Motherhood is definitely the best thing that happens to a women, as bringing a life in to a new world is a wonderful experience. But as rightly said there is no gain without pain, motherhood has its own challenges too which every mother has to go through.
After birth, the new born is completely dependent on the mother for protection and nourishment. So when a mother breast feeds her baby she needs to take care of her diet because what she eats will finally become a part of her breast milk too.
Research says that kids who grow up on breast milk have stronger and sharper minds. Also the milk is proven to strengthen the baby’s immune system. A lactating mother requires enough nutrients to support the development and growth of the baby and also maintain her body requirements.
What to eat while breastfeeding is an important question which most of the mothers have. She can get the nutrients either from the food she eats or from additional supplements. Well it goes without saying that a lactating women needs more nourishment than a normal woman. Her body requires extra calories to support the baby’s growth. Hence the mother should carefully choose the food that she eats.
Here is a list of food that the lactating mother should include in her diet. This list of foods are called galactogogues i.e foods that are lactation boosters.
Whole grains, cereals and legumes-Well there is no reason not to include these in your diet. They are rich in fiber, folate, iron, zinc, calcium among the others. Chickpeas, oatmeal, brown rice are good lactation boosters for nursing mommies.
Green leafy vegetables like spinach, beet leaves, dill leaves are like a blessing for the new mothers mainly because they contain good amount of Vitamin C which is required by both Baby and the mother. These are also a good source of Iron, folate, vitamin A,and E, calcium, manganese, potassium and phosphorus. These are must have in any breastfeeding diet.
Vegetables like carrots, beet, broccoli and cabbage also play a significant part in the diet of a breastfeeding mother as they are enriched with vitamins, minerals and fiber. These vegetables not only helps to increase the breast milk production, but also helps to keep the mother healthy.
Fruits like berries, tomatoes, oranges are great for a breastfeeding mother as they are tangy, pulpy, tasty and yet low in calories. Consumption of these fruits which are rich in Vitamin A and C, potassium, phosphorus, dietary fiber and folate are highly recommended for the nursing mother. These fruits are perfect either for a mid morning or an afternoon snack.
Dairy products such as milk, yogurt and cheese are a good source of calcium, vitamin D, B12, and protein which helps in keeping the mothers bones strong as well as in the Development of the baby’s bone structure.
Fish is a store house of low saturated fat, omega 3 fatty acids, DHA, EPA,protein and vitamin D. It improvises the baby’s memory, eye and brain.
Chicken contains good amount of proteins which is a building block for the muscle. It is also a good source of iron, vitamin E and A, selenium, thiamine and niacin.
Well as rightly said ” too much of everything is bad”, all these foods in the list are good for nursing mothers but do not go overboard while eating them. Moderation is the key to a healthy breastfeeding diet. Eat smart and enjoy this beautiful time of your life.