Breastfeeding? Eat This!
The American Dietetic Association recommends that breastfeeding moms consume 500 calories more than they would normally consume. Here are 15 healthy snack ideas!
Basic Nutrition for New Moms
Bowl of Whole-Grain Cereal
What’s great: The same blend of complex carbs, calcium, and lots of vitamins and minerals that make your morning flakes a smart choice are also what make them a great anytime snack.
Snack tip: Keep several varieties of cereal (and add-ins) on hand to avoid snacking boredom.
Cheese and Multigrain Crackers
Snack tip: Try reduced-sodium crackers or ones with reduced fat.
What’s great: Lower in sodium than many cheeses with the same calcium punch, yogurt can be dressed up (toss in granola or dried fruit for a heartier snack), eaten plain, or used instead of sour cream for a lower-fat topping.
What’s great: Blend 1 cup of low-fat plain yogurt with ice, 1 cup cut-up fruit, and a splash of juice for an easy sweet tooth satisfier without an overload of sugar or artificial sweeteners.
Protein powerhouses that they are, nuts also contain healthy amounts of unsaturated fat and fiber.
Snack tip: Craving something salty? Go for a handful of dry-roasted, lightly salted almonds.
Avocado Slices with Whole-Grain Crackers
Snack tip: Avocados are best eaten freshly sliced.
What’s great:Protein bars can be a smart mid-afternoon choice when you’re fading and craving something sweet.
What’s great: Yes, they’re full of protein and fat—but that’s what makes eggs such a smart choice for nursing moms. (Choose a brand that’s
fortified with DHA, that fatty acid good for babies’
developing brains, eyes, and hearts.)
Whole Wheat Pita with Hummus
What’s great: Hummus is made from chickpeas (which provide a nice dose of protein and flavor) and tahini (a sesame paste rich in calcium). Add the pita and you have fiber, too.
Snack tip: Add sprouts, lettuce, tomatoes, or grated carrots for more nutrition and crunch.
Small Bagel with Cream Cheese
What’s great: Chewy and satisfying, this is a snack you can really sink your teeth into. Opt for a multi- or whole-grain bagel when possible—but watch the size! A regular bagel is too big for a single serving. If you don’t have a small bagel, eat half a whole one.
Half a Sandwich
What’s great: Choose whole-grain bread and add what you like—cheeses, lean meats, lettuce or spinach, tomatoes, grilled eggplant, shredded carrots, etc. You can create a complete nutrition package: veggies, fiber, and protein all at once!
Carrots and Celery with Low-Fat Dip
What’s great: Carrots and celery are high in potassium, vitamin A, fiber, and water. A ranch or spinach dip can provide protein.
Nut Butter with Apple Slices
What’s great: A double-punch of protein and fiber! Adding PB to the apple can make you feel more satisfied—the protein and healthy fats will sustain you during your busy day.
Snack tip: Buy apples pre-sliced! Calcium ascorbate (vitamin C) will prevent browning.
What’s great: Fiber! And the more colorful you make your salad, the more nutrients you consume. Plus, since most veggies have a water component, salad is also a good source of hydration.
What’s great: Fiber and vitamins A, C, and E—fruit is loaded with nutritional good stuff. Like veggies, it also helps with new moms’ water intake.
Snack tip: Fruit’s a healthy, vitamin-rich, satisfying snack. Consider keeping it in the fridge: It can help thwart unhealthy snack choices!
More Nursing Diet Tips
Stock up. If any of the snacks can be prepped ahead, do so, and keep them in plastic containers. It will make grabbing a good, healthy choice when you feel hungry so much easier.
Hydrate! Drink six to eight glasses of water a day.
Small amounts of almost every medication you may take while breastfeeding will end up in your breast milk—and eventually in your nursing baby. What’s safe to take for relief from common ailments, and which medications are best avoided? Here are some generview gallery
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