Diet Plan For Lactating Mother Pdf


Diet plan for lactating mother pdf – We all know that breastfeeding requires healthy and nutritious diet plan. Following a well-balanced diet is necessary for healthy growth of an infant. Breastfeeding has a lot of health benefits; however, if you aren’t getting enough calories and nutrient intake while nursing, you’ll struggle to sustain the energy level your baby needs. This is why a healthy diet is essential during breastfeeding.

Nutritional Plans & Healthy Meal Plan for Breastfeeding Mothers

Diet Plan for breastfeeding mothers

When you become a mother, everything revolves around what would be best for your baby as you start prioritising your baby’s needs and health.

In this article, Dr Seema Sehgal, a leading obstetrician and gynaecologist in Gurgaon explains nutritional plans and diet best for breastfeeding moms out there.

Diet for Breastfeeding Mothers

First-time moms are usually more worried and skeptical about what to eat and what to avoid while breastfeeding and believe me, this is perfectly normal behaviour.

They start being very cautious of their diet plan and ensure that it provides all of the nutrition required for the baby.

Wondering How Many Calories You Need When You Are Breastfeeding?

Post-delivery, the mother’s body produce milk the whole day. So you might think you need an extra amount of calories to keep yourself and your baby healthy. Breastfeeding does require an additional intake of calories, but it is not necessary to be too stringent about how many calories you take.

A diet chart for breastfeeding mothers should include nutrient-dense foods that assist your body and your baby’s growth and development.

New moms might still have their pregnancy weight on, and in such cases, your body already has those extra calories which will naturally be used for producing milk.

So too much intake of calories included in the diet plan of lactating mothers can also harm their body in the long run, especially when the baby starts consuming solid foods and the baby’s requirement of milk from mothers begin to decrease.

When breastfeeding, burning 200-500 calories a day is normal, so consuming the right amount of calories is essential, but overdoing it isn’t recommended.

Because the good news is that regardless of what you consume, your milk will most likely be adequate for your baby. At each stage of development, your body knows precisely what nourishment your kid requires.

Suppose you stayed within your doctor’s recommended weight throughout pregnancy and your postpartum weight is within normal ranges.

In that case, you shouldn’t need to worry about consuming any more or fewer calories than you already do, but still, if you have any doubts consulting your healthcare specialist is best.

Diet Plan Chart for Breastfeeding/Lactating Mother

Making the right nutritious choices will assist in stimulating the production of milk. Choosing foods rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals will help improve the growth and development of the baby.

diet for breast feeding mothers

Food for Breastfeeding Mothers

1. Avocado

Due to the high consumption of calories, mothers do get the required nutrients essential for their health from avocado. So, avocados act as a nutritious powerhouse as it contains over 80% fat and helps sustain a sensation of fullness while also giving heart-healthy fats to your body.

Avocados are high in vitamin B, K, C and Efolatepotassium, along with other nutrients.

2. Beans and Legumes

Beans and legumes are rich sources of protein, vitamins, minerals, and phytoestrogens, where phytoestrogens are known to boost milk production. Eating a variety of beans and legumes is beneficial to your overall health and maintaining healthy milk production.

Soybean and chickpea are some of the most nutritious foods to consume as they have been known to have the highest amount of phytoestrogens in them.

(Note: Please avoid soybean if your baby seems to be allergic to it.)

3. Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamin A and potassium. Vitamin A is required for improving eye health and immunological function and helps improve the health of the organs, including the heart, lungs, and kidneys.

4. Whole grains

Rice, bread, oatmeal are all rich in vitamins, minerals, fibre and carbohydrates. Being rich in carbohydrates and fibre, they help to keep you fuller for longer and also provides all the necessary nutrients required by the body, and fibre also helps in milk production.

Whole grains are also known to have properties that may help support the hormones responsible for making breast milk. Include- oatmeal cookies, healthy bread and brown rice in your diet during breastfeeding.

5. Yoghurt

Yoghurt or yogurt is a convenient snack and is filled with probiotics, protein, vitamins and calcium. Include low-fat dairy products in your breastfeeding Healthy meal plan as it gives a concentrated amount of calories to help fulfil your body’s required energy needs.

Greek yoghurt is an excellent source of protein and is also available in different flavours so that you can choose as per your taste and mood.

Yogurt is also convenient to eat to consume even when you have very little time for yourself and are preoccupied with the baby’s needs.

6. Apricots

Apricots are a great source of fibre, antioxidants, vitamin A, vitamin C, carotenes and minerals. It helps to keep the mother and the baby’s immune system healthy.

Dried apricots contain phytoestrogens, which aid in balancing the lactation hormones. Apricots act as friendly food buddies to breastfeeding moms. They’re one of the best lactogenic foods that can help with breast milk supply.

7. Dark green leafy vegetables

Dark green leafy vegetables like alfalfa, lettuce, kale, spinach, and broccoli are rich in fibre, folate, calcium, and vitamins. They include phytoestrogens, which may aid in the production of breast milk.
(Note: Too much intake of broccoli can harm the baby’s digestive system)

8. Fennel seeds

Fennel seeds are rich in fibre, potassium, manganese, zinc, iron, calcium and vitamin C & A. Fennel aids in the production of breastmilk as it is a well-known herbal galactagogue.

This substance may help in increasing the production of breast milk. Breastfeeding mothers can consume fennel seeds by adding a few seeds in tea, as a flavouring agent, and in the vegetables.

Foods to Avoid When Breastfeeding

1. Processed foods

Processed foods might be easy and quick to prepare and eat but are very harmful and toxic to a baby’s health as it contains preservatives and additives.

It may leave your baby feeling irritated fussy. Processed foods can cause digestive problems and allergies to the baby.

2. Alcohol

Alcohol and breastfeeding don’t go hand in hand because there is no such thing as a safe amount of alcohol in breast milk for a baby to drink.

Some amount of alcohol reaches the breast milk, and once the baby is exposed to the alcoholic breast milk, the baby may have delayed motor development and also affect the baby’s sleep patterns.

Therefore, having too many glasses of alcohol can disturb a baby’s hormonal imbalances and reduce the production of milk.

3. Coffee

During pregnancy and even after pregnancy, having too many cups of coffee can disturb the haemoglobin levels in the child. A moderate and recommended amount of caffeine intake would not harm the baby, but too many cups might lower the iron content in the milk.

4. Cigarettes

Smoking has never been considered a good habit, even for mothers who aren’t breastfeeding. Smoking cigarettes can increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and breathing issues in children leading to asthma.

5. Parsley and Sage

Though many women may not have seen any problems with parsley and sage, their intake may be low compared to women who noted a drop in milk production after eating parsley and sage.

6. Fish high in mercury

Fish is a rich source of omega 3 fatty acids, but Breastfeeding mothers should avoid fish high in mercury at all costs.

Even in small amounts, Mercury can travel via breastmilk and harm the baby’s brain and nervous system. Fish heavy in mercury is tuna, swordfish, mackerel, orange roughy, ray, shark and ling.

7. Wheat

Wheat-based food is nutritious, but it is not suitable for everyone, so it is critical to check how the baby is responding. Wheat-allergic babies may experience digestive problems, such as rashes, bloody stools, and fussiness.

8. Junk Food

Eating junk food once in a while will not harm you or your baby, but overeating junk food can harm the baby’s health. Mothers may put their children at risk of obesity and overeating as junk food contains high saturated and trans fats.

Allergies in baby

  • In rare cases a breastfeeding baby may develop a food allergy to foods the mother is eating. The most common symptoms are green, mucus-like and blood-specked stools. Colic and reflux are not usually caused by food allergies.
  • The most common foods that cause allergies are dairy products, soy products, wheat and eggs. Less common foods that cause allergies include fish, nuts, peanuts or corn. A baby could develop an allergy to any food you eat.
  • Keeping a food diary of symptoms along with what you eat might help you know which foods are causing the problem. As long as your baby is gaining weight and not anemic, the allergy is not going to cause any long-term problems. You do not need to stop breastfeeding.
  • Removing the suspected foods from your diet by carefully reading all food labels should solve the problem but it may take 4-6 weeks for the infant’s symptoms to resolve. A visit with a registered dietitian experienced with food allergies may help you plan your diet.

Diet For A Pregnant And A Lactating Mother

Diet For A Pregnant And A Lactating Mother

Diet for a Pregnant Woman
With each passing day, the baby within you is growing. Accordingly, the nutritional requirement also changes. Some of the nutrients that should be consumed more during pregnancy include

  1. Proteins: Protein is a powerhouse that is essential for the overall growth and development of the vital organs of the body including the brain. Eggs, poultry, meat, tofu, peas, fish, nuts are healthy sources of protein and should be included in the diet during pregnancy.
  2. Folic Acid: Folic acid goes a long way to minimise the incidence of neural tube defects (congenital spine and brain defects). During pregnancy, a woman should take at least 600 micrograms of folic acid daily. Foods rich in folic acid include fortified cereals, green leafy vegetables, seeds, nuts, avocados.
  3. Iron: Many women tend to suffer from iron deficiency and anemia during pregnancy which can have a negative impact on the baby (infant mortality, low birth weight). The daily iron requirement for a pregnant woman is about 27 milligrams. Thus, foods such as iron-fortified cereals and grains, dried fruits, green leafy vegetables, egg yolk should be taken more during pregnancy.
  4. Calcium: The importance of calcium for the bone health is known to all. For a pregnant woman (19 years and above), the daily calcium requirement is about 1,000 milligrams (1,300 mg per day for pregnant women who are 18 years or below). The foods that are rich in calcium include milk, dried figs, dates, almonds, oatmeal, orange, kale.

Diet for Lactating Mothers
Like pregnancy, women who are into breastfeeding should be careful with their diet. Enrich the diet with foods rich in Iron, calcium, proteins, and vitamins.

  1. Oatmeal, garlic, fennel, ginger, cookies, nuts, sesame seeds can work wonders to increase the lactation.
  2. Drink water, fresh fruit juice, soup, to keep the body hydrated.

There are also foods that are best left avoided for lactating mothers-

  1. Many babies develop allergic reactions (constipation, wheezing, eczema, vomiting, diarrhea) to dairy products. Thus, lactating mothers with such babies should avoid dairy products.
  2. Having chocolates in excess can have a laxative effect on the baby.
  3. Fish with high mercury content should be avoided.
  4. Processed foods and alcohol (avoid drinking at least 2-3 hours before breastfeeding the baby) are a big No if you are into breastfeeding.




8:00 am

1 cup tea (1 tsp sugar) + 7-8 soaked almonds and 4-5 dates

9:00 am

1 glass (200 ml) skimmed milk + 1/2 cup badam sheera + 1 Fruit OR 3 small methi or palak paratha + ½ cup curd/raita OR 3 slices of whole wheat bread and 2 eggs + 1 fruit or 1 cup of poha OR upma + 1 fruit + 1 sunth vadi

Mid Morning:
11:00 am

1 fruit + 1 methi ladoo

1:00 pm

1 cup salad + 2 rotis or 2 small bajra rotis 1 cup rice + 1 cup vegetables + 1 cup moong curry/dal OR 1 cup salad + 2 rotis + 1 cup rice + 1 cup vegetables + 1 cup fish curry



4:00 pm

1 glass milk (200ml) + 1 goand ladoo

Mid Eve:
6:00 pm

1 cup tea (1tsp sugar) with
2 small pan cakes (Puda/chila) or Sprout bhel or
1 cup vegetable upma

9:00 pm

1 cup salad + 2 rotis+ 1 cup rice +
1 cup leafy vegetable + 1 cup dal

Bed Time

1 glass milk (200ml)

*Fruits: any seasonal fruits such as apple pear, grapes, melons, banana etc.
**Salads: carrot, cucumber, tomato, cabbage, beetroot, lettuce, etc.

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