Breastfeeding a baby is important for his healthy growth and development. Breast milk contains essential nutrients a baby needs in the first six months of his life. Hence, a mother should be careful about her diet. If you have a newborn, by this time, you must have realised that breastfeeding is the most intimate part of motherhood. As breast milk is the only source of nutrition for your baby, it is needless to say that you make healthier choices. And when talking about healthy foods, how can we skip fruits? There are certain fruits that are a must-include in your diet while breastfeeding. Find out what they are. Also, know which fruits you should avoid during breastfeeding.
Fruits to Eat While Breastfeeding
The nutritional properties of breast milk will depend on your food choices. You might that that all fruits are good to consume while breastfeeding, but that’s not the case. Some fruits can be detrimental for your health and hence should be avoided. But before talking about the fruits you should avoid, find out which fruits you should eat. Here is a list of fruits that are a must-include in your diet.
1. Green Papaya
Considered a super fruit, papaya is packed with healthy minerals like fibre and papain. Green papaya is considered to be a galactagogue. Galactagogues are substances that naturally promote breast milk production. Hence, green papaya is a must-include in your diet if you are nursing. It is also a great source of non-acidic Vitamin C and acts as a natural laxative, thereby preventing constipation and promoting healthy digestion. Eating green papaya will also keep your body hydrated – which is important during breastfeeding. You can add half a cup of green papaya to a smoothie and consume fresh.
Bananas are natural laxatives too and also help digestion. Bananas are rich in potassium and fibre as well. Including fibre-rich fruits in your diet is important during breastfeeding as it can help prevent constipation. However, what makes this fruit fit for breastfeeding women is its potassium content. Potassium is important during pregnancy and post-pregnancy too. And you will need more of it while breastfeeding to maintain your fluid and electrolyte balance.
Avocados are one of the healthiest fruits and can be beneficial for the health of both the mother and the baby. If you are breastfeeding your little one, you must include avocados in your diet. Like bananas, avocados also pack in a lot of potassium in them. Eating them can also help develop your baby’s eyesight, hair quality, heart health, and digestion.
Cantaloupes are rich in vitamin K, vitamin B, fibre, potassium, magnesium, niacin, thiamin and folates. They are also rich in Vitamin C and can keep you hydrated. Cantaloupes are incredibly healthy for you and your baby, especially during breastfeeding.
Sapota (also known as chikoo) is high in calories, which makes it good for breastfeeding moms. By eating sapota, you can make up for the calories that are burned during breastfeeding. Sapota is also rich in fibre and numerous minerals and vitamins. Furthermore, it also carries numerous anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, which makes it a healthy choice for breastfeeding women.
Figs are rich in many minerals like manganese, magnesium, copper, calcium, and potassium. They are also a great source of fibre, Vitamin K, and Vitamin B6. This essentially is the reason why a number of cuisines use figs in their salads and a lot of baby food companies include figs in baby food.
Fruits That You Should Not Eat During Breastfeeding
While all fruits are generally healthy, there are some fruits that should be avoided if you are in your breastfeeding stage. Avoid consuming these six fruits if you breastfeed your little one.
Although grapefruit is one of the healthiest fruits, it is extremely acidic. This makes it extremely hard for babies under the age of 18 months to digest them. It can also burn their oesophagus and stomach lining. It can also cause extreme acidity hence should be avoided while breastfeeding. However, it will be best to avoid grapefruit un until your little one turns 3 years old.
Lime is rich in Vitamin C and is great for the body due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It can be used in various ways and can offer endless benefits. However, is a lot like grapefruit. The acidic value of lime, even after being diluted with water is extremely high, so it should be avoided during breastfeeding.
Cherries are healthy when consumed in moderation. But this stands true for a child with a fully developed stomach. You can consume cherries if you have a toddler. If you eat them while breastfeeding, your baby will develop gastric and digestive issues, which can further lead to belching, farting, and tummy aches.
Like cherries, prunes are hard to break down and digest for a child who is less than a year old. While prunes are extremely healthy, they are not recommended as your little one’s tummy may not be ready to digest them, not just yet. Eating prunes while breastfeeding can also cause your baby to become gaseous and restless, which may disturb their sleep. Prunes can also lead to tummy aches and constipation.
Kiwis are usually extremely healthy for the body. They are a rich source of essential vitamins but again they are acidic. Plus they are high in sugar, which makes them a part of ‘to avoid’ list while breastfeeding.
Strawberries too are high in sugar and your developing baby won’t have the insulin capacity to break down this sugar until he turns 3 years old. Hence, you must avoid eating strawberries while breastfeeding. We know strawberries are too hard to resist, but say no to them for your baby’s health!
Breast milk is the ideal source of nutrition for a baby up until the age of 6 months. It contains antibodies that can help your baby fight & prevent illness. By breastfeeding your little one, you can even lose weight and lower your stress levels- a win-win! In order to ensure that your milk supply is abundant and that your little one gets enough milk, you must eat healthy foods. Use our Breastfeeding Tracker to find out what you should eat and avoid during breastfeeding. You can even learn about the latching techniques and breastfeeding positions to breastfeed your baby the best way possible. Using this tracker, you can record the time period for which you breastfeed, through your right and left breasts. You can even record the amount of milk you pump in a day. Truly a breastfeeding mom’s best friend!
While breastfeeding, eat healthy foods as eating nutritious foods and fruits will ensure that you and your baby stay healthy. With the help of your nutritionist, make a diet plan you are comfortable with and are confident that you can follow. For further assistance, consult your doctor.
Also Read: Caffeine During Breastfeeding