There is a fair amount of confusion over what you can and can’t eat or take when you are pregnant, but what about afterwards? If you choose (and yes, it is a CHOICE people!!) to become one of the breastfeeding Mums then what you then choose to eat, drink or take continues to affect your baby as your nutrients become theirs.
Of course, it is important to maintain a healthy diet whoever you are but when you are breastfeeding then your intake becomes that much more important as it is your responsibility to give your baby the best start in life. Things like fruit and vegetables and protein such as lean meat, eggs and pulses and it is also advisable to have at least two portions of fish a week. It may be worth noting that there is a protein in cow’s milk that can affect your baby with symptoms such as bloating, vomiting or reflux and eczema.
With regards to drinking then the all important water is a necessity. Breastfeeding releases a hormone called oxytocin which makes you feel thirsty so have a glass of water nearby. It is best to avoid caffeine when breastfeeding as this may affect your baby’s sleep and I would also cut out alcohol as this will filter through to your baby when you are breastfeeding.
So, what can help whilst breastfeeding? Below I list some products and nutritional supplements to help you.
Revital Essence from Zita West
Whilst you are pregnant, it is fairly easy to remember that you should be taking vitamins to help your growing baby but what about afterwards? Well, this fantastic supplement from Zita West contains all the right nutrients to help you after your pregnancy and also assists with breastfeeding. It contains Beta Carotene to help protect against Vitamin A deficiency and cell mutation as well as a whole host of anti oxidants to help boost your immune system.
Nelson’s Rescue Cream
One of things I regularly suffered from when breastfeeding Grace was sore and cracked nipples. Thanks to my Mum’s advice – who breastfed all 7 of us – I used Nelson’s Rescue Cream (you must check with your Doctor or Health Visitor first) to ease the discomfort. I found that it was soothing and healed things up very quickly. It also meant that there were no nasty additives in the cream that may have affected Grace.
Triabeauty Skin Perfecting Blue Light
One of the things that I regularly suffered from as a child was acne. This returned throughout my pregnancy and was also an issue once I had given birth. Of course, I realise that this is down to the change in hormones but when you are pregnant or breastfeeding you can’t use any of the strong medication on offer. Triabeauty have come up with this fantastic gadget and, whilst it is a bit pricey, it has no harmful chemicals and gets right to the cause by eliminating the harmful bacteria at the source of the problem.
Reusable Breast Pads
These were an absolute godsend when I was breastfeeding. You can get them in a pack of six from Avent. They came in a handy laundry bag which made it easier not to lose them amongst the clothes in the washing machine. This saved me an absolute fortune on disposable ones as well as being eco-friendly.
Where would us Mums be without the good old muslins? I always purchased the very large ones. This would make them dual purpose – firstly to put over your shoulder and the baby whilst you are feeding to protect your modesty (I became an expert at this!) and then, when winding – especially if your baby is a sicky one (Grace was!) – then you can use the muslin to wipe and clean up afterwards.
I hope some of my experience and tips have helped you. Please remember that, whilst breastfeeding is considered the best start for your baby by health professionals, it really is down to you and your circumstances. People should never make you feel guilty if it is something that is unfeasible for you.