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Eat a Nutritious, Well-Balanced Diet and Lose Weight during Breastfeeding

Posted Feb 21 2012 12:26pm

Women carry the ability to produce breast milk to feed their infants. Breast milk is perfect for infants and gives them a marvelous, healthy start in life. Breastfeeding women require an increased amount of nutrients and calories in maintaining their breast milk supply. Breastfeeding women should always eat healthy with including protein, grains, fruits, vegetables and sometimes a multivitamin in their diets. Breastfeeding moms have to keep in mind that everything they bring into their bodies should be in conjunction with a healthy diet for their babies. The problem sometimes stems with breast feeding moms forgetting themselves in the equation.

I want to examine women’s nutritional needs that are breastfeeding and provide practical suggestions for vitamin supplements, drink recommendations and useful guidelines for helping breastfeeding moms lose the extra baby fat. I will touch upon foods, drinks and medications that should be limited while breastfeeding your child.

Breastfeeding and nutrition
One must always keep in mind while breastfeeding that nutritional and energy requirements exceed that of women who are not breastfeeding. Do you remember when you were expecting and you were consistently told “You are eating for two?” Well, breastfeeding is no different. Women who breastfeed typically require a higher calorie intake daily in obtaining the proper food to feed their babies on a daily basis.

How many fluids can I consume daily?
You are not alone with wondering how many fluids you can consume daily while breastfeeding. This issue proves popular with the population of breastfeeding moms. It proves prudent to say that women should drink when they are thirsty (this does not apply to alcohol, sugary beverages and energy drinks). Ensure you reduce daily caffeine intake. Caffeine has been known to make babies cranky, and this can make for a cranky mom.

Losing weight while breastfeeding
Most women will lose the extra weight gained after pregnancy. Some women lose the weight slowly with others experiencing a longer time to lose weight. Moderate exercise with adjusting to smaller eating habits will not affect the amount of breast milk you provide for your baby.

The following are excellent exercises that you can do with your baby that can help you lose weight while breastfeeding:
Stroller walk/jog – Babies need to get out of the house just as much as mom does. Take the baby and put him or her in the stroller. Go for a walk with pushing the stroller and let the baby relax and enjoy the fresh air.
Dancing with baby – Take a “snuggie” and put the baby inside. These products position the baby close to your body while placing them in fixed positions. Put on your favorite music and moderately dance. The baby is happy and mom is happy with listening to her favorite music. Tons of mothers have claimed that this practice puts their babies to sleep.
Bench pressing with baby – Simply lie on your back and secure the baby above your chest. Your arms should prove straight. Lower your elbows and keep your arms to your side. Extend your arms up and repeat.

Foods to avoid or limit while breastfeeding
When the doctor informs you that you have to increase your calorie intake in order to produce healthy milk for your baby, this should never involve eating binges and eating virtually everything in sight. While breastfeeding your baby, you should ensure to eat foods that are beneficial for not only you, but the baby. There are also foods and beverages that one should avoid while breastfeeding.

Eating fish
Let us face it, fish is considered a delicacy with some, and it proves ok to eat fish but in moderation. The huge concern about breastfeeding mothers eating vast varieties of fish is that shellfish (popular with for anyone who enjoys Cajun food) and nearly all fish contain traces of what is called “mercury”. The average woman who is not breastfeeding does not have to concern themselves with the “mercury” factor, but for breast feeding women mercury can increase health risks for your baby.

It has been recommended by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) that breastfeeding or pregnant women:
• Avoid eating Mackerel, Tilefish, Swordfish and Shark. The fish contain high levels of mercury when compared to other popular fish delicacies.
• Breastfeeding moms can eat shrimp, light tuna, salmon and catfish. Avoid white tuna because it contains a higher level of mercury.

Other foods
Other foods to be avoided during pregnancy are soft cheeses, meat spreads and deli meats. The reasoning for this is due to what is called listeria bacteria. Listeria can cause illness in adults, and it can prove fatal for infants in the womb. If you are breastfeeding, there is no need to worry about Listeria because it cannot be passed through breast milk.

Vitamin requirements while breastfeeding
If you eat well-balanced meals and snacks, you typically will not require a vitamin supplement while breastfeeding. Let us face it, not everyone can eat healthy, and if this applies to you, then it is highly recommended that you ask your doctor, and pediatrician about taking a vitamin supplement to make up for nutrients not received on a daily basis for you and your baby.

Breastfeeding can cause a temporary reduction in bone mass. You can make up for this loss with consuming more calcium while breastfeeding. Do not worry about the decrease in bone mass because as soon as you stop breastfeeding, your body will adapt and recover the mass lost during this period. Some wonderful sources of calcium are dairy products such as milk, yogurt, spinach, cottage cheese and hard cheese.

Women who have not been diagnosed with iron deficiency anemia after giving birth and who breastfeed typically do not have menstrual cycles up to six months after delivery. If this is the case, iron supplements are not administered. On the other hand, women who are diagnosed with iron deficiency anemia require iron supplements. These supplements are sometimes over the counter or doctor prescribed.

Vitamin D
Breastfeeding women need minimally 800 IU daily of vitamin D. This proves beneficial for women who live in areas where the temperature proves cold, and dark. Milk is a significant source of Vitamin D and women can take a calcium supplement plus vitamin D supplementation to obtain the necessary nutrients warranted for breastfeeding.

Safe medications while breastfeeding
Medications are generally safe while breastfeeding, but there are exceptions. It proves best to consult a doctor about the possible implications of taking any medication (prescription or non-prescription) while breastfeeding.

Medications to avoid while breastfeeding
It has been proven that some medications can be hazardous to your baby while breastfeeding and should be avoided at all costs. Illegal drugs are not safe for breastfeeding mothers or any one for that matter. Women who are habitual drug users are asked by medical professionals not to breastfeed their babies. The reason behind this is because the drugs can be passed to babies during the breastfeeding process. It is advised that women who breastfeed avoid using illegal drugs. Breastfeeding mothers are warned against the repercussions of using certain birth control pills when breastfeeding their children. There are types of birth control that doctors prescribe to breastfeeding moms; progesterone-only birth control pills, injections and IUD’s have been found to affect milk supply.

Tobacco products
The repercussions from second-hand smoke have been in the limelight often in society. In the past, second hand smoke was not considered a health risk. Research has proven that second hand smoke can cause a variety of ailments that can be passed through the milk supply to infants. Ailments such as ear infections, bronchitis, SID (Sudden Infant Death), asthma and other serious ailments prove dangerous and sometimes fatal to breastfeeding babies. You must stop or minimally reduce your tobacco dependence in order to reduce the health risks involved for your baby.

Do not ever drink alcohol while breastfeeding your baby. If you do drink alcohol during this period, there is a small percentage of alcohol that can be transferred to the baby. Other medical sources have suggested that women can drink alcohol as long as they reduce the drink to one serving of alcohol while breastfeeding. If you enjoy drinking alcohol, you discuss this topic in full with your doctor.

Breastfeeding your baby is a joyous occasion and proves ideal for bonding with your little one. Please ensure that you take specific notes of the information in this article. Where this article is written as an unofficial guide to help breastfeeding mothers, do not overlook the opportunity to communicate with your doctor if you have any questions.

Author Bio: The article is written by Jeffery Morgan, Jeff is a health enthusiast and also and has great knowledge of diet and nutrition, If you want to know more about cardio, weight loss, weight gain then you should refer to how to get ripped fast and get ripped fast .

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