You've already read all about the kind of foods you should include in your breastfeeding diet, but what about the foods you should avoid? Here is a list of foods to avoid while breastfeeding.
During pregnancy there were certain foods that you avoided either because they made you sick or because they were not recommended (think shrimps, wine and the occasional soda). Now with the baby's arrival you may be tempted to dive back into your old food habits, but if you are breastfeeding we suggest a word of caution. As a general rule eating a nutritious well-balanced meal should be enough to help you breastfeed your child well, however, there are certain foods that can cause some digestive issues or allergic reactions for your baby. So here's a list of foods that you should avoid in your breastfeeding diet.
The reason for avoiding this beverage in your breastfeeding diet plan remains the same as it was during pregnancy, caffeine. While you can easily have a cup or two a day without it effecting your baby, having too much coffee, can make your baby restless, fussy or unable to sleep. And we are sure that's the last thing you want. The same applies for tea and aerated sodas as well.
The culprit in this sweet treat too is caffeine. While the levels of caffeine in chocolate may not be as high as it is in coffee, however, excessive chocolate can end up having the same effect on your baby. So go easy on the sweet stuff if you want a fuss free baby.
While you can always enjoy seafood on occasion, try and avoid fish in your daily in your breastfeeding diet, as it tends to contain traces of mercury that in large quantities can effect your baby's brain development. While small amounts of fish, say once a week, shouldn't make any difference, we would recommend minimizing the consumption till you are feeding
Fruits such as lemon, sweet lime, oranges, kiwi should be generally avoided or taken in small quantities as they tend to cause digestive trouble for babies, especially if their digestive tract is not fully developed yet. As always you need to evaluate how your baby reacts to a certain food, as she/he maybe absolutely fine after that glass of OJ you had, however if you notice that your baby is spitting up, or being fussy more than usual, then maybe its time to go easy on these fruits and juices.
You must have heard the popular old wives tale about increasing consumption of milk in your breastfeeding diet, we want to assure you that it's a myth. Having excessive milk on the contrary could cause more trouble for your baby, as the milk enzymes from cow's milk will continue to flow into the breast milk if present in large amounts and can act as an irritant to your child's bowel. Also watch out for any rashes or skin reactions or wheezing in your baby. If so, try going off all dairy products (even soy based products) for a week to ten days to see if your child is reacting to dairy.
You may find to your surprise that your baby is unaffected by these gas inducing vegetables, however, it is wise to maintain caution before you lap up a bowl full of broccoli or enjoy that aloo gobhi. So you could start my trying small amounts of these vegetables and see how your child reacts. If all is well, you can increase the quantity slightly in a week's time and keep observing your child's digestion.
If taken in small amounts then it really shouldn't matter, but be careful about the amount of consumption of these herbs as they are known to reduce milk supply. We know you enjoy your peppermint tea and you may not be able to enjoy it as frequently, but it's a small price to pay when you see your well-fed happy baby.
If your family has a history of allergies, then you need to be especially careful while consuming these groups of foods that are known to be common allergens. Make sure you exercise caution while consuming any foods with eggs or nuts and watch closely for how your baby reacts once you have had these foods. While you may not be allergic yourself, it is quite possible your child is due to the family genes he/she shares!
No we don't mean you need to be off the spirits even after abstaining for nine whole months. You can enjoy the occasional glass of wine or beer even while you breastfeed, however, ensure that is no more than one glass, as anything above that is likely to enter your blood stream and as a result your breastmilk too. And no pumping and dumping wont help. Its best to nurse before you have that glass or express milk for your baby if you know you are going to be having more than one glass on a particular night.
Like with everything else, while there are general rules, here too, you need to exercise your judgement to see what works for your baby. Following some of these basic rules will ensure that your baby is well-fed and fuss free through out the nursing period, and that will in turn ensure that you are one happy mom too!