Top 5 Foods To Avoid During Breastfeeding
Just like there are certain foods that are beneficial to you and your baby’s health, there are also some foods that won’t do much good when it comes to a breastfeeding diet. While they are not harmful in a regular diet, they might not be suitable during breastfeeding. In addition to avoiding these foods, make sure you limit alcohol and caffeine to a bare minimum. Here are some foods a diet for breastfeeding mothers should avoid:
- Spicy foods – Let’s face it. Hot peppers, garlic, curries, and garam masala are a great way to zing up any meal. But what may be savory to you may not be so pleasant for your baby. Spicy foods tend to change the flavor of your breast milk, so you may face difficulty in latching. Also, babies have sensitive tummies, and they may not be able to handle the heat. We are not stopping you from adding some zing to your plate, but it could lead to an upset tummy of your little one.
- Peppermint, Parsley, and Sage – While these are certainly not common herbs that are used in everyday cooking, research shows that it may reduce milk supply in some women. As with everything else in life, it is better to be safe than sorry.
- Cruciferous Vegetables – These include broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and certain types of beans. They may be healthy, but they are also notorious for causing gas for both baby and mother.
- Garlic – Your breast milk will taste like the foods you have been consuming. However, most babies do not like the taste of garlic. If your baby refused the teat after you ate garlic, perhaps it’s time to start avoiding it.
- High-mercury fish – We recommended salmon because it is low in mercury levels. Other species, like king mackerel and swordfish can be harmful for your child as they contain high levels of mercury, which will show up in breast milk. Whenever possible, choose low mercury fish like tilapia, trout and salmon. Also, avoid sushi due to the possibility of bacteria and parasites.
In addition to the above, limit chocolate to a minimum as it contains trace amounts of caffeine. Limit coffee to 2 cups a day, or if you’re a tea person, 4 cups a day. Caffeine in these beverages can make it to your breast milk, and interfere with your baby’s sleep cycle. When it comes to alcohol, timing and moderation are key. Alcohol takes between one to two hours to metabolize, so you can enjoy one drink after your last feed, when your baby has gone to sleep for the night.