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Are there certain foods that new mothers should avoid while breastfeeding?


For today’s blog on mother’s nutrition let us welcome our in-house nutritionist, Jeevitha Prabhu. With a Masters’s in Food, Nutrition, and a passion for promoting well-being through balanced diets, Jeevitha has worked for different hospitals, schools and fitness studios helping clients lead a healthy life. 

Mothers’ nutrition plays a vital role in not just the baby’s health but also the mother’s health for the next few years. So, choose the right foods and make sure to include them in way more healthy ways.

Being a mother is not at all an easy task. Carrying them for the whole nine months with a lot of food restrictions and sleep patterns is way more complicated; Yet a good kind of feeling that every mother could feel by the end of the day. Once the baby is born, they get breastfed as their full source of food for the first 6 months, which is from the mother. So, the mom needs to eat healthy and nutritious food; There are a few foods which may react in the babies. This is why the mother should have control over the foods they eat and consider the limit daily.

A breastfeeding mother should consume a balanced diet which is made of proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and even calcium. When there are a lot of non-vegetarian options available for nursing moms, it’s important to take into consideration and limits; Also make sure to check the baby, and if they get reacted avoid them initially and try after a month or so. When you are a vegetarian or vegan person, there are even options available for making your diet balanced.

Foods to Avoid While Breastfeeding:

Here are some of the foods that you should avoid as a new mom or breastfeeding mom considering the health of yourself and the baby:

  • Coffee:

There could be a lot of myths and facts which you could have heard while having coffee throughout your pregnancy. There are chances where the foetus’s development would be affected when the caffeine consumption is excess. But during the time of breastfeeding, the caffeine limit will not affect the baby. So, make sure to just have a glass or two in a day to the max while you are nursing your baby.

  • Alcohol:

This is something that you should completely avoid during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Even though there are papers which tell you to take them in a limit or a glass, it is better to stay away. Even if you have a sip or a glass of alcohol, there are chances that it may pass into the baby’s body through breast milk. So, if you have drunk already, make sure not to breastfeed for at least 3 hrs to the minimum. Some changes in drinking alcohol may affect the motor development and sleep patterns in a baby. “As a new mother, the baby relies on you for nourishment. Drinking alcohol can compromise your ability to be fully present and energetic.”

  • Chocolate:

Make sure to read the ingredient list in whatever packaged foods you eat. Having this as a habit will help you in staying away from a lot of chemical or poisonous ingredients. It is okay to have chocolate, but make sure you stay in control. Check the baby now and then, on their stools, behaviours, sleep patterns, etc. There are chances that the babies can develop changes of colours in the stools, and also irregular sleep patterns. Make sure that you have dark chocolates that too in less amount of sugar. 

  • Raw / Uncooked Meat:

When you are taking non-vegetarian foods like fish, meat, eggs, or chicken, make sure that they are fully cooked. This is because the baby’s body organs would be developing in this stage; raw or undercooked meat and other items would make the baby face indigestion and even other problems like gas, constipation, etc. “Cook meat thoroughly to ensure that new mothers avoid potential food poisoning and related health issues.”

  • Spicy Foods:

It is important to make sure the foods are not too spicy or oily. This is because if the food is too spicy, then babies may tend to feel pain in the stomach and have constipation. Especially when you’re having junk foods, make sure to just have them in moderation to avoid stomach-related problems for yourself and the baby. “Spicy foods might lead to digestive discomfort for new mothers, especially during the postpartum period.”

  • High Mercury Fishes:

The mercury-rich fishes like sharks, tilefish, etc should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Mercury is not good for women who are pregnant and even for nursing moms. So, make sure to avoid them during your pregnancy and breastfeeding phase.


It is better to avoid the above list of foods considering the health and comfort of both mommy and the baby. It’s normal to get stressed when you are not able to have your favourite foods; Never worry, this too will pass.

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