Breastfeeding your baby provides the perfect nutrition to meet your baby's needs, according to Baby Center. However, some babies experience colic related to sensitivity to a food in a mother's diet. Because what you eat is ultimately what your baby eats, adopting a bland diet for breastfeeding moms whose babies have a tricky tummy can help.
A bland diet is also known as an elimination diet. In terms of breastfeeding mothers, it refers to moms who do not consume foods known to be highly allergenic. This includes dairy, eggs, citrus, soy, wheat, peanuts and tree nuts, according to KellyMom.com. Although most babies are not sensitive to these foods in a mom's diet, others may experience colic symptoms when they eat them.
Knowing when you should adopt a bland diet for breastfeeding can be as simple as observing your baby for signs and symptoms. These include fussiness after feedings, long periods of crying, difficulty sleeping, stomach upset, nausea and diarrhea, according to KellyMom.com. If your baby exhibits these symptoms, food allergies could be to blame.
If you have a family history of being allergic to a particular substance, it is more likely that your baby will experience the same allergy, according to What to Expect. A good example is peanuts, a common allergy in children. If you have grown out of this allergy, yet experienced it as a child, your child may be more susceptible to the allergy. One example of a bland or anti-allergy diet could be to avoid these substances altogether. Reducing spicy foods and highly herbed substances from your diet also may help.
If your baby is exhibiting signs of stomach upset, a bland diet can include choosing foods known to be the least allergenic in their category. Ask Dr. Sears recommends eating only the following foods: range-fed turkey and lamb, lightly seasoned potatoes or sweet potatoes, cooked green and yellow squash and pears. You may also consume rice and millet from the grains category. If this diet proves too bland for you, some less allergenic foods include sunflower seeds, carrots, salmon, oats, grapes, avocado and peaches, according to Ask Dr. Sears. Eat these only in moderation, however.
When consuming a bland diet and breastfeeding, it is important to ensure you get the proper amount of calories in your diet in order to nourish your baby, according to Ask Dr. Sears. Fear of eating the wrong food for your baby should not keep you from eating enough to keep yourself and your baby healthy. Aim to eat between 2,000 and 2,700 calories per day for optimal health, according to Baby Center.