As a breastfeeding mother, you may have gained excess weight during pregnancy, and you might want to shed off your weight. The easiest way to do this, so it would be beneficial to you and your growing baby is to focus on your diet. Eating right helps you regain your much-needed energy levels, shape and you also pass on the nutrients to your baby during breastfeeding.
Below is the list of the right foods new mothers should eat after delivery. These foods are rich in protein, vitamins, minerals, iron, calcium, and omega-3s. They will help your body system recover quickly after childbirth.
- Green vegetables
Green vegetables are rich in dietary calcium, vitamins A and C, and iron. Green veggies are also low in calories and rich in heart-healthy antioxidants, which help in losing post-pregnancy weight. Examples of these leafy greens are broccoli, spinach, and Swiss chard. These vegetables contain loads of vitamin A that are good for you and your baby.
Dark-colored legumes such as kidney beans and black beans are a high source of non-animal protein. They help in replacing lost energy during breastfeeding and are perfect for vegetarians and vegan mothers.
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- Low-fat dairy products
Dairy products are good source of protein, calcium and vitamin B. Calcium from breast milk is being absorbed by your baby for bone development, so you need to replace the lost calcium in your body by eating calcium-rich foods.
- Lean meat
Lean meats contains protein, iron, and vitamin B12, and help boost your energy levels. Lean meat is appropriate for you to make up for the draining energy levels while breastfeeding.
- Brown rice
Eat whole grain carbs such as brown rice to increase your energy levels and to provide your baby with calories. You may want to cut down the carbs to lose weight fast, but drastic changes in your weight can affect your milk production and make you feel inactive.
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Pulses are a primary element in a balanced diet. They are excellent sources of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They prevent fat from accumulating in the body. You can have green and red grams by boiling and seasoning them, or halwa so that they are easily digestible and delicious to eat.
It is said to be a nutritional dynamo for new mothers. Like any other fatty fish, salmon contains DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), a type of fat, which is useful for development of a baby’s nervous system. Although breast milk contains DHA naturally, the levels of this fat are higher in the milk of mothers who eat DHA-rich foods.
Eggs are excellent source of protein. You may have egg scramble for breakfast, hardboiled egg along with a salad for lunch, or omelet for dinner. You can choose DHA-fortified eggs to increase the necessary fatty acid levels in your milk.
- Whole wheat bread
Whole wheat bread is rich in folic acid, which is essential for the fetal development in the early stages of pregnancy. It is also an essential nutrient in the breast milk. Fortified whole grain bread and pasta are good choices to increase your daily intake of iron and fiber.
To ward off postpartum depression when breastfeeding, you need citrus fruits such as oranges, which provide you with vitamin C. You can have either the fruit or the juice. Calcium fortified drinks will benefit you.
- Whole grain cereal
Whole grain cereals make the best breakfast choice for the next morning when having a sleepless night. Most cold cereals are fortified with vitamins and minerals, which help in meeting your daily requirements. Oats are good source of calcium, iron, proteins, and carbs. They are also high in fiber, which helps get rid of constipation.
Breastfeeding mothers are at a risk of dehydration. Therefore, you need to drink lots of water to keep yourself hydrated so as to keep up your milk production and energy levels. Juice and milk may help, but none of the fluids can be as filling and hydrating as water. Take as much water as you can. Reduce your intake of caffeinated drinks as they can hinder your sleep and cause irritability in the baby.