Should I avoid certain foods whilst breastfeeding?

According to the NHS there are no foods which you need to completely avoid whilst breastfeeding. However, there are some foods which you may wish to limit your intake of.

During pregnancy, your baby will have tasted the foods you chose to eat through your amniotic fluid. As a result of this, it is likely that your baby is already accumstomed to your diet, and whilst strong foods may have an impact on the taste of your breast milk, it is unlikely this will change your babies response to your milk. However, if you notice that your baby reacts badly after you have eaten a certain food, you may wish to avoid that food until you are no longer breastfeeding. For a list of foods that may affect your breast milk, click here.

Fish

It is recommended that you do not eat more than two 140g portions of oily fish per week. Oily fish includes fresh mackerel, sardines, trout and tuna (not canned).

Peanuts

There’s no clear evidence that eating peanuts while breastfeeding affects your baby’s chances of developing a peanut allergy. If you have any questions or concerns, you can talk to your GP, midwife or health visitor.*

Caffeine

You may wish to limit your intake of caffeine as consuming too much may unsettle your baby.

Caffeine is a stimulant and can make your baby restless. It’s a good idea for pregnant and breastfeeding women to restrict their caffeine intake to less than 300mg a day:

  • one mug of filter coffee: 140mg
  • one mug of instant coffee: 100mg
  • one mug of tea: 75mg
  • one can of energy drink: up to 80mg
  • one 50g plain chocolate bar: up to 50mg
  • one cola drink (354mls): 40mg*

breastfeeding mum eating an apple

Click here, to find out more information about alcohol and the recommended intake guidelines whilst breastfeeding.

 

References:

Nhs.uk. (2017). Breastfeeding and diet – Pregnancy and baby guide – NHS Choices. [online] Available at: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/Pages/breastfeeding-diet.aspx [Accessed 15 Sep. 2017].

Basics, B. (2017). Diet for a healthy breastfeeding mom | BabyCenter. [online] BabyCenter. Available at: https://www.babycenter.com/0_diet-for-a-healthy-breastfeeding-mom_3565.bc [Accessed 15 Sep. 2017].

*[Correct as at 15/09/2017]

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