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What to eat when you’re breastfeeding

Make sure you’re consuming a balanced, nutrient-rich diet to stay healthy and make high-quality breast milk for your precious one.

3 minit
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By Danial Ahmad , Author
Jan 27, 2021

When you’re breastfeeding it’s important to consume a balanced diet by eating appropriate amounts of foods from each of the main food groups. This will make sure you’re both getting the wide variety of nutrients you need to stay healthy. Eating well during this time not only supports your child’s healthy development, it also nourishes your body while it does the incredible job of making breast milk.

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Top 9 milk-changing nutrients 

Scientific studies have shown that, among the variety of vitamins and minerals you both need, there are nine key nutrients that can influence the quality of your breast milk. Eating foods containing these nine nutrients can increase their concentrations in your breast milk – great news for your growing child! 

  1. Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)
  2. Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
  3. Vitamin B6
  4. Vitamin B12
  5. Vitamin A
  6. Vitamin D
  7. Iodine
  8. Selenium
  9. DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid)
     
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Put your eating habits to the test 

Don’t forget to complete the quiz to move on to the next article.

Congratulations, you’ve finished the quiz and learned more about how many servings you need to eat from each food group (and why) when you’re breastfeeding! How many of the five questions did you click YES for? 

5

Well done! Keep up the good work every day to give your body the nutrients it needs to stay healthy and make nutritious breast milk for your little one.

 

3-4

You could improve! You’re eating the recommended number of servings from some food groups but missing out on others. Make a note of where you need to improve and include more foods from those groups in your diet. 

0-2

Oops! Your diet isn’t as balanced or nutrient-rich as it could be because you’re not eating enough food from all five groups. Make a note of where you need to improve and include more foods from those groups in your diet. Your body needs these nutrients to stay healthy and make nutritious breast milk for your little one.
 

Sources

Allen LH. B vitamins in breast milk: relative importance of maternal status and intake, and effects on infant status and function. Adv Nutr 2012; 3(3):362-9.

American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statement. Breastfeeding and the use of human milk. Pediatrics 2012; 129:e827–41.

James DC, Lessen R. Position of the American Dietetic Association: Promoting and supporting breastfeeding. J Am Diet Assoc. 2009; 109(11):1926-42.

Kolasa KM, Firnhaber G, Haven K. Diet for a healthy lactating woman. Clin Obstet Gynecol 2015; 58(4):893-901.

Last revised: May, 2017

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