For your baby’s sake, you should keep certain foods off your diet during the nursing period. Remember, breast milk comprises of nutrients passed on through your blood from the foods you eat, and will, therefore, affect the health and behavior of your loved one.
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Let’s take a look at some of the foods to avoid while breastfeeding.
Seafood with a High Mercury Content
A high mercury level is potentially dangerous for your baby’s delicate nervous system. Therefore, to keep your baby’s brain safe, avoid fish and seafood that has a high mercury content such as shark, marlin, swordfish, and king mackerel completely. Note that, although almost all fish contain some elements of mercury, mostly due to pollution, these top-predators carry lethal amounts of mercury and other chemicals and are therefore not fit for consumption. Instead, you should opt for low mercury fishes such as salmon and Pollock, maintained at about two meals a week.
If you care about the health and growth of your child, alcohol should be a NO go zone while breastfeeding. Remember, the percentage of alcohol in your blood is the same as that in your breast milk; High levels of alcohol will definitely affect the wellbeing or hamper your child’s growth. However, if you have to drink, it is advisable to take limited amounts; up to twelve ounces of beer and five ounces of wine in a week. It is also necessary to wait until your body clears off alcohol before breastfeeding.
Even though only a small amount of caffeine goes into your breast milk, it can be enough to deprive your infant of quality sleep. The good news is, you don’t have to keep off your coffee or favorite soda completely, just drink in moderate doses; three cups spread throughout the day should not have any effects on your baby.
Parsley, Peppermint or sage
Babies need plenty of milk to stay well fed, healthy and happy. However, these three herbs work on the contrary by reducing the amount of milk you produce, and that is why you should avoid them. Even little amounts should not have noticeable effects according to Dr. Hawkins. You should look out for any decrease after using any of these herbs and subsequently cut them off your diet.
All in all, put in mind that, if your baby experiences an allergic reaction or seems upset after breastfeeding, it is probably due to something you ate in a period of six hours and you should, therefore, contact your doctor or avoid it completely.