for you and your little one yet, being aware of the post-pregnancy foods for the nursing mother can be quite daunting. If you are choosing to go down the nursing route, you’re still eating for two… but not completely. Still, the breastfeeding mom has to maintain a healthy, balanced diet to return to their normal body after birth and offer the best nutrition for their babies as well. Here are some great options to consider:
- Salmon: Not only is salmon loaded with proteins and other nutrients, it is packed with a fat called DHA. DHA, which is present in breast milk, plays an important role in your baby’s nervous system. The more DHA-rich foods you eat, the higher the DHA content in your milk. Furthermore, DHA may also contribute positively to your mood, lessening the chance of post-partum depression. Salmon is also considered to have the lowest mercury content compared to other fish.
- Low-Fat Dairy Foods: Aside from providing you with protein and vitamins B and D, dairy products are great sources of calcium, essential to your baby’s bone development. Whatever dairy product you choose, include at least 3 cups of it in your daily diet.
- Lean Beef: Iron-rich foods such as lean beef can increase your energy levels as you cope with the demands of a newborn. Moreover, lean beef supplies you with extra protein and vitamin B-12.
- Beans: Legumes, particularly dark-colored ones like black beans and kidney beans, are excellent sources of iron and protein. Beans are also ideal for vegetarian moms, who need non-animal source of proteins.
- Oranges: Oranges are handy and healthy sources of Vitamin C. They are great as a snack or drink it as juice.
Your diet may have to change depending on your baby’s reaction to foods. Many little ones are lactose intolerant right from the womb. What does this mean for you? No dairy until you’re done nursing! Talk to your pediatrician and your own physician about finding viable options so both of you are as healthy as possible.