It's just as essential to eat healthy postpartum as it was while you were
Today we will be your postpartum nutrition guide!
Foods to Eat During Postpartum
It requires a lot of energy to recover from the delivery, to care for your
little one and to generate liquid gold (AKA breastmilk).
You need to select nutrient-dense, nourishing foods to help you.
Eating nutritious foods after giving birth will make you feel better both
emotionally and physically — and who wouldn't want that?
Stay hydrated throughout the day.
Adequate hydration is important for mood, energy and cognition. It is
particularly important while you are breastfeeding. It would help if you
were drinking up to 3 liters of water a day.
(that’s around ten 8-ounce glasses).
You don’t need a fancy test to see if you are hydrated. The color of your
urine is a good indicator of hydration. Pale yellow urine means a great
job! Dark urine indicates you need more water! Thirst is not a great
indicator as you could already be dehydrated when you are thirsty!
TRUE! Most moms need between 1800 and 2200 calories per day. If
you are breastfeeding add 500 calories more! Eating less than
1800 calories could impact your energy level and mood. You should talk to
your healthcare provider or a nutritionist to figure out what is right for
Try spreading out the calories throughout your day instead of just 3 big
meals so you can keep your energy up for your whole day.
Nutrient dense food are foods that are high in nutrients but
relatively low in calories. These foods are packed with vitamins,
minerals, complex carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats. Choose
foods that are rich in protein, Vitamin D, Calcium, Iron, Vitamin C , B
vitamins. These will best support your postpartum needs.
Having the occasional muffin is fine. Just try to limit your intake of
processed foods and refined carbs. These treats will feel good but after
the initial sugar spike it will leave you with less energy.
Remember half of your plate should include fruits and vegetables. The other
half is split between protein and whole grains.
Choose from some of these nutrient dense food choices:
Fruits and vegetables
Oranges/ tomatoes (Vitamin C)
Avocados (the good fat)
Kale (super nutrient dense!)
Berries ( Antioxidants)
Leafy greens (iron)
Broccoli (B vitamins)
Whole grains: brown rice, oatmeal, farro,
Lean protein: fish, beef, and soy foods
Skim or low-fat milk, almond milk, oatmilk (calcium and
Need a snack? Keep some of these around for a quick nutrient-dense
Whole-grain crackers or veggies with hummus
Nuts ( walnuts, almonds)
A cup of whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk
A hardboiled egg with some veggies
Low-fat cheese with a piece of fruit
Peanut butter on an apple
Plain Greek yogurt with berries
Foods Not to Eat During Postpartum
In general, no foods are forbidden. Instead, women are urged to follow a
well-balanced, diverse diet. However, there are certain foods and drinks
that you should avoid after childbirth.
High exposure to elevated levels of mercury will have long-term
consequences on the infant's central nervous system. As
a consequence, they can encounter delays or weakening in:
fine motor abilities
development of speech and vocabulary
Almost all fish contain mercury. You can eat 8 to 12 ounces a week of fish
and shellfish that are lower in mercury. Five of the most commonly eaten
fish that are low in mercury are shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon,
pollock, and catfish.
Avoid shark, swordfish, tilefish, and king mackerel.
Caffeine use should be limited when breastfeeding because minor amounts
will get through your breast milk and accumulate in your baby over time.
Still, up to 300 mg a day is usually considered healthy
— around 2–3 cups (470–710 ml) of coffee or 3–4 cups (710–946 ml) of tea.
Even if you are not breastfeeding you should try to limit caffeine intake.
Too much caffeine can interfere with your sleep quality!
As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), not drinking
alcohol is the safest option for breastfeeding mothers. On the other hand,
an occasional drink is not known to be harmful as long as you're vigilant
about the volume and timing (1 standard drink, at least 2 hours after to
Keeps supporting your physical and mental wellness with lots of fruits,
vegetables, whole grains, protein, and calcium-rich foods!
Your and your baby's body will tell you what works and what doesn't.
Although changing your diet may seem challenging at first, it will be worth
it when you and your baby are healthier and well!
As always use MaternalWell text support for any general questions for our
specialists or book a one-to-one private consultation with our pregnancy
and postpartum nutritionist.