Can I Drink Coffee While Breastfeeding?

(November 24, 2010)

It is important to maintain a healthy diet while breastfeeding toddler, just as it was during pregnancy. A good diet must comprise of nutritious fresh fruits, fresh green leafy vegetables, whole grain / meal products, lean protein, and calcium-rich foods. If you adapt to the recommendations detailed in the Food Guide Pyramid, you will soon be on your way to providing your body and your baby a wholesome diet.

As with pregnancy, it is highly recommended to restrict the consumption of caffeine you drink while infant feeding. Although a couple of cups of coffee, evened out during the day might be fine, it is important to note that the greater the amount of caffeine you consume (through tea, carbonated beverages, coffee), the greater is the likelihood of these beverages affecting your infant's mood and/or sleep patterns. Moreover caffeinated drinks such as coffee can also cause dehydration in you.

You will need to eat and drink healthy foods in just the right quantities for your body to produce milk for your baby. However, before you decide to add on the calories, it is important to speak with you doctor on the amount of foods you have to consume, depending on your weight, your height, your age, and your levels of activity during the day. You could also ask your doctor whether you should continue to take your prenatal vitamins. Some doctors are of the opinion that women must continue with the vitamins even during the phase of breastfeeding.

Remember to carry a water bottle with you whenever you are on the move or travelling while also remembering to refill the bottle regularly, to ensure that you drink sufficient quantities of liquids throughout the day. Just as during pregnancy, nursing mothers must refrain from consuming fish that might be high in mercury levels, since mercury in fish can hamper the growth of the developing nervous system in the baby. Some doctors also recommend avoiding groundnuts and peanut butter spreads, in order to prevent the emergence of peanut allergies in their infants.

If you begin to notice a pattern of irritability, colicky or flatulent behavior in your baby, attempt at keeping a track of precisely what you consume and how your little one is reacting to the foods, and then you might want to consult with your doctor. Your doctor might recommend doing away with the possibly conflicting foods (such as milk products, seafood, peanuts — common substances causing allergies) from your diet for some days to check if there is any reprieve.

Submitted by J on November 24, 2010 at 11:23

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