Taken from PhilStar.com (Updated October 6, 2011 - 12:00am)
If you’re a breastfeeding mom or planning to be
one, you should know that one of the most important things you need to
breastfeed your baby successfully is proper diet.
Although the body will still create breast milk that is perfect for
your baby even if you eat unhealthy food, if you don’t eat right, you
will be sacrificing your own health, and that won’t be good for baby
So what and how should you eat when you’re breastfeeding? Here are some dos and don’ts:
Don’t count your calories. Not while you’re nursing, and
especially not on your first two months. While the quality of your milk
is unlikely to suffer with too few calories in your diet, the quantity
of your milk could be affected, and “lack of milk supply” is one of the
most common reasons women give on why they have to stop breastfeeding
earlier than they would like.
Don’t drink alcoholic beverages. While a social drink now and
then is okay, be aware that alcohol does enter your bloodstream and it
does affect your milk letdown reflex even if you’ve just had one
The biggest danger about drinking alcohol while nursing, though, is
not about your milk but about your sleep. A lot of nursing moms co-sleep
with their baby, and while it is usually unlikely for you to smother
your baby in your sleep, the risk gets magnified when you are under the
influence of alcohol.
Do limit your caffeine. You don’t need to totally cut your
morning coffee from your diet, but if you drink more than 300 mg of
caffeine — around 12 ounces of caffeinated coffee — your baby might
ingest more caffeine than he can easily break down and excrete. It may
not keep him awake, as that is not how caffeine affects children, but it
will shorten his sleep, and that will impair your baby’s proper growth
Incidentally, it’s not just coffee you should be on guard against.
Several energy drinks, teas, and softdrinks — even fruit-flavored ones —
have significant amounts of caffeine, so beware.
Don’t get dehydrated. Drink more fluids: water, soup, or juice. You need to replace all that water that comes out of your body as breast milk.
By the way, this is one reason why caffeine and alcohol and
breastfeeding don’t quite mix — those two liquids have a mild diuretic
effect, and the last thing you want when you’re breastfeeding is to keep
peeing out all that valuable water. (It can’t be fun either if you need
to pee three times while you’re in the midst of a breastfeeding session
with your baby.)
Do eat different flavors of food. Yes, you can even eat spicy
food if you like. Since the food you eat affects the taste of your milk,
eating different flavors will help your baby be less of a picky eater
when he grows up.
Of course, if you notice that a specific kind of food makes your baby
colicky, then stop eating that food. But don’t ban anything from your
kitchen just because somebody told you it will make your baby gassy —
that someone could very well be wrong.
Do be alert for allergies. If your baby gets rashes after
you’ve eaten something, or if his breathing becomes labored, or if his
stools turn green, your baby might be allergic to the food you’ve
consumed. Stop eating it immediately and get your child to your
pediatrician to be examined.
As you can see, with just a few small and easy adjustments in your
diet, you and your baby can get the most out of breastfeeding. And if
you need additional help in terms of breast milk collection and storage,
you can trust Philips Avent with its high-speed no-pain breast pumps
and easy-to-clean breast milk storage cups.
Philips Avent’s quality products can be found at the infant section
of leading department stores and hypermarkets nationwide. To learn more
about Philips Avent products, go to www.philips.com.ph or like it on Facebook at PhilipsAventPH.
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