Producing milk is an energy-draining task and it’s very common for breastfeeding mothers to fell hungry all the time. It’s important to watch your diet because you are what you eat – which means whatever you put in your body can affect the quantity and quality of your breast milk.
Therefore, eating right is an important step to get all the essential nutrients (healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants) you and your baby need. So to you keep your energy level high, we’ve combined a list of highly nutritious foods that are excellent for breastfeeding mothers. You can thank us later 😉
Nuts such as almonds and walnuts are packed with protein, minerals (i.e. iron, calcium, and zinc), fatty acids, and vitamins. Besides that, nuts make great snacks as they do not require any special preparation to eat. You can choose from many types of nuts while breastfeeding. This includes whole nuts, nut butters, and other nut products.
If you don’t mind getting your hands a little dirty, whip up some cranberry almond cookies. Recipe here.
Salmon is a rich source of high-quality protein for nursing mothers. It contains EFA (Essential Fatty acids) and DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid that babies need for optimal brain development. DHA also helps lift your mood and studies suggest that it may play a role in preventing postpartum depression.
For a healthy and hearty meal, try Martha Stewart’s easy roasted salmon recipe here.
3. Sweet Potato
In Asian countries like South Korea, sweet potato is considered as a superfood. Not only does sweet potato contains energy-producing carbohydrates that help fight fatigue, but it is also rich in Vitamin A, C, and B-complex as well as magnesium, calcium, iron, and potassium.
Try baking sweet potatoes for dinner tonight. Recipe here.
This list wouldn’t be complete without avocados. Thanks to its high concentration of monounsaturated fats (aka the “good” fats), avocados can help balance your cholesterol levels and give you an energy boost. The green delight is also rich in folic acid, vitamins, potassium, and folate.
Fancy a bowl of avocado salad? Recipe here.
It’s important for breastfeeding mothers to get at least two servings of fruit each day. While bananas and apples are good for you, we recommend putting berries into your diet. Be it blueberries, blackberries, or strawberries, berries are high in mineral and antioxidants such as vitamin A and vitamin C.
Get all the nutrients you need in the form of a delicious triple berry smoothie. Recipe here.
6. Green leafy vegetables
Leafy green vegetables are a good non-dairy source of calcium and fiber. While spinach and broccoli are filled with Vitamin A, dark leafy greens such as kale, collards, and bok choy are rich in folic acid. And that’s not all, green veggies are also filled with heart-healthy antioxidants.
Try making a kale salad today! Recipe here.
7. Legumes and beans
Legumes and beans are important vegetarian sources of protein and fiber. Although dark-colored ones such as black beans and kidney beans are rich in iron, chickpeas are regarded as a lactation booster for nursing mothers.
Here are 16 delicious recipes featuring beans and lentils.
Not only are eggs filled with high-quality proteins, it also contains vitamins (i.e. vitamins A, B12, B2, and B5), minerals, good fats, and various trace nutrients. Moreover, many studies suggest that eggs provide HDL (aka the “good cholesterol”). It is also a versatile ingredient that can be easily found in stores and markets.
If you’re like us, then a simple yet yummy egg sandwich is your all-time go-to treat. Recipe here.
9. Brown rice
According to various researches, brown rice has hormone stimulants which boost lactation which enhances breast milk production. Furthermore, whole-grain carbs like brown rice helps keep your energy level high and increase the appetite, enabling nursing mothers to eat more nutritious food.
Pair brown rice with black beans for dinner tonight, you won’t regret it. Recipe here.
10. Chia seeds
Chia seeds is currently one of the most popular superfoods and it’s not hard to see why. It is a rich source of fiber, protein, calcium, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acid content. Many mothers add chia seeds to their meals because it makes them feel fuller longer.
Add chia seeds in your acai bowl. Recipe here.