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Breastfeeding Meal Plan

The Best Nutrients to Include in Your Diet While Breastfeeding 

You’re no longer pregnant, but when breastfeeding, you’re still practically eating for two. While breastfeeding, it can be challenging to come up with what to eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even for snacks. After all, as a mother, you want to make sure your baby only consumes nutritious food. The best way to make your breastfeeding diet easier is to create a breastfeeding meal plan.

You can either have your nutritionist create a breastfeeding meal plan for you or you can come up with your own by doing a little research. The good news is you don’t have to follow a strict diet in order to produce an abundant amount of nutrient-rich breast milk.

What You Need to Eat While Breastfeeding

You can get the right amount of nutrients by simply following the food pyramid. Here’s what you need to include in your breastfeeding meal plan:

Calcium

It’s important to include calcium-rich food in your diet because your body will take away this mineral from your own bones to make sure your breast milk has enough calcium for your baby. The goal is to hit 1,000 milligrams of calcium daily. 

Try:

  • 1 cup of skim milk (300 mg) and 1 cup of original Total cereal (1,000 mg) 
  • 1 cup of orange juice (150 mg), 1-ounce slice of cheese (200 milligrams) into your sandwich, a cup of fat-free yogurt (250 micrograms), and 1 cup of steamed broccoli (156 mg)
  • 500-mg calcium supplement

Folic Acid

Folic acid helps prevent birth defects in the early stages of pregnancy, but it also offers benefits through your baby’s infancy as it encourages growth. In addition, folic acid is also good for your heart. Aim to get at least 500 micrograms of this mineral each day.

Try:

  • 1cup of Special K cereal and 1cup of Kellogg's All-Bran cereal 
  • 1cup or 350 micrograms of sautéed spinach
  • 350 micrograms of black-eyed peas
  • 243 micrograms of asparagus 

Fish

Fish provides omega-3 fatty acids essential for your baby’s eyes and brain development. What’s more, omega-3 fatty acid also decreases risk of cancer and heart diseases.

Try:

  • 6-ounce salmon filet (1.7 grams) 
  • 6-ounce tuna a week 
  • A handful of walnuts (2.6 grams)
  • Flaxseed sprinkled on oatmeal
  • Omega-3-fortified eggs

Lactation Foods

Many food types have been considered as lactation foods since they increase breast milk supply. Oats, brewer’s yeast, fennel, and fenugreek are some of the most popularly known and easily available lactation foods. 

Multivitamins

Breastfeeding and almost everything that comes with motherhood can be stressful at times. Make sure you take your daily multivitamins to get at least 400 micrograms of minerals and nutrients you and your baby need. 

What You Need to Avoid Eating While Breastfeeding

While it’s important to know what to include when coming up with your breastfeeding meal plan, it’s also essential to keep the things you need to avoid in mind. 

  • Spicy food
  • Alcohol 
  • Caffeine and sugary foods

Breastfeeding has a lot of benefits, and you can make the most of the experience by making sure that you’re keeping yourself and your baby healthy and happy all the way.