9 Foods To Add To Your Breastfeeding Meal Plan That’ll Get Your Milk Flowing

By
Share
Ad failed to load

By now, you know all about pregnancy food restrictions and are unlikely to see any moms-to-be downing shots of tequila or tucking into a platter of sushi. But what happens once the baby arrives and you’re ready to start breastfeeding? You’re still eating for two in a way, and it isn’t like you’re about to forego more than nine months of careful eating for a diet of junk food. But it can be tricky to know which foods are the best choices for both mom and baby during this time. Fortunately, a good breastfeeding meal plan may help you produce more milk and give you the energy to feed your baby, even on days when all you want is another hour or two of shut-eye.

The usual foundations of any healthy diet, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, adequate protein, and lots of calcium are all advised, but breastfeeding moms also need foods that help keep the milk flowing. Yes, some of these foods may act as natural galactogogues, or substances that help boost your milk production. In other words, they are superfoods for both you and your baby. To find out which foods are a good bet for new moms, and which are best avoided at this time, read on.

Ad failed to load

1Brown Rice

Health recommended new moms enjoy plenty of brown rice, whole wheat bread, and fortified cereals. As the U.S. National Library of Medicine notes, these complex carbohydrates are used to give the body energy because they take longer to digest. These foods will help give you the sustained energy you need to take care of your baby.

2Milk

Drink milk to make milk? Well, in a way. Consuming dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt is a great way to get the calcium you need, and, as noted by Healthy Children, meet your baby’s calcium needs as well. Not into dairy? Tofu and fortified cereals can work, too.

3Beans & Lentils

The Mayo Clinic recommends breastfeeding moms take in a variety of protein-rich foods, such as lean meat, eggs, beans, and lentils. Protein is an essential building block for the human body, and it supports your baby’s growth, as well as your own recovery.

Ad failed to load

4Oranges

Fruits in general are a good idea for breastfeeding moms, especially oranges, strawberries, and grapefruit, which are rich in vitamin C. The University of Maryland Medical Center notes that vitamin C is important for tissue growth and repair, and breastfeeding moms need more vitamin C now than during pregnancy (around 120 milligrams per day).

5Papaya

According to Women’s Health, new moms need extra folic acid (around 500 mcg daily) while they are breastfeeding, as it prevents anemia. Consider stocking up on papaya, oranges, and raspberries to get your daily dose.

6Fish

Fish, like salmon, canned light tuna, or tilapia, is a good source of the omega-3 fats, which Baby Center noted help your baby’s brain and eye development. Just watch out for fish known to contain harmful levels of mercury, such as shark, swordfish, and king mackerel. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, if infants are exposed to this element in fish known as methylmercury, they may experience impaired neurological development.

Ad failed to load

7Oats

According to Kelly Mom, oats cant amp up a mom’s breast milk supply since they positively affects levels of pitocin, the hormone responsible for milk supply. So tucking into a large bowl of oatmeal may help you breastfeed more easily.

8Leafy Green Veggies

What healthy food list would be complete without a mention of leafy green vegetables? The United States Department of Agriculture notes that leafy green veggies contain vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and iron, which your baby needs to get enough oxygen to their developing tissues and organs.

9Carrots

A recent study from Purdue found that many breastfeeidng moms need more vitamin A to boost the carotenoid content in their breast milk, which plays a big role in your baby’s development. To amp up your vitamin A intake, munch on sweet potatoes, carrots, and squash.

Images: jozik13/Fotolia; Meal Makeover Moms, Guy Montag, Cookbookman17, J. Triepke, Janine, Keith McDuffee, Rachel Hathaway, Daniella Segura, CCharmon / Flickr

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

6 Early Signs You're Going To Have A Short Labor, According To Experts

As far as I'm concerned, a short labor is right up there with winning the lottery in terms of lucky life events. (And when I was actually in labor, I would absolutely have traded a bucketful of lottery winnings for a speedier birth.) While some women…
By Kelly Mullen-McWilliams

Kids Will Love These TV Shows & Movies Coming To Netflix In March

You can always count on Netflix to keep it fresh: though there are already so many movies and shows to choose from, every month there's an influx of new content to keep your entire family entertained. As February enters its final weeks, it's time to …
By Megan Walsh

Here Are 10 Ways To Boost Your Baby's Immunity To The Flu

As I'm sure you've read in the thousands upon thousands of articles written about it this winter, the flu is spreading like wildfire and it's bad. Really bad. This strand of flu is the worst we've had in a very long time and it's the most widespread,…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Khloé Kardashian Asked Twitter About Her Bump, & Moms Totally Delivered

Like her younger sister Kylie Jenner, Khloé Kardashian managed to keep most of her pregnancy a sort-of secret. But unlike Jenner, Kardashian chose to publicly announce her pregnancy several months before the baby's due date. While there's no wrong wa…
By Sophie Hirsh

21 Moms Share The Most Surprising Part About Having A C-Section

Honestly, I don't think we, as a culture, talk about C-sections nearly enough, especially considering so many mothers experience them. And because of a number of factors, the little we do talk about it always seems to be a familiar narrative: "It's n…
By Jamie Kenney

13 Yummy Instant Pot Recipes To Make Under 30 Minutes

An Instant Pot seems to be the must-have appliance in every kitchen these days. If you are anything like me and never knew the beauty of a Instant Pot, you are about to have your life changed. Basically, you put some ingredients into a pot, set the t…
By Kristin Manna

9 Things The First Six Months Of Motherhood Will Teach You About Your Baby

Personally, the first six months of motherhood was a mixed bag. I learned some harsh lessons about myself that made taking care of my baby seem overwhelming. For example, I was clueless, and no amount of research could help me feel like anything but …
By Steph Montgomery

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack