Are you planning to breastfeed your baby? Nature is a wonderful thing. When women produce a child they typically also produce breast milk. Did you know that in order to produce enough breast milk for your baby you should pay attention to the food you eat? Breastfeeding is a natural way to nourish your baby, but if you’re not healthy then feeding the baby may deplete your stores of vitamins and minerals to supply the baby. You can consider to choose foods that will help increase breast milk production.
When you breastfeed your baby, you might want to make sure that your breast milk is as nourishing and healthy for your baby as possible. If you would like to help improve the quality of your breast milk, there is also some suggestions for you below.
How To Help Increase Breast Milk Production
Because the nutrients in your body are being shared with your baby, you might want to consider having a well-balanced diet that will provide both you and baby with quality nourishment. Fruits, vegetables, grains, protein and healthy fats are all important aspects of a healthy breastfeeding mom diet. Eating healthy will also help you keep your energy levels up.
Producing breast milk can use up some of your hydration, so in order to produce better quality milk, you should increase your fluid intake. Drink lots of water. Seriously, water is your best friend. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugary beverages. Try to drink a whole glass of water with each feeding as well as in between. For breastfeeding moms, the goal should be between 8 and 10 cups of fluid each day.
It can be hard to get enough of some vitamins and minerals while breastfeeding. Consider taking a nursing blend vitamin supplement. This will help you stay healthy and provide more quality breast milk for your baby. Talk to your doctor if you feel you might need supplements to help you with breastfeeding.
Best Food That Helps Boost Your Breast Milk Production
You can try these foods to help you increase breast milk production for your baby and keeping your own energy and health up.
- Oats- Energy, fiber, controls blood sugar
- Almonds- Omega-3 and Vitamin E
- Apricots- calcium, fiber, lactation hormones
- Carrots- Vitamin A
- Barley- increases hydration
- Asparagus- Vitamins A and K, fiber, stimulates lactation hormones
- Salmon- Essential fatty acids
- Cumin- fat burner, reduces acidity that could cause digestive irritation
- Milk- helps baby avoid allergy to milk, promotes lactation, calcium, EFA
- Garlic- Chemical compounds to increase lactation
- Fennel Seed- aids digestion, eases colic in baby
- Basil- boosts immunity levels
- Spinach- iron, calcium, folic acid
- Beet Leaves- iron, detoxifying agents
Foods to Avoid
Along with the knowledge of what to eat to help increase breast milk production, you should also know what foods to avoid. You may be surprised to learn that while you should eat plenty of fruits, oranges, berries and pineapples should be avoided. Also, lettuce, cabbage, raw onion, strong herbs, and caffeinated beverages are not good choices for breastfeeding moms. This doesn’t mean you can’t pump and splurge every now and then, but for the most part, you should try to eat and drink healthy for your baby.
Your baby will survive on your breast milk even if you don’t take these above mentioned steps. These are simply suggestions to help improve your breast milk quality. Breastfeeding can be challenging at times, so do not hesitate to contact your family doctor or a lactation consultant with your concerns. You can also find valuable information on the City of Ottawa Breastfeeding Support website.
The more you know about how your diet affects your breast milk, the better equipped you are to provide for and nourish your baby. Are there any other tips on how to increase breast milk production and to improve breast milk quality you would like to add or any foods you would put on our list? Comment below!