A postpartum diet is as crucial as your pregnancy meals. The nutrients that you consume during this time is what your baby gets through your breastmilk. Plus, eating wholesome foods during pregnancy can help amp up your energy levels and speed up your healing process. The good news is that your postpartum diet doesn’t have to be as strict as your pregnancy diet. You have the option to include more food items that satisfy your tastebuds and help you regain your strength and energy at the same time.
Eating well post-pregnancy is not only important for your own health, but also for your baby’s growth and development. It can also help:
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Here’s a list of the right foods that every new mum should incorporate into their diet. These foods are rich in vitamins, minerals, iron, calcium, and omega-3 fatty acids, and will help your body recover from childbirth.
You may have heard that oatmeal can help produce breastmilk. Surprisingly, there’s actually some truth to this. Oatmeal is considered a galactagogue and increases the production of the oxytocin hormone, which can resultantly help increase breastmilk production. Oatmeal is also calorie-dense and high in fibre and protein. It is also tasty and a quick to prepare meal that keeps you full for long hours.
Eggs are possibly the most versatile staple and are great for any meal. They are a compact and efficient protein source and are rich in choline, a nutrient necessary for brain development in the baby. It takes less than five minutes to scramble them up, or if you have time, you can hard boil them and them as a protein-filled snack whenever you want.
Salmon is rich in Vitamin B12 and D, DHA, and omega-3 fatty acids. This food is foundational to the baby’s brain and nervous system development. It also helps boost energy levels in mums. Plus, it’s a low-calorie meal option and you can pair it with steamed rice or a bowl of salad.
Leafy greens such as spinach should be an essential part of your postpartum diet. They are enriched in antioxidants, fibre, protein, calcium, magnesium, and many vitamins such as A, C, E, and K. Spinach is also an anti-inflammatory food that is high in iron and helps control blood sugar levels. You can add spinach to your salad bowl, saute them with garlic and salt, or freeze them and blend them into quick breakfast smoothies.
Oranges are rich in Vitamin C and can help ward off infections and illnesses by boosting your immunity. They also help your body absorb iron when you are consuming iron-rich foods and enhance your energy levels. In addition to oranges, you can also include fruits like strawberries, lemon, apples, and bananas to get adequate nutrients that support recovery after childbirth.
Avocado contains healthy fats such as omega-3 and omega-6, and other essential nutrients like vitamins C, and E, potassium, and folic acid. Including avocados in your post-pregnancy diet can help boost your milk production, fight inflammation, and energise you. The best part is that you can prepare avocado in many different ways, such as having an avocado salad, avocado, and egg toast, or just blending to make a quick and delicious smoothie.
Toast a slice or two of whole-grain bread to get sufficient amounts of protein and fibre in your body and keep concerns like constipation at bay. Have the bread during breakfast or as a snack and top it with butter, jam, cheese, or any other topping of your choice.
The high-fibre content in beans keeps your digestive system moving along, which is essential following vaginal or c-section birth. Beans are also a great source of protein and can be added to any meal for an added nutritional boost.
Pulses (dal) are a primary element in an Indian diet and are good sources of fibre, protein, vitamins, and minerals. You can have red or green grams by boiling and seasoning them during lunch. Pulses are easy to digest and are tasty too. They can also prevent fat from accumulating in your body.
Milk and other dairy products are a great source of vitamin D, protein, and calcium. Having milk can increase your milk production, and also help the baby absorb calcium from the breastmilk for bone development.
Another galactagogue, ginger can help boost your milk supply, aid digestion, and also help soothe nausea. It’s also an anti-inflammatory ingredient that helps fight off infections and boosts your immunity. You can have it raw, boil it to make ginger tea, or just add it to a tall glass of iced ginger tea.
Try to include plenty of nutrient-rich foods in your postpartum diet to speed up your healing process. Eat a healthy, satisfying, and well-balanced diet, and don’t forget to drink at least eight cups of water to keep your body hydrated.