More thought has to go into what you eat during pregnancy than you may initially be aware. Sure there may be cravings for odd and strange things at times, but you need to become more focused on not only what you eat but also how much and when.
The difficulty is that people will often have no idea where to even begin. After all, you may be used to a certain way of eating, but when hormone levels have changed it can lead to your old diet not working for you in the same manner.
However, we don’t want you to feel stressed by it all, so the tips that follow will hopefully remove some of that stress.
Diet Plan for a Breastfeeding Mom.
In this instance, we are going to focus on one key area that has a tendency to make a mother question her entire approach to what she eats. That area is breastfeeding because your own diet is going to have a direct impact on the nutrients that you are then able to provide to your newborn child.
The Importance of Diet While Breastfeeding.
First, let’s quickly address why a pregnant diet is so important when it comes to breastfeeding in order to offer some sense of clarity.
Breastfeeding uses up a lot of nutrients, so you need to be in a position to replace them to then avoid running into problems with your own health. Also, it is able to use up a significant amount of energy, so this is also something you need to address.
Your Main Focus in Your Diet.
This is all a stressful occasion, so the last thing that we want is to complicate matters even more by taking you through a complex diet. Instead, what you need to be aware of are the key components that should form the absolute core of your diet. As long as you are able to incorporate these elements on a regular basis, then you should manage to avoid all kind of issues potentially developing.
With your diet, look at eating protein as well as incorporating elements containing iron, calcium and a wide range of vitamins. While it’s easy to get involved in taking supplements or being made aware of various minerals, those are the core components that you really cannot do without.
Furthermore, you should use healthy oils and fats. Eat more nuts and seeds due to the high levels of minerals and nutrients contained within them. A variety of fresh fruits and vegetables with lean protein should also form the basis of your main meals. Also, make sure that you drink more than enough water because that is also going to play an important role in not only your health but also that of your child.
How Often Do You Need to Eat?
As breastfeeding takes up a lot of energy, you should know where that energy is going to come from. First, some of the fat that was stored in your body is going to be transferred over into energy, but for a lot of women that will not be enough. Instead, there’s a need to take on board some extra snacks throughout the day, which is why the idea of just having three meals per day is not sufficient.
Instead, it will be better for you to go ahead and eat 5 or 6 small meals throughout the day with the idea of there being several snacks included. This stops drops in energy levels as your body will then become accustomed to an almost constant source of nutrition. At that point, breastfeeding will no longer be as difficult.
How Much Do You Need to Eat?
This is where things do get rather tricky because we are all different in both what we need and also with the speed at which our metabolism works. However, what the research shows is that women who are breastfeeding need to consume approximately 500 calories more than those who are not breastfeeding. If you want this in numbers, then you are looking at between 2000 to 2500 calories per day instead of 1500 to 2000.
Once again, we need to stress that they should be ‘healthy’ calories and don’t go ahead and try to make up for a shortfall by eating something unhealthy.
What to Avoid in a Diet.
After pregnancy, it’s common for a mother to want to lose weight and get back down close to what they weighed 9 months ago. While this is a reasonable aim to have, there are several things to take into consideration to avoid running into problems.
First, you should never do a crash diet and this is especially true when breastfeeding. In doing so, you will deplete yourself to such an extent that you will be putting your health at risk.
Next, avoid processed foods and drinking too much caffeine or alcohol. Your body and health will benefit more when you keep things as natural as possible. Cut down on eating as much sugar and eat as clean as possible.
Food and your diet during pregnancy needn’t be as complicated or stressful as you may have initially thought. Instead, with some adequate planning mixed in with a better understanding of what works well for your body will result in you feeling quite satisfied. We know that it will be extremely difficult to stop those cravings, but it’s about so much more than that. Basically, take the advice that we have included here and then expand on the various points to then see what is going to work best for you and your own individual needs.
We have not sought to provide you with a list of meal plans or giving you precise details to follow. Instead, our aim is to simply advise you on the key components to focus on as well as how much and how often you need to eat. Your diet during breastfeeding is important because do it wrong and you could affect not only your health but also possibly that of your new child.