The doctor specializing in Nutrition and Dietetics, Escorihuela Navarro, explains what diet a mother should follow during the period of lactation, as well as other tips for quality breastfeeding without problems that affect the baby.
How can a woman's nutrition affect breastfeeding?
During the lactation period, the mother's diet is essential. Not only must cover the nutritional needs of it, but must provide the baby all those nutrients necessary for proper development.
Food as a general rule, and if there is no other special need, must be balanced. It is essential that the breastfeeding diet contains pasta and legumes, rich in fiber from fruits and vegetables and contain meats and fish. Nor should we forget about dairy products at this stage of life.
Is there any key food or, on the contrary, should be avoided for a good quality of lactation?
The key to a good diet during breastfeeding is to find the balance between all the nutrients so that in "the variety" we will find the balance. In addition, a good guideline would be to try to consume less fried, precooked or very sugary foods.
The consumption of coffee, soft drinks with caffeine, alcohol should be limited as they can affect the baby.
Yes it is true, that there are foods that can alter the taste of milk such as garlic, asparagus, onion, spices ...
As with most diets, is it important to eat five meals a day?
It is very important, during breastfeeding to make five, or even six meals a day. This does not imply the consumption of more calories throughout the day, but in this way the energy and nutrient distribution will be more balanced. It is true that during breastfeeding, the mother's energy needs increase, but this does not imply the old belief of "eating for two".
Is it harmful for the baby to carry out diets to lose weight during the period of lactation?
During breastfeeding a weight control diet can be done as long as there is no related pathology.
It is especially important that you are supervised by a professional who will guide and calculate the needs of each mother and baby.
Are there medications that should be avoided?
As a general rule, no medication should be consumed during breastfeeding as it can be transmitted to breast milk. The best thing in any case is to ask your doctor and never take medication without your consent, including herbal products.
Can intake of cow's milk create intolerances in the baby?
The baby's digestive system is not prepared to be able to digest cow's milk proteins in addition to other components. For this reason, it is important to delay your consumption until at least one year of life. In the event that breastfeeding is not possible you can use formulas specially designed for these periods.