Healthy Food Choices for Breastfeeding Mothers

Healthy Food Choices for Breastfeeding Mothers
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What’s on Your Plate?

Before you eat, think about what and how much food goes on your plate or in your cup or bowl. Over the day, include foods from all food groups: vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fat-free or low-fat dairy products, and lean protein foods.

Healthy Food Choices for Breastfeeding Mothers

Making Healthy Food Choices

  • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables. Choose a variety, including dark-green and red and orange vegetables and beans and peas.
  • Make at least half your grains whole. Choose whole grains in Place of refined grains.
  • Switch to skim or 1% milk . Choose fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products such As milk, yogurt, cheese,or fortified soy beverages.
  • Vary your protein food choices Choose seafood, lean meat and poultry, eggs, beans and peas, soy products, and unsalted nuts and seeds.
  • Use oils to replace solid fats where possible.
  • Make choices that are low in “empty calories.”

Healthy Food Choices for Breastfeeding Mothers

What are “empty calories”?

Empty Calories are calories from added sugars and solid fats in foods.

Some foods with empty calories:

  • Candy
  • Desserts
  • Fried foods
  • Ice cream
  • Sugar-sweetened
  • Sweetened cereals
  • Biscuits
  • Hot dogs
  • Soft drinks/soda fruit drinks/tea

What About Alcohol?

Be very cautious about drinking alcohol, if you choose to drink at all. You may consume a single alcoholic drink if your baby’s breastfeeding behavior is well established—no earlier than 3 months old. Then wait at least 4 hours before breastfeeding. Or, you may express breast milk before drinking and feed the expressed milk to your baby later.

Breast Milk : Your Baby’s First Food

Doctors recommend feeding only breast milk for the first 6months. Continue breastfeeding in addition to feeding solid foods until your baby is at least 1 year old or older.

  • Breastfeeding helps form a special bond with your baby.
  • Breast milk helps protect your baby from illness.
  • Breastfeeding is also good for you. It lowers your risk for breast cancer and type 2 Diabetes.
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Tips for Breastfeeding Moms

Making healthy food choices with regular physical activity will keep

Being Physically Active Unless your doctor advises you not to be physically active, include 2½ hours each week of physical activity such as brisk walking, dancing, or swimming. The activity should be done for at least 10 minutes at a time, and preferably spread throughout the week.


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