11 Things You Should Avoid While Breastfeeding

11 Critical Things You Should Avoid While Breastfeeding in 2023

YES, there are certain things you should avoid while breastfeeding. For 9 months, you carefully avoided hot dogs, unpasteurized cheese, deli meat, and all the other non-pregnancy-friendly food to keep the baby healthy and active.

Now that the baby is here, those protective instincts are heightened, so it’s okay to ask if there are things you should avoid while breastfeeding.

Breast milk is very nutritional. It gives the baby the most nutrients during the first six months. Research has shown that what you consume has some effect on breast milk’s contents.

Generally, there are no limited foods. Instead, women are advised to eat a balanced, varied diet. But to maintain the milk production levels when breastfeeding and ensure the baby is healthy and happy, there are a few things you might want to avoid. Read on to learn the things you should avoid while breastfeeding.

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What are the Things you Should Avoid While Breastfeeding?

things you should avoid while breastfeeding

Breastfeeding mothers don’t need to worry too much about what they shouldn’t eat, but it’s crucial to be aware of the things that, when consumed in high quantities, can affect your milk production and your baby’s health.

Below are the 11 Things You Should Avoid While Breastfeeding.

1. Fish high in mercury

One of the things you should avoid while breastfeeding is fish that are high in mercuty.

Fish is an excellent source producing omega-3 fatty acids, which are crucial for infant brain development but are sometimes difficult to find in other foods.

But, some seafood may also contain high levels of mercury. This toxic metal is hazardous for young children and newborns, who are more susceptible to mercury poisoning. The central nervous system of your newborn may be permanently affected by acute exposure to high mercury levels, which may have impairments or delays in; fine motor skills, visual-spatial awareness, cognition, and speech and language development. Fish that are high in mercury, are king mackerel, swordfish, marlin, shark, tilefish, and bigeye tuna, which are among the things you should avoid while breastfeeding.

2. Chocolate

Chocolate is also one of the things you should avoid while breastfeeding. A few chocolate treats or a slice of chocolate cake are okay. If you eat a large quantity of chocolate, the theobromine (a stimulant) in the chocolate can affect your baby. Another reason not to overeat chocolate is that it also contains caffeine.

3. Alcohol

One of the crucial things you should avoid while breastfeeding is alcohol because it might harm your baby if it enters your breast milk. It’s better to abstain from drinking, but if you do, know that it will take 1-2 hours to leave your system. Alcohol does not stay in breast milk for longer than it does in the bloodstream, so you can start breastfeeding as soon as you feel completely sober. Although it is often recommended to mothers who have taken a few drinks, it is not necessary to¬† “pump and dump” after drinking. It’s okay to breastfeed if you feel much better.

4. Wheat

Gluten intolerance may be the issue if your baby develops bloody stools. Wheat-related problems can be indicated by fussiness and stomach pain. The best way to determine whether wheat is a problem is to follow an elimination diet. Some mothers decide to eliminate all typical problem-causing meals and reintroduce them one at a time. Slowly reintroducing the foods makes it possible to identify the allergy or intolerance.

avoid these thing while breastfeeding
High angle portrait of young African-American mother breastfeeding cute baby boy with child looking at camera, copy space

5. Garlic

Did you realize that garlic smell can also enter into your milk? And as a result of your nipple tasting like garlic? If your baby often refuses to breastfeed or pulls away to make faces when breastfeeding, check to see if the behavior coincides with the last time you ate any garlic-flavored foods. Even though most of us believe that garlic makes everything better, newborns’ palates need to develop more to appreciate its benefits.

6. Peanut

If you have a family history of peanut allergies, avoid eating peanuts until your child has been weaned. Breast milk can transmit the allergens found in peanuts and tree nuts. If you’re unsure whether your child has a peanut allergy, keep an eye out for any rash, wheezing, or hives, as these symptoms may indicate an allergic reaction.

7. Dairy

One of the things that cause the most issues for breastfeeding babies is dairy. You should try an elimination diet if your baby is highly fussy after breastfeeding or has sleep issues, eczema, or other skin issues. Even though avoiding all dairy products can be challenging, you must abstain from dairy for a few weeks to rule out a dairy allergy. If your baby’s symptoms become better following the trial time, then a dairy allergy is to blame.

8. Citrus

Because of your baby’s immature Gastrointestinal tract, some of the substances in citrus fruits may be particularly irritating. Citrus can make your baby throw up, be fussy, or even develop a diaper rash. If you’re craving some vitamin C, it’s better to have some mango or pineapple.

9. Parsley or Peppermint

Parsley is a great garnish, and peppermint makes a tasty tea, but the issue with these herbs is they both come with the risk of limiting your supply, which makes it one of the things you should avoid while breastfeeding. They shouldn’t be a problem if used moderately, but be careful of any dips after meals, especially if you’re approaching a growth spurt where the baby will be hungrier than usual.

10. Highly processed food

Eating a balanced diet consisting of fresh, healthy foods is crucial. However, many mothers choose processed foods because they are readily available and prepared for consumption. Fries and donuts are highly processed foods typically rich in sodium, sugar, trans fats, and total calories.

People who consume highly processed meals are more likely to develop hypertension, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular problems. Additionally, it might affect the quality of breast milk, which might affect the health of a breastfeeding baby.

11. Caffeine

Caffeine sources include coffee, tea, herbal tea, and soda. Some of that caffeine may end up in your breast milk through consumption. It is one of the crucial things you should avoid while breastfeeding because newborns have trouble metabolizing and eliminating caffeine. As a result, your baby’s body can gradually accumulate a lot of caffeine, making them irritable, and they may find it difficult to fall asleep.

FAQs

Can You Take Tramadol While Breastfeeding?

Healthcare specialists should be aware that breastfeeding is not advised while receiving codeine or tramadol treatments due to the risk of severe adverse reactions in breastfed infants, including difficulty breastfeeding, excessive sleepiness, and severe breathing problems that could result in death.

Can You Give Blood While Breastfeeding?

Giving blood while breastfeeding is not advised. Losing blood can reduce a woman’s supply of breast milk since blood plays a vital role in its production.

Can You Get Lip Filler While Breastfeeding?

There have been no extensive studies regarding lip fillers‘ effects while breastfeeding. Although the small amount of these drugs injected into the lip is unlikely to have any adverse side effects, this procedure is still considered off-label; thus, your situation should be discussed with your injector.

Can I Use Icy Hot While Breastfeeding?

When breastfeeding, icy hot is usually considered safe to apply topically. The risk of absorption into the bloodstream or breast milk is low. If you want to be extra cautious, talk to your doctor to ensure they believe it is safe for your specific situation and their medical attention because they are the ones who know your health the best.

Conclusion

Diet plays a very vital role in breastfeeding since it has a significant influence on the composition of breast milk. For various reasons, breastfeeding mothers should be cautious about their food.

Some meals contain harmful ingredients to babies, while others can change breastmilk’s flavor, making breastfeeding more difficult. Always watch your baby for any reaction whenever you consume anything that may be questionable.

If you notice any reaction or the baby is sensitive to certain foods or drinks, you might need to avoid them because traces of what you consume can pass through to your breast milk. Consult your pediatrician if you have any concerns.

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