Why is it important to still be careful of what I eat and do?As long as you are providing your baby with food and nutrition from your body, there is a chance that whatever you ingest will pass onto them. This is why it’s so important that you maintain a healthy diet full of fresh fruit and vegetables, and avoid processed foods that are high in salt and fat.
What should I be avoiding?
Advice ranges from all sources regarding lists of things to avoid, from caffeine and gluten, to soy and eggs. But the best advice is professional advice, and any specific questions or concerns you have should be directed to a doctor or paediatrician.
If you have allergies, it is unlikely you will be eating any foods containing those allergens. Even without allergies, however, doctors say it isn’t necessary to go out of your way to avoid foods that are most commonly allergens. The Australian Breastfeeding Association suggests that the most recent research shows that there is no link between excluding known food allergens and preventing the development of allergies. It might actually be beneficial to ingest these foods so that your baby builds a tolerance for them.
What about fish and alcohol?
You might have avoided these during your pregnancy due to concerns regarding neurological and developmental disorders arising in your baby. At least for the first three months of your baby’s life, it’s still best to moderate your intake of these.
Limit fish to two servings per week, and alcohol to the occasional drink – anything more than one at a time will raise your alcohol blood level to the point that alcohol enters your breast milk.