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World Breastfeeding Week 2022: Common Lifestyle Factors That Affect Breast Milk

Contributed by: Anjali Sharma

Introduction

The most natural approach to feeding your kid is breastfeeding. 

When you feed your infant through breastfeeding, they latch on to your breast and connect their lips to it, and they take milk produced by your body by sucking it in.

Both you and your child can benefit greatly from breastfeeding. Your breast milk is not only a healthy option for your infant; but, it also has certain anti-infective properties that are beneficial for you as well.

Babies who are breastfed have a lesser chance of contracting a number of illnesses, such as:

DiabetesObesityAsthmaEar infections

There are many lifestyle and health factors on which the quality of breast milk depends. 

Here are some common lifestyle factors that affect breast milk:

Healthy diet

Nutrition and breast milk are tightly linked. What you put into your body on a daily basis can have an impact on both your breast milk and your baby’s feeding preferences.

This advice is to help you remain on track and provide your body with the nutrients it requires to sustain you and your little child.

When you had to be very careful about what you ate while you were pregnant, breastfeeding lets you eat a wider variety of foods with fewer limitations.

Having said that, maintain the habit of consuming a range of healthy foods from all food categories along with a combination of fruits and vegetables. Including them in your diet will give you and your baby the nourishment and energy you need.

Hydrate yourself 

About 90% of breast milk is water. 

Although studies have shown that the mother does not need to consume any more fluids than what is required to quench their thirst, doctors advise breastfeeding mothers to consume three to four litres of water each day.

State of dehydration and consuming insufficient liquids can have a bad effect on your health. In order for your body to perform at its best, it is crucial to make sure you are getting enough fluids.

Caffeine 

Be careful to keep your daily caffeine intake to 500 mg if you often grab a coffee cup or an energy drink to beat the exhaustion and post-partum stress.

This is due to the fact that newborns can act out more or become more wakeful and cranky if caffeine is present in the breast milk they consume.

You can replace caffeine with an energy-boosting smoothie or shake to beat the low energy and exhaustion.

Smoking and alcohol consumption 

It’s advisable to stay away from alcohol during breastfeeding. 

Alcohol can reduce the amount of milk you produce. Be careful to wait at least 4 hours before breastfeeding.

To feed your infant later, you can also pump milk before you have a drink. It is important to consult your physician before consuming alcohol.

It is best for you and your unborn child if you stop smoking as soon as you can. Smoking can contribute to problems with milk let-down, colic, and insufficient milk supply.

To protect your infant from the toxins that smoking leaves behind, keep smoke away from your child and change your clothing.

The health of your infant can also be in jeopardy by secondhand smoke from adults smoking nearby.

Medications 

Almost all drugs that are in your blood will, to some extent, travel into your breast milk. 

Most medicines are recommended to newborns at modest doses and offer no significant danger. However, there are few situations when medicines can concentrate in breast milk.

Only a few medications put nursing infants in substantial clinical danger. In general, it is advised to avoid using antineoplastics, illicit substances, certain anticonvulsants, ergot alkaloids, and radiopharmaceuticals, and to keep an eye on your amiodarone, cyclosporine, and lithium levels.

Final thoughts 

Breastfeeding is an important part of motherhood and enhancing the child’s overall health. 

Stem cells, which develop into various types of body cells like brain, heart, kidney, or bone tissue, are present in breast milk.

Additionally, antibodies and living white blood cells in breast milk aid in your baby’s ability to fight off infections.

So, it is crucial to focus on your lifestyle habits like a healthy diet, reduced alcohol consumption, regular exercise, a proper sleep cycle and medications that can affect breast milk. 

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.

Book The Full Body Health Checkup Today!

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