Doctor's Plaza Health Magazine - - Breast Feeding -

1. Diet for a healthy breast­feed­ing mom

• Eat a well-balanced diet for your health

• Don't count calo­ries

• Aim for slow and steady weight loss

• In­clude a va­ri­ety of healthy foods

• Choose good fats

• Take ex­tra steps to avoid con­tam­i­nants

• Eat fish – but be picky

• Go easy on the al­co­hol

• Drink plenty of wa­ter and limit caf­feine

• Con­sider the fla­vors of what you eat and drink

• Keep tak­ing your vi­ta­mins

• Daily food and meal plans for breast­feed­ing moms

2. Signs that baby is get­ting enough breast milk

Your breast­feed­ing baby is prob­a­bly get­ting enough nour­ish­ment if:

• Your breasts feel softer af­ter nurs­ing (be­cause your baby has emp­tied some of the milk that was mak­ing them firm).

• Your baby seems re­laxed and sat­is­fied af­ter a feed­ing.

• Your baby con­tin­ues to gain weight af­ter gain­ing back the weight she ini­tially lost af­ter birth. (Most ba­bies lose up to 7 per­cent of their birth weight and then re­gain it by the time they're about 2 weeks old.) A rough guide­line: Your baby should gain about 6 to 8 ounces a week for the first four months, then about 4 to 6 ounces week per from 4 to 7 months.

• Your baby wets at least six di­a­pers a day af­ter your milk comes in. In the first few days, when your baby is get­ting only your thick, nu­tri­ent-rich colostrum, she may have only one or two wet di­a­pers a day. But af­ter your baby starts get­ting reg­u­lar breast milk, she’ll start hav­ing a lot more wet di­a­pers.

• In the first month, your baby has at least three stools a day, and they lighten to a yel­lowy mus­tard color within five to seven days af­ter birth. She may have less fre­quent bowel move­ments once she’s a month old or skip bowel move­ments for sev­eral days now and then. Once she’s eat­ing solid foods, at 4 to 6 months, she’ll prob­a­bly go back to hav­ing at least one bowel move­ment a day.

How you can safely breast­feed­ing while have an oc­ca­sional drink

• Wait at least two hours af­ter you fin­ish a drink be­fore nurs­ing your baby to give your body a chance to clear the al­co­hol.

• Your blood al­co­hol level (and the level of al­co­hol in your milk) is gen­er­ally high­est 30 to 90 min­utes af­ter you have a drink, al­though that time – and the length of time it takes the al­co­hol to leave your body – varies from per­son to per­son.

• You can time your drink so that your baby won't be nurs­ing for a few hours af­ter­ward by hav­ing it right af­ter a feed­ing, for ex­am­ple, or dur­ing one of your baby's longer stretches of sleep.

• Or you can pump and store your milk be­fore hav­ing a drink, then feed your baby ex­pressed milk from a bot­tle. (Pump­ing af­ter you drink won't clear al­co­hol from your sys­tem any faster – it will still take at least two hours.)

• An­other op­tion is to feed your baby for­mula in the hours fol­low­ing your al­co­hol con­sump­tion.

• To ward off de­hy­dra­tion, down a glass of wa­ter in ad­di­tion to the al­co­holic drink. It's also a good idea to eat be­fore­hand or when you're hav­ing your drink. This helps lower the amount of al­co­hol in your blood and your milk.

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