Postpartum diet: Quick tips for lactating mothers

A nutritious postpartum diet is the most basic way to speed up post-pregnancy recovery and also help in the baby's growth and development. Here are some tips for lactating mothers.
Postpartum diet
Have a healthy postpartum diet for yourself and the baby. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Sneha Sanjay D Published: 19 May 2023, 12:00 pm IST
  • 175

Pregnancy and postpostpartum are two crucial phase in a women’s life. Intake of nutritious food during pregnancy supports overall growth and development of the little one to result in a healthy pregnancy outcome. But postpartum nutrition is also an equally important step for recovery. The right nutrition during after childbirth sets the stage for good health in the longer run. During the postpartum period, women’s energy levels are low, metabolism is sluggish, there’s a sudden surge in hormones and many more physiological changes are experienced. To combat this, the right postpartum diet is necessary.

Right nutrition and balanced meals have a strong impact on breastfeeding and growth of the newborn. But the benefits are far beyond.

Postpartum diet tips for a lactating mother

1. Sufficient hydration is the key to keep up the energy levels.
2. Proportionate intake of major nutrients (carbohydrates, protein and fat) will meet the caloric requirements.
3. Increase intake of fruits and vegetables to meet the fiber requirements. This will help to keep digestion issues at bay.
4. Curb caffeine intake to increase nutrient absorption and avoid sleep disturbances.
5. Restrict on the intake of empty calories to avoid unnecessary weight gain.
6. Concentrate on regular intake of galactogogues to keep the lactation ongoing.

Diet tips for lactating mothers
A mother’s diet plays an important part in breastfeeding. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Benefits of a healthy postpartum diet

Eating the right diet in postnatal time is important not just for the mother, but also the baby. This is a time when the mother needs to push the physical and mental limits of her body, as well as nurture a baby. If she eats right, it also contributes to the proper growth and development of the little one. Let us take some of the short-term and long-term benefits of a good postpartum diet.

1. Supports breast milk production

Intake of special class of nutrients named galatogouges like garlic, milk based beverages, gourd vegetables and certain leafy vegetables will help improve breast milk production. This would help in production of the necessary nutrients for the baby’s development.

2. Right diet helps to meet energy needs

The postpartum phase demands additional energy. There is a requirement of 500-600 kilocalories. So, a tailor-made healthy and balanced postpartum diet will meet this increased energy needs of the mother.

3. Quickens recovery

Nutrient dense meals and snacks containing carbohydrates, proteins, fats and other micronutrients will surely help the mother heal better and faster. A good postpartum diet will replenish all the nutrients required by the mother postpartum, aids in better digestion, improves immunity and improves metabolism.

Also read: Eating right after childbirth is essential! Keep these do’s and don’ts in mind

postpartum weight
Eating the right foods post pregnancy will help you bounce back. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. Helps you slowly get back to healthy BMI

It is very important to have balanced nutrition that supports additional energy needs, meets increased nutritional needs and help the mother get back to healthy Body Mass Index within the span of lactation period. It also ensures there’s healthy weight loss post pregnancy.

5. Improves stamina levels

The postpartum period is a roller-coaster ride for the new mother. She has to take care of herself and meet the newborn’s needs too. Without the apt nutrition, the stamina levels will not be maintained.

Select Topics of your interest and let us customize your feed.


6. Helps to battle postpartum health issues

Specific physical and physiological health concerns are common in postpartum period. These include anemia, constipation, urinary infections, hemorrhage, wound site infections, postpartum depression and more. Apt nutrition helps deal with and overcome these issues.

  • 175
About the Author

Sneha Sanjay D is a Senior Executive Nutritionist at the Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Bengaluru (Jayanagar). She is a Post Graduate in nutritional sciences with a specialisation on human and applied nutrition from Bangalore University. She has 10 years of experience in maternity, well-woman and child care. ...Read More

Next Story