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Have you just had a baby? Congratulations on your new bundle of joy! As a new mother, you must be experiencing a lot of mixed emotions. It is tiring to take care of a newborn while your own body is recovering from the strains of pregnancy. It is important for a new mother to take care of her own diet as well. New mothers should take care of their health even after their pregnancy as much as they took care during their pregnancy. A new mom should focus on a postpartum diet to keep herself healthy and active.
During the pregnancy, there have been umpteen transformations in your body. Post pregnancy, the body takes time to go back to its previous stage. It becomes important to eat right which will help to heal your body from the daily wear and tear and also for you to cope up with the stress and the lost strength. If you are breastfeeding, eating healthy and eating the correct food becomes all the more necessary. You can also refer to this chart to find out what is good and what is bad for you:
Oily and fried foods are loaded with calories. Having them as your postpartum diet can lead to fat accumulation in your body. Accumulation of fat leads to weight gain and increases unwanted calories which become difficult to shed later in life. They also cause bloating in the mother.
Caffeine in any form is harmful as it can enter the baby’s system and can cause troubled sleep patterns in babies, making them irritable and fussy. Caffeine is passed through breast milk and can cause growth and development issues in the babies.
Whether it is before or post pregnancy, alcohol cannot be a part of your diet. You did not have alcohol for 9 months, that doesn’t mean that after you delivered the baby you can have that most wanted glass of wine or beer. Alcohol in any form can harm the way your body is trying to heal itself after delivery. If you consume alcohol after delivery it can transfer to your breastmilk and through to your baby. This can harm your baby’s brain and cause physical damage as well.
Canned food should be avoided and not be a part of your postpartum diet. This is because canned food contain many preservatives and are also very high in sodium content. These two ingredients in canned food are responsible for increasing the blood pressure of the mother.
We all love spicy food at times and especially after your pregnancy, you might crave for very spicy food at times. But you need to avoid this as much as possible because spicy food can increase the temperature of the body and can cause heartburn and digestion problems. The spice content may also harm the breastmilk quality and can cause digestion problems in the baby.
You do not need to avoid fish entirely but fish with a high mercury level like swordfish, shark, king mackerel and tilefish should not be consumed at all. River fish is very good in Omega 3 fatty acids and can be consumed. If you are breastfeeding then eating fishes with a high level of mercury can find its way to your breastmilk as well and can be harmful for your child. This is one food that should be avoided during and after pregnancy.
Dairy is not bad for your health but there should a limit to which it is to be consumed. Too much dairy can affect breast milk and can make your child prone to be lactose intolerant. Too much milk cannot be consumed by your baby as their stomach and digestive systems are not yet developed fully. Thus, you should always stick to more healthy dairy choices like yoghurt which contains probiotic.
Fatty meat can make you gain unhealthy weight. Meat with fat absorbs toxins and can make you gain weight at a rapid pace.
These are loaded with sugar and are also the main culprit in developing gas and digestion problems in the mother and the baby. They also increase weight and are unhealthy since many of them have do contain pesticide residues.
Everything should be taken but only in moderation. Sugar and artificial sweeteners can be a rare and occasional content of your post-pregnancy diet. Too much of sugar and artificial sweeteners will not only increase your blood sugar levels, gain weight but will also pass through your breastmilk and can lead to behaviour changes in your little one.
Your after postpartum diet should consist of healthy dry fruits such as almonds and fox nuts. Almonds contain the right amount of nutrition and vitamins that develop a baby’s brains and keep you healthy. Fox nuts or Lotus seeds or makhana are helpful in maintaining a healthy bowel movement.
Yoghurt, slim milk, low-fat cheese or cottage cheese; low-fat dairy products should be an important part of the diet as it improves bone strength and provides the necessary vitamins and calcium.
Dark coloured beans like kidney beans, black beans are rich in iron and a great source of protein for mothers and babies.
All green vegetables provide a good amount of iron. Green vegetables like spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage are loaded with nutrients. They also keep the bowel movement in control and help produce more milk for breastfeeding mothers.
All fruits, especially citrus fruits are very beneficial in strengthening the immune system and boosting milk production for breastfeeding mothers. Papaya is considered to be highly beneficial after pregnancy as it helps with the contraction of the uterus.
This is a great source of protein and can be consumed by the body quickly. You can even opt for DHA fortified eggs that are healthy and provide the required nutrient to your baby.
Salmons and river fish contain the required amount of Omega 3 fatty acids needed by your body and needed by your newborn baby if you are a breastfeeding mother. They help in brain development of your child and also help in keeping your mood happy and depression after pregnancy at bay.
You did have folic acid tablets during pregnancy but they are as important after pregnancy as well. Whole grain breads and pastas are rich in folic acid and provide you with a healthy dose of fibre and iron.
These are highly rich in iron, protein and vitamin B12. They help in keeping the energy levels of a new mother at a high and keep tiredness at bay. They also do not increase weight and put on extra calories.
This is also known as Ragi and is a good source of calcium and iron, which are the two most important nutrients required by a new mother post delivery. For those who are lactose intolerant, finger millets can be the answer to get the daily dose of calcium and to regain the lost strength post delivery.
You should always remember to keep yourself hydrated and drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water. Combining the right kind of food along with light exercises will help you regain your body shape and make you a fit mother.