BEST DIET CHART FOR LACTATING MOTHER’S
It’s no secret that the newborn baby derives all the nutrition from the mother’s milk. So, the mother’s nutrition and diet are equally important to the baby, if not more. Whatever the mother eats is being utilized in lactation. So having a wholesome diet becomes more important during this time than ever in a women’s life. Women search on the internet, for ‘lactating mother’s diet chart’ and get lost for hours, without gathering some solid information in the end. Budding Star would like to end the confusion, once and for all. We are sharing lactating mother diet chart Indian for Indian mothers. This vegetarian diet plan for breastfeeding mothers is easy to follow and includes food items that are easily available in your kitchen.
This article is for new Mothers who breastfeed their baby and for To-be Mothers. The post describes Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers. Now days, most of the mothers opt to breastfeed as breast milk provides best nutrition to the baby. Even WHO recommends that breast milk should be continued to be part of a child’s diet, up to 2 years of age and beyond. Before describing the Food chart for breastfeeding mothers, let’s read the benefits of breastfeeding.
It’s no secret that the newborn baby derives all the nutrition from the mother’s milk. So, the mother’s nutrition and diet are equally important to the baby, if not more. Whatever the mother eats is being utilized in lactation. So having a wholesome diet becomes more important during this time than ever in a women’s life. Women search on the internet, for ‘lactating mother’s diet chart’ and get lost for hours, without gathering some solid information in the end. Budding Star would like to end the confusion, once and for all.
Benefits of breastfeeding a baby:
- Breast milk contains all the nutrients the infant needs for proper growth and development.
- It promotes brain development of baby.
- Breast milk is a great way to improve and increase immunity in kids, because it contains antibodies and white blood cells, which boost the immune system and help the body to fight against diseases.
- It also helps Mothers in shedding their post- pregnancy weight more easily.
Thus, it is recommended to breastfeed a baby at least up to 6 months. It can be extended along with solid diet, and it is no harm if one pursues breastfeeding up to 2 years of age and beyond. Do remember Moms! Your baby’s growth is the utmost thing and it all depends on you. So, go ahead and nurse your baby for as long as it feels right to you. The longer you breastfeed, the greater the protective effects.
We all know whatever a mother eats a food, a baby can taste it in her milk. So, in a way a baby eats whatever goes in his/her mother’s tummy. Thus, a breastfeeding mother need to be very cautious about her diet. But it doesn’t mean that anything you eat or drink while breastfeeding can cause colic (indigestion) to your baby. There could be many other reasons of colic like if your baby not being latch on well, or swallowing milk too fast, and inhaling too much air.
Before penning down Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding mothers, let us first find the list of foods that you should include and avoid while Breastfeeding.
Foods to include in Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers:
Those days are gone now when a mother was made to eat khichdi and porridges for months post-delivery. But now, diet plan for lactating mother includes all the best part of traditional and modern diet. Let’s find out list of foods that can be included in Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding mothers.
So, here’s an Indian diet chart for lactating mothers:
Add Masoor dal, green moong dal, paneer, and kidney beans to your diet if you want protein in your diet. If you are looking for a vegetarian diet plan for lactating mothers, pulses have to be there. Every post-partum Indian diet during breastfeeding should have protein in it.
Non-Vegetarians Mothers can include eggs, fish, and boiled chicken as per your preference. All include a lot of protein to nourish and support your baby’s growth and to have a steady supply of milk.
*Avoid curd in the first two months after delivery and can start consuming it from 3rd month onwards.
When you breastfeed, your body experiences plenty of loss of fluids as breast-milk comprises 90% water. To make it up this loss, a lactating mother should consume enough liquids. You should have at least 8 glasses of water in a day. Intake of liquids also helps in milk production. If it is not enough, it may lead to dehydration, lesser production milk, constipation, dry skin, etc.
You can take water (fennel seeds, ajwain), coconut water, vegetables soups, spinach soup (good source of iron), bottle gourd, beetroot and carrot juice (good source of iron). To quench your thirst, add mint or strawberry in your regular water. You can include vegetables and fruits like watermelon that have high water content in your diet.
You can have herbal teas with safe ingredients like fennel seeds, ajwain, black pepper, etc. It helps in proper digestion and shed some fat also.
*It is recommended to drink liquid half an hour prior before breastfeeding your baby as it makes you thirstier.
3. Whole grains:
They provide essential minerals which are necessary for you and your growing baby. Also, it is easy in digestion for breastfeeding mother.
You can include whole wheat flour, oats, Porridge (daliya), brown rice, quinoa, ragi, museli, khichdi, etc. in your diet chart.
* You can use sprouted grains in place of usual dry grains as they are much healthier. Try Wheat/Ragi/Bajra/Jowar. Make flour of sprouted and dried grains and use it for making porridge.
You need to replenish your iron stores in the body after delivery. So, it is essential to include iron rich foods in the Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers.
Vegetarian Mothers can have dry beans, turnip greens, kale, black eyed peas, green leafy vegetables, wholegrain bread and cereals and green peas. If you will cook food in iron vessels with tomatoes, this can also provide some iron content. Almonds and walnut are again good sources. Jaggery is a good source too.
Non-vegetarian Mothers can have liver and organ meat of chicken, meat for replenishing iron content in body.
Vitamins help in developing baby’s growth and boost milk production. Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers should include lots of green vegetables and fruits. You can have bottle gourd, spinach, fenugreek, pumpkins, Tinda, carrots, and beetroots. Fruits like apple, pear, pomegranate, papaya, etc. should be included in your diet. Nursing mothers need more amounts of Vitamin C so a diet filled with strawberries, broccoli, potatoes.
This nutrient is very crucial for the right growth of a baby’s bones hence, it should have a place in the diet chart of a breastfeeding mother. Calcium is found in spinach, kale, and mustard greens as well as turnip tops. Milk and all milk-based products like paneer are also durable in an Indian diet for breastfeeding mothers.
7. Galactagogues Food:
These are the foods that are a must because they boost milk production in a lactating mother. You can get good milk production if you eat chickpeas, papaya, whole grains, and legumes as a part of the diet plan of lactating mothers.
A good diet also means a break for exhausted mommy’s secrets of a happy mother that is not emphasized enough for some reason. Breastfeeding can be easy for one mother but difficult for another, it depends, and hence one of the biggest motherhood challenges.
What should a lactating mother eat?
- A mother should include protein foods like meat, chicken, fish, eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, and seeds.
- She must intake three servings of vegetables, including dark green and vegetables each day.
- She should eat seasonal fruits per day.
- She must add whole grains such as wheat bread, wheat pasta, cereal, and oatmeal in her diet plan.
- She must drink plenty of water and fluids.
- Vegetarian diets are a good option for breastfeeding mothers. If you don’t eat meat then you can add other sources of iron and zinc to your diet. Add beans, nuts, seeds, and dairy products. You can also intake B12 supplements to avoid any deficiency.
How Much Quantity to Intake?
While breastfeeding, mothers need extra calories. A diet plan for lactating mother ensures there is enough quantity of calories that is recommended for them. Make sure to take the amount suggested to produce a healthy supply of milk. Babies also need calories to grow healthier. These calories will naturally be taken by the babies from mother’s milk only. You can cut your calories intake when your baby starts eating solid foods.
Mothers Should Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine
The best way to give your baby a healthy life is to avoid intake of alcohol but still, you wish to have drinks then wait for at least 3 hours after each serving before feeding your baby. After 3 hours alcohol levels go down so, it is gone from your milk too.
Caffeine is also bad for your and your baby’s health. If your baby is asleep and feeling irritated that means you have to avoid caffeine intake.
Foods mothers must increase
In order to increase your breast milk production, you need to increase the intake of protein present in meat, chicken, eggs, lentils, fish, legumes, and healthy fats present in olive oil, nuts, fruits, oily fish, and dried seeds. To ensure good health for yourself and your baby, oily fish is a good option to go with.
Recipes to increase production of breast milk
- Pumpkin Spice Lactation Smoothie
This delicious smoothie is packed with nutritional values which will naturally boost your milk supply.
- 1 ½ cups unsweetened coconut milk (or other milk of choice)
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
- 1 carrot (chopped)
- 1/2 cup mango (fresh or frozen)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon cloves
- 1 tablespoon collagen peptides (optional)
- Honey (or other desired sweetener) to taste (optional)
- Handful of ice cubes (optional)
- In a blender or food processor add all the ingredients
- Blend it until a creamy and smooth consistency occurs
- You can add coconut whipped cream or crushed walnuts (optional)
- Drink it!
- Lactation Overnight Oats
A versatile recipe that is a great option for working or busy moms. You can add nutritional toppings like walnuts, chia seeds or fresh fruits.
- ½ Cup Rolled Oats
- 1 Cup Milk of Choice (Almond, Soy, etc)
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- ½ tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 2 Tbsp nuts/seeds (almond slices, walnuts, etc)
- 1-2 Tbsp sweetener of choice (such as honey, maple or agave syrup)
- Optional add-in ingredients: Fresh fruit, chia and/or flax seeds, nut butters, dark chocolate, or cocoa powder
- 1 clean jar with lid
- Take a jar and mix it with all the ingredients and if you want to put any add ins. Stir it until completely combined. Cover the jar with the lid and leave it overnight.
- Eat it with your favorite accompany like healthy milk, fresh fruits, ground nuts, etc that you prefer. Enjoy!
Allergies Babies Can Get
In very rare cases, breastfeeding babies may develop some food allergies to the foods their mother intake. Symptoms from which you can guess are green stool, mucus-like bloody stools. Many allergies are caused by dairy products, soy products, and eggs. Babies also develop allergies to different fruits and veggies also.
As soon as your baby starts gaining weight and is not anaemic that means now your baby is not having any allergies to milk and other food items. So it is advised to a breastfeeding mother plan her diet according to her baby’s health. You can also visit a dietician that will help you in planning your diet chart.
Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers can include Galactagogues food such as:
- Whole grains especially oatmeal
- Green leafy (spinach, brocolli, kale)
- Fennel seeds, cumin seeds
- Garlic and ginger
- Chickpeas, nuts, almonds, flax seeds
- Dry fruit Gur Chikki (source of iron and protein)
Foods to avoid in Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers:
A breastfeeding mother needs to very careful while taking her diet. Some foods are not easy to digest and some are not good for baby’s efficient growth and health. Follow the mentioned above list of foods to be avoided in Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding mothers.
Now when we know what food is to be included and avoided, here is Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers for your reference.
The Breastfeeding period can be alienated in 3 stages as below:
Stage 1. First 40 days (post-delivery)
Stage 2. After 40 days till 6 months (Remaining exclusive breastfeeding period)
Stage 3. Extended breastfeeding (ideally till 2 years)
Stage 1. Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers for First 40 days:
Immediate after delivery, the next 40 days are very crucial for a mother and baby. Extra care should be taken as a mother experiences hormonal and physical changes in her body. Her body is healing; regaining strength and producing milk.
Indian Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers :
|Food Items||CALORIE (KCAL)||PROTEIN (GMS )||Tips and Nutri-fact|
|Morning : 6:00-7:00 AM|
|Herbal Tea/Milk||100||5||Herbal Tea increases the metabolism rate. Milk lowers down the stomach’s acidic rush that improves the digestion.|
|Panjeeri (Small Half Bowl)||200||10||Proportion to make Panjeeri: Wheat and Nut ratio should be equivalent i.e. 1:1 ratio for better digestion and to avoid constipation.|
|Soaked Almonds (10)||100||8||Rich in Protein|
|Breakfast: 09:00 AM|
|Porridge/Upma/Stuffed roti (without oil)/Oats with milk/Cheese Sandwich/Bread Omlette||300*||10-15||*The mentioned intake of protein & cal should be there in breakfast as this much amount is required by Breastfeeding mothers.|
|Non- Citrus Fruits such as Apple, Pomegranate||40||Provides Roughage for healthy bowel|
|Lunch: 1:00-2:00 PM|
|Chapatti (2)/Rice with Green veggies (1 Bowl) & Lentil (1 bowl)||450||16||Green veggies help in better digestion & lentil increases the protein content and breast milk. If you consume paneer in diet then lentil should be avoided as simultaneously two variants of protein will increase calorie intake which is not advisable.|
|Herbal Tea/Milk with 2 Atta Buiscuits||100||2|
|Clear vegetable soups (green veggies/spinach/ tomato)||100||2||Contains iron and folic acid to recover the blood loss while delivery and increases milk production.|
|Dinner: 8:00-9:00 PM|
|Chapatti/Rice with Green veggies (1 Bowl) & Lentil (1 bowl)||450||15||Take jaggery after dinner to increase iron absorption.|
|1 glass of milk||100||2||Increases milk production during night time and good for sound sleep.|
- Continue with Folic acid (500 mcg) daily.
- Take Ajwain water after half an hour of meals for healthier digestion.
- Walk for at least 10-15 minutes daily at home only after lunch and dinner.
Note: Indian Diet plan for breastfeeding mothers is framed to just give you an idea about the food items that you can include. You can make changes in timings and according to your acceptability for that food item.
Stage 2. Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers after 40 days till baby is 6 months old:
Once baby turns 5 months old:
- You can have all kinds of beans, potatoes, citric fruits, idli/dosa made up of well fermented batter, onion, even moderate black pepper. Such introduction of foods in the diet will enable baby’s digestive system ready for direct solids as you can start feeding solids once baby turns 6 months old.
- All the extra breakfast or snacks can be skipped slowly now.
*At this stage don’t just rush in for weight loss as it may affect breast milk production and your health too. Remember Moms…. Exclusive Breastfeeding helps in natural weight loss….!!
Stage 3. Diet Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers after 7 months till baby is 2 years old:
From now onwards, there is no restriction on the diet but it should be healthy one. You can now skip those extra snacks in between your meals. Now your baby is on solids too, so breast milk will be consumed less by him.
Vegetarian diet plan for breastfeeding mothers:
An alternative diet chart for breastfeeding mother that you can follow which has a combination of different foods that you should include in your mealtimes.
|Food Items||CALORIE (KCAL)||PROTEIN (GMS )||Tips and Nutri-fact|
|Dried fruits||150-200||8||Rich source of minerals and can help boost baby’s immunity.|
|Breakfast: 09:00 AM|
|Poha, 2 slices of whole wheat bread, 1 glass of skimmed milk||362||16|
|Apple, Grapes, Oranges||52-60||Rich in Vitamin C|
|Lunch: 1:00-2:00 PM|
|2 chapati, 1 serving of vegetables, 1 cup of salad, 1 cup of rice and 1 glass of raita||347||19.6||Veggies are a rich source to gain more vitamins and nutrients and can replenish the amount of nutrients that is needed while making milk.|
|A glass of milk with 4-5 crackers||162.3||7.8|
|Dinner: 8:00-9:00 PM|
|2 chapatis, 1 serving rice and 1 serving of green leafy vegetables||328||13.6||Green leafy vegetables are rich in iron, calcium and other minerals that help in an increase in lactation. Avoid highly processed food and caffeine intake in your meals.|
|1 glass of milk||100||2||Helps enhance your sleep and provides the nutrients your baby needs.|
- It is important to walk for 20-30 minutes every day to keep you fit and for proper digestion. You can walk at home only.
- Burping your baby is as important as feeding your baby. Try Burping your baby before switching breasts. Two common positions you can follow for burping: over your shoulder or sitting on your lap.
- Take at least 8 hours of sleep every day. It is difficult to complete the sleep with the baby but try to sleep in the afternoon or any time when your baby is also asleep.
- If in case of any digestion issues in mothers or babies is too cranky (cries a lot), then do consult your gynecologist or pediatrician.
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1. What impact does your diet have on breastfeeding?
For the first six months a baby completely depends on the mother’s breast milk for nutrition and hydration. A healthy diet for the mother ensures you are passing on essential nutrients to your baby. A breastfeeding mother needs to maintain a good diet rich in protein calcium, iron, iron and Vitamin D. Follow a good vegetarian diet plan for breastfeeding mothers that give you well-balanced meals encompassing all of these vital nutrients. Eating well during your breastfeeding period will help you with your extra nutrient needs that a new mom requires. It is better to eat regular balanced meals, that has foods from all food groups with fresh vegetables and seasonal fruits.
2. Which fruits are most suitable for breastfeeding?
Ensure you are including enough fruits in your lactating mother diet chart Indian. You can include Indian seasonal fruits. Some of the fruits that can be added in a lactating mother diet chart are bananas, mangoes, sapota, and apricots. You could also include strawberries, blueberries, figs cantaloupes if they are in season. Breast milk or feeding mother diet chart alone is like a superfood for babies because it carries all the essentials that a baby will need for its growth and development. These best fruits for lactating moms will ensure the baby is provided with essential nutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins throughout the first six months.
3. Do breastfeeding mothers require additional calories?
Breastfeeding mothers and lactating moms generally need more calories to meet their nutritional needs. Follow vegetarian diet plan for breastfeeding mothers which allows an additional 330 to 400 kilocalories (kcal) per day that is recommended for well-nourished breastfeeding mothers.
Eating a well-balanced meal with fresh vegetables and fruits matters. You don’t need to pile up on your plate but a well-balanced nutrition-rich diet will help you and your baby. Mother’s milk is called the elixir which not only provides nutrition for the baby but also helps in their brain and bone development.
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