As a breastfeeding mother, there are certain nutrients that are essential for a growing child. In general, new mothers should add at least 500 calories to their daily food consumption to guarantee proper nutrition for their child.
Furthermore, they should drink a lot of water to replenish what they lose through nursing. The following are some of the five basic snacks for a breastfeeding woman:
This is one of the most essential breastfeeding snacks because it is a good source of protein. Certain kinds of fish such as canned sardines are a great source of calcium.
Fish such as herring, salmon and black cod are a good source of DHA, an omega-3 acid that is essential for the child’s brain development.
Beware of fish that have a high level of mercury, as these can harm your child’s brain. These include fish like tuna, swordfish, shark and mackerel.
2) Dairy Products
Regardless of whether you like milk, yoghurt or cheese, dairy products are one of the main constituents of healthy diet plans.
Certain brands of yoghurt contain probiotic bacteria, which contains beneficial microorganisms that are necessary for good gastrointestinal health. Milk contains Vitamin D, which is essential for the development of strong bones.
Apart from having B vitamins and protein, dairy products are a good source of calcium, which helps the child’s dental and bone structures. It is advisable to have at least 3 cups of dairy products every day.
Folic acid is essential for the development of the child’s nervous system. It is also a great source of vitamins C and E and potassium.
Avocados also provide a breastfeeding mother with a boost of calories owing to their high levels of monounsaturated fats. These are fats that balance the cholesterol levels in the body.
Blackberries, blueberries and raspberries have antioxidants like vitamin A and C. Antioxidants prevent cell damage and counteract the action of free radicals and can help to prevent disease such as cancer and heart attacks.
Berries also contain calcium, which is good for the child’s teeth and bones. Berries are also readily available and convenient snacks for breastfeeding women as they can be eaten fresh or dried.
These are rich sources of protein and fibre.
Almonds also contain calcium while cashew nuts have good levels of folic acid and iron and walnuts contain omega-3 acids.
Although many people worry about the fat content of nuts, a high percentage of the fat in nuts is monounsaturated fat – healthy fat. Nuts are convenient for nursing mothers especially when hunger strikes.
Eating healthy snacks all through the day enables nursing mothers maximise their energy.
Breast milk usually contains the same quality regardless of what you eat. When you are not eating a healthy diet, your body looks for the necessary nutrients from your body reserves. However, if these reserves are running low on basic nutrients, you and your child’s health are at stake.
This is why you should try and eat a nutritious meal as often as possible for both you and your child.
Do you have any great healthy snack ideas to add to this list? Please share in the comments below.