Proper Nutrition for Nursing Mothers


Even before you became pregnant, you made a conscious effort to alter your diet to include safe and healthy foods designed to prepare your body for nine months of pregnancy. Now that your child has arrived you still need to continue with a diet high in proteins, fresh produce and healthy, natural oils in order to produce a good amount of nutritious breast milk that will sustain your baby.

When you lactate, your body undergoes hormonal changes. To combat and ease the hormonal changes while providing healthy and fulfilling sustenance to your baby through your breast milk, you should refrain from eating processed foods, foods high in fat, simple sugars, acidic foods, and foods that produce gas.  The following list provides the types of foods that nursing mothers should consume to maintain their health and the health of their newborn child.

Women who choose to breast feed should eat a diet high in protein and natural essential oils.  Protein can be found from many types of foods and natural essential oils can be taken either through the food that you consume or in supplements.

High protein foods include eggs and fresh, lean meats such as beef or lamb.  Eggs can be eaten as a meal or the egg yolks can be included in a protein smoothie drink.  Marrow found in beef bones can be added to soups and stews.  Protein can also come from different types of fish.  Some of the best fish to eat are fresh seafoods such as shellfish as well as oily fish like wild salmon, and fish eggs.  Oily fish is high in vitamin D.

Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium.  Essential natural oils such as cod liver oil and coconut oil should be consumed daily.  Cod liver oil provides the most concentrated levels of Vitamin D and is responsible for promoting overall health.  Natural drinks such as fresh fruit smoothies, natural fruit and vegetable juices and lime soda are also beneficial to a nursing woman’s body.  Round out your meal with a healthy serving of whole grain rice or bread.

The majority of the following foods should really be avoided at any stage of your life.  The following is a suggestion of food types that should be avoided specifically by nursing mothers.  It goes without saying that junk food, white sugar and flour, fried foods, and foods high in trans fatty acids are just bad for you regardless of whether or not you are nursing.

Nursing mothers in particular should refrain from consuming these foods.  Just like when you were pregnant, before you gave birth, it is absolutely important not to drink alcohol or caffeine, or smoke cigarettes.  Carbonated drinks and gas producing vegetables such as broccoli, brussels sprouts and cabbage should be avoided.