10 Foods to Eat & Avoid When You’re Breastfeeding

Food  |  July 07, 2016
  • EAT... LEAFY GREENS
    1 / 10 EAT... LEAFY GREENS

    Green and leafy vegetables are excellent sources of vitamins and nutrients like vitamin A, calcium, vitamin C and iron. Spinach and broccoli have high levels of vitamin A that can be beneficial for your newborn, even reducing his risk of death.

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  • EAT... WHOLE GRAINS
    2 / 10 EAT... WHOLE GRAINS

    Whole grains contain folic acid, a nutrient that is essential for cellular growth that’s required for a growing baby or a mother recovering from pregnancy and birth. Healthy whole grains include whole wheat, oats, buckwheat, bulgar, rye, barley, quinoa and brown rice.

    (Also read: The Difference Between Whole Grains, Brown Rice, White Rice & Other Types of Rice)

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  • EAT... LEGUMES
    3 / 10 EAT... LEGUMES

    After iron loss during birth and breastfeeding, mums need to ensure that their iron levels are sufficient to avoid anaemia. Iron-rich beans like black and kidney beans are a great source of nutrients. Plus, they contain healthy enzymes that help digestion.

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  • EAT... DAIRY FOODS
    4 / 10 EAT... DAIRY FOODS

    To meet your calcium requirements, it is important to include dairy products that are rich in calcium, like milk. Meeting the daily recommended intake of calcium will help strengthen baby’s bones and prevent the weakening of your bones caused by the increased calcium demands during pregnancy.

    (Also read: What to Eat to Build Your Bones)

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  • EAT... UNSATURATED FATS
    5 / 10 EAT... UNSATURATED FATS

    Dietary fat supports normal growth and development, and assists in the absorption of vitamins A, D, E, K and carotenoids. Fat also cushions your organs and helps maintain healthy cell membranes. Eat heart-healthy monounsaturated oils, such as olive and canola oils.

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  • AVOID... STIMULANTS
    6 / 10 AVOID... STIMULANTS

    Avoid taking stimulants such as caffeine found in coffee, tea or sodas, which can cause irritability and restlessness in you and your baby. Switch to herbal teas like fennel, chamomile and nettle tea, which are safer.

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  • AVOID... STRONG HERBS & SPICES
    7 / 10 AVOID... STRONG HERBS & SPICES

    Spicy foods might make your baby fussy, cry inconsolably or cause discomfort. Look for flavours that add zest without adding heat.

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  • AVOID... HIGH-MERCURY FISH
    8 / 10 AVOID... HIGH-MERCURY FISH

    Virtually all fish contain some mercury, a common pollutant that’s a known neurotoxin which can affect baby’s brain. Try having fish with lower mercury levels, such as canned light tuna, salmon and pollock. Avoid eating high-mercury fish like swordfish, shark and mackerel.

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  • AVOID... CITRUS FRUITS
    9 / 10 AVOID... CITRUS FRUITS

    Citrus fruits can cause gastrointestinal refluxes, fussiness and diaper rash in your baby. Consider having mangoes, pineapples or strawberries instead of oranges.

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  • AVOID... PEANUTS
    10 / 10 AVOID... PEANUTS

    If your family has a history of peanut allergies, try avoiding having peanuts until you wean your baby, else he may suffer from rashes, wheezing or hives. Consider having almonds or walnuts instead.

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