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Seven Must-Avoid Foods For Breastfeeding Mothers

Contributed by: Anjali Sharma

Introduction 

Given that you are currently breastfeeding, you should be on the lookout for meals that might potentially induce sensitivities in your child.

The food that a nursing woman consumes has a significant impact on the infant. During breastfeeding, it’s crucial to eat healthy meals consistently so that your infant receives enough breast milk and necessary nutrients.

After giving birth, you would want to give in to your impulses and eat a burger or drink coffee.

Several nursing mothers believe they can eat everything they want, but there are some foods and beverages you should absolutely avoid. Some meals include dangerous ingredients that can cause harm to a newborn. 

Here are five foods to restrict or avoid when nursing, along with advice on how to determine whether your diet is having an impact on your child.

Say no to seafood with high mercury levels 

These days, there are many water bodies with high mercury levels, which translates to high mercury levels in seafood.

In contrast to other seafood, which has lower amounts of mercury, shark and king mackerel have high quantities of mercury. Experts advise against eating any seafood while breastfeeding. 

Fish with a high mercury content should thus be avoided during nursing. Several types of fish to avoid including: 

Orange roughy sharksBigeye tunaKing mackerelMarlinSwordfishTilefish

Mothers who breastfeed are advised to steer clear of high mercury fish and instead consume 225 to 340 grams of low mercury fish per week to guarantee appropriate Omega-3 consumption while lowering the risk of mercury poisoning.

Caffeine 

Caffeine should be avoided since it might irritate your infant and keep them from sleeping.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises nursing moms to limit their daily caffeine intake to 300 mg, which is similar to two or three cups of coffee.

Women who are nursing should avoid energy drinks unless an authorised exception has been made by a reliable healthcare professional because these products frequently include additional vitamins and herbs in addition to high doses of caffeine.

Dairy products

Cow milk may cause intolerance in certain infants. The allergens that have entered the breast milk upset the infant when the mother consumes cow milk or dairy products. 

If your infant exhibits symptoms like colic and vomiting after ingesting dairy products, you should temporarily cease consuming them. Eczema, skin conditions, and sleep troubles can also be some visible symptoms. 

Infants who are allergic to soy also exhibit dairy intolerance. Choosing organic meat, dairy products with high-fat content, and poultry is preferable because they don’t contain any chemicals, growth hormones, or pesticides.

Herbal supplements 

It is deemed acceptable to season food with herbs and spices like cumin or basil when nursing.

However, there are certain safety issues when it comes to herbal supplements and teas because there are chances that they might not be good for nursing mothers. 

The majority of studies found no change in breast milk production, despite the fact that many women consume supplements under the assumption that it will assist in improving milk supply.

It is advisable to consult with your doctor before using a supplement.

Processed foods

When you have a baby, processed foods are exceptionally quick and simple to make. However, many such meals include chemicals and preservatives that are harmful to a developing infant.

Both allergies and newborn colic can be brought on by additives. Your infant may get irritable as well.

Your baby’s response may change negatively if you eat things that are spicy or that make you feel sick.

Sweeteners and sugar 

Overall, consuming sugar and artificial sweeteners is deemed safe as long as they are used in moderation.

The newborn is prevented from absorbing too much sugar by a number of internal obstacles.

Alcohol 

Alcohol from the mother is transferred to the baby through breast milk and has an impact on his neurological growth.

For at least two years post-delivery, you should abstain from alcohol completely. 

Consumption of alcohol should be confined to an infrequent intake of not more than 0.5 g alcohol per kg body weight of the nursing mother, advises The American Academy of Pediatrics. 

The milk-letdown response and milk secretion can be reduced when the levels are greater than that.

Final thoughts 

These foods should be absolutely avoided for the first six weeks, especially if you have allergies. The nursing mother can consume these items in moderation before quitting them completely. 

It is advised that nursing mothers restrict their intake of meals that are heavy in added sugars and processed fats since these foods are often poor in critical nutrients and may alter your child’s dietary preferences in the future. Before eliminating any item from your diet, it is essential to consult your doctor.

Moreover, you should also frequently opt for health screening. It provides you with vital insights into your health, allowing you to take necessary measures to improve it.

As an add-on, make a habit of taking preventive health checkups as they can help you in getting a complete insight into your health. This will also help you with taking measures to promote your overall well-being. 

Book The Full Body Health Checkup Today!

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