Breastfeeding food to avoid gassy baby
Foods to Eat or Avoid When Breastfeeding
Reviewed by Poonam Sachdev on June 26, 2022
It’s a good source of protein. Some, like salmon and tuna, also give you omega-3s, which your body needs. But what about mercury and other contaminants? You can have cooked seafood twice per week. Each serving can be up to 6 ounces, which is the size of two decks of cards. Choose types that are lower in mercury, such as salmon, tilapia, and trout. Avoid shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish, which have high levels of mercury.
Love hot sauce? Most babies can handle it and other fiery foods in your diet. But if your little one is gassy or colicky and gets diarrhea every time you sprinkle red pepper flakes over your pizza, cut back on the heat for a few weeks to see if that helps.
They’re full of flavor. But some herbs may affect how much milk your body makes. For instance, eating a lot of parsley could curb lactation. And too much sage and peppermint may cut your milk supply. For some nursing moms, even peppermint-flavored toothpaste and candies are a problem.
It’s rarely a problem. But see how your baby does. Tell your pediatrician if your tot gets skin problems, has trouble breathing after breastfeeding, or has other symptoms.
As refreshing as your cup of chai or Earl Grey may be, it has some downsides. It’s got caffeine, which can affect your sleep – and your baby’s. It may also make it harder for your body to absorb iron, which you need for energy. If you drink hot or iced tea, try not to sip it when you eat foods that are rich in iron, such as lean meat; dark, leafy greens; and fortified breakfast cereals.
What if you aren’t allergic, and you want to prevent your baby from developing an allergy? Sorry, but there’s no proof that you can do that by skipping specific foods. Cutting certain foods out of your diet may make the skin condition eczema less likely for your little one. Ask your doctor or pediatrician for advice.
Breastfeeding can make you thirstier than you usually are. If that’s the case, drink a glass of water every time you breastfeed. But no matter how parched you feel, don’t go for regular sodas or fruit drinks, which give you calories without nutrition.
It's best for your baby if you don't have any booze at all. But if you do choose to drink, don’t breastfeed until the alcohol has completely cleared your milk. For 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of liquor, wait at least 3 hours. Pumping doesn’t speed that up.
Common culprits include beans, broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. Bloating, burping, and passing gas are normal. But if your baby is gassy or has colic, avoid these foods for a few weeks to see whether they relieve the symptoms.
Both have caffeine. You’ll also find it in energy drinks and cola. If you’re lost without your latte, limit yourself to 2-3 cups per day of the brewed kind. Or you could switch to decaf.
IMAGES PROVIDED BY:
6) Getty, iStock
The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
La Leche League.
The American Academy of Pediatrics.
U.S. Department of Agriculture.
What You Can Do To Help Your Gassy Breastfed Baby
What are some common culprits behind your baby's gassiness? Learn the signs, foods that may cause gassiness in your baby, and how to soothe and relieve his or her symptoms.
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As a new parent, it can be stressful and upsetting to see and hear your baby cry. That’s especially true if you've checked off all the usual suspects— dirty diaper, empty belly, discomfort, or over-tiredness —and you still can’t seem to soothe your little one.
Gas is something that many newborns experience, and it can be painful for them! It isn't always the first thing that parents remember to consider, since it's not something easily visible.
Signs Your Breastfed Baby is Gassy
If you suspect excess gas could be the culprit causing your baby’s fussiness, there are several signs that may indicate you are correct:
- Burping. It’s possible your baby has swallowed too much air while nursing or crying for a long period.
- Spitting up. While spitting up is perfectly normal, gas that’s trapped in the stomach can push breast milk back up and cause your baby to spit up.
- Bloated tummy. This could be a sign that gas has built up in your baby’s stomach.
- Flatulence. Every baby toots, but if they’re doing so excessively, it could mean they have excess gas.
- Arched back, legs drawn toward the tummy. The discomfort from gas pains will make a baby try to adjust to alleviate it.
Gassy Baby Causes
Gas in a breastfed baby is not uncommon and can be attributed to several factors:
- Gulping while feeding. If your milk let-down reflex is strong, your baby may gulp your milk to keep up and swallow extra air in the process. If that’s the case, your little one may do better nursing in a more upright position, so he or she has better control over milk intake and flow.
- Introducing a bottle. If your baby is used to the breast and you begin feeding with a bottle, it may take some getting used to at first. As a result, he or she may swallow too much air while eating.
- Constipation. When your baby is constipated, they may have gas trapped in their tummies that they’re having a hard time releasing.
- Crying. If your baby has been crying for a long time, they may be gulping in air in the process.
- Mom’s diet. Food that you’ve eaten can make your baby gassy as well. Certain foods such as dairy, soy or wheat may contribute to gassiness in your little one. Keep a food journal of what you eat to see if you can pinpoint the culprit in your diet.
Foods That Make Breastfed Babies Gassy
Though a baby’s gas is not commonly linked to mom’s diet, there are certain gas-inducing foods that could give both a breastfeeding mom and her baby gas. These include:
- Fiber. Foods like bran, beans, and whole grains.
- Fruit. Citrus fruits, prunes, plums, peaches, or apricots.
- Vegetables. Broccoli, cabbage, and Brussel sprouts.
- Garlic. Garlic-seasoned foods like pasta dishes or garlic bread.
- Dairy. Yogurt, ice cream, or milk products.
- Carbonated beverages. If they make you burp, they could make your baby gassy too.
It’s not necessary to give up all your favorite foods when pregnant and/or breastfeeding. Health experts recommend only making dietary changes if you see a direct connection between something you’ve eaten and your baby's gassiness.
Additionally, if you’re still breastfeeding after your little one begins solids or finger foods, it’s easier to detect what food might be the culprit and then eliminate it.
Relieving Gassy Babies
There are several effective ways to help relieve your baby’s gas pains and soothe them. Try a combination of these to find what works best for your little one.
- Burp twice. Try to coax two burps out of your baby instead of just one.
- Sit upright. Hold your baby in an upright position while burping. This makes it easier to expel gas.
- Tummy time. Laying your baby on their tummy will help to push gas out.
- Bicycle exercises. Put your baby on his or her back and move their legs in a pedaling motion, similar to cycling on a bike. This helps with constipation as well.
- Massage the tummy. A gentle massage can help move gas out.
- Adjust baby’s latch. Make sure your baby is latching correctly to avoid swallowing too much air.
Don't worry, mama - Gas is typically a normal occurrence and most babies experience gassiness from time to time! With some minor adjustments, you can soothe your little one and help them get through the discomfort of gas.
Flatulence in children: help and treatment
Increased gas formation is a problem that accompanies almost all babies in the first weeks of life. This is due to the fact that the baby's body is just being formed. Adapting to life outside the mother's belly is not an easy task.
Dry initial milk formula adapted by Valio Baby 1 NutriValio for feeding children from birth to 6 months Read more
Intestinal flatulence is often confused with baby colic. From a medical point of view, there is no “equal” sign between these phenomena, from a practical point of view, they are, in general, one and the same. When a child is worried about flatulence, he becomes naughty, cries loudly, kicks his legs and refuses to eat. The baby is worried about sharp pains in the abdomen. Premature babies suffer from them more often than those born at term. Their digestive system is even more immature, and the musculature of the walls of the stomach and intestines is very poorly developed. Like colic, bloating begins to bother babies from birth, but significantly decreases (or completely disappears) by 3-4 months, when the child gets stronger. nine0003
Causes of flatulence in infants
Aerophagy. This is the name of the swallowing of air during feeding. The child may take the nipple or breast incorrectly, cry during feeding, rush, the mother may hold the bottle incorrectly. As a result, the baby “grabs” air, which enters the intestines and causes the formation of gases. Therefore, it is very important to establish the correct feeding process.
Immaturity of microflora. nine0012 The baby is still very small, his body is just learning to work, the microbiocenosis (microflora) has not formed. Flatulence will pass with age. If the problem is tormenting an older baby, pay attention to the child's reaction to complementary foods or changing the mixture. If the baby is unwell, consult a doctor to alleviate his condition.
Diet of a nursing mother. Gas in the baby's intestines can be caused by foods that the mother ate. A nursing woman needs to be more careful about her diet. It is worth using dairy products, fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, cabbage, yeast bread, pastries, nuts with caution. It is better to avoid carbonated drinks altogether. nine0003
Delayed bowel movements. Under such conditions, gases accumulate, this gives the baby more and more discomfort.
How to help a baby with flatulence?
Help the baby empty the intestines. Effective massage of the tummy (make circular movements around the navel clockwise), gymnastics (press the baby’s legs bent at the knees to his tummy, then straighten them), a warm bath will help (it’s good to add a decoction of chamomile or string). If mild methods don't work, you can use an enema or a gas tube. Remember that you need to act very carefully! nine0003
With flatulence, children's teas with medicinal herbs - fennel, chamomile, dill, anise and cumin help. You can buy dill water in the pharmacy in the drug production department (keep in mind that it is stored in the refrigerator and no more than 10 days).
To prevent gas formation, make sure that the baby eats in a calm environment, not distracted, not in a hurry. Before feeding the baby, it is useful to put it on the tummy for 5 minutes (this is a kind of massage). After the baby has eaten, hold it with a “column” so that excess air comes out with a burp. nine0003
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Breast milk is the best food for a newborn baby. It contains all the necessary nutritional components that fully meet the needs of the child and are necessary for his healthy and harmonious development. nine0003
why a mother's diet should be balanced, what foods are not allowed, and which are possible with breastfeeding
Are there any dietary restrictions for a nursing mother? Are there really forbidden foods that can cause allergies in a child?
The maternity hospital gave you a diet to follow while breastfeeding. How strictly should it be followed? Do I need to increase portions and drink more fluids to get a lot of milk? I also heard that some products, such as lemons, can spoil the taste of milk, and the child will refuse to breastfeed altogether. It's true? nine0003
The nursing mother's diet is an old myth that still lives in some Russian maternity hospitals and children's clinics.
The more varied the mother's diet during breastfeeding, the more health bonuses both she and her baby will receive. Most likely, with a balanced and varied diet, your weight will return to pre-pregnancy, but even if this has not happened yet, the breastfeeding period is not the best time to lose weight. You need to provide yourself and your baby with the proper level of nutrients, and this is difficult to do on rigid diets. nine0003
However, there are still foods that you should stay away from. I'll tell you more about everything.
What the science says about nutrition during breastfeeding
The diet of a nursing mother appeared at a time when knowledge about the nature of allergies was not enough. Not fully understanding the whole mechanism of its appearance, doctors, just in case, postponed acquaintance with potential allergens until later. It was believed that by the age of three, the child's immune system would mature and be able to withstand the encounter with the allergen. nine0003
What to do? 08/13/20
What should I do if I suspect I have an allergy?
In reality, everything turned out differently: the earlier the child got acquainted with the potential allergen, the lower was the risk that he would develop an allergy. In modern recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of food allergies in children, mothers are advised not to limit the diet, but to try to make it more varied.
Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Food Allergy in Children - KFAPDF, KB 361
This is the position of leading child health organizations: the best nutrition for a mother during breastfeeding is a balanced and varied diet.
Healthy Diet During Pregnancy and Breastfeeding - WHO European OfficePDF, KB 93
Breastfeeding Diet - US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
all five food groups:
- Vegetables and fruits.
- Complex carbohydrates: cereals, bread, potatoes.
- Protein sources.
- Dairy products.
- Fats and oils.
And you also need to maintain diversity in each group. For example, eat vegetables and fruits of different colors, use not only meat, but also fish, eggs and legumes with nuts from protein sources.
Breastfeeding Mom's Diet Advice - US Department of Health
And the ratio of animal to vegetable proteins should be approximately the same. Among complex carbohydrates, you should give preference to whole grains and also do not forget about diversity. It turns out that buckwheat and boiled turkey for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day is not a healthy diet option for mom. nine0003
Breastfeeding - European Community of Pediatrics, Gastroenterologists, Hepatologists and Nutritionists CommentaryHealth Canada Diet
If your diet is balanced and varied, do not take supplements or multivitamins, except for vitamin D. They are needed in rare cases when the diet of a nursing mother is poor or there are health problems. But the doctor should prescribe the composition and dosage of supplements during breastfeeding.
Your appetite will probably increase, this is normal. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that a breastfeeding mother may need up to 500 calories in excess of her usual calorie intake to ensure adequate milk supply. But those 500 calories should come from healthier food sources, not soda chips.
Vitamins: what foods contain and how to supplement
Why a balanced diet is important
Such a diet will help maintain the health of the mother and provide the necessary nutrients to the child. During breastfeeding, it is important to provide yourself with the proper amount of energy, protein, and some important micronutrients: iron, calcium, vitamin D, and folic acid.
These micronutrients may not be enough, because during pregnancy and the onset of breastfeeding, some of them are spent on the needs of the fetus, and then the baby. You can get these substances from dark green vegetables: spinach, broccoli, green beans, as well as dairy products, eggs, legumes, meat and fish. nine0003
How much does breastfeeding cost? . In addition, the child is more likely to follow the family's eating style as they grow older. The more varied and healthier your diet, the greater the chances of accustoming a child to it. nine0003
But unhealthy eating habits can lead to future weight gain and negatively affect food cravings. A study of 1,459 mother-baby pairs found that high body mass index and unhealthy eating habits were more common among children whose mothers followed the so-called Western style of eating, which is high in ultra-processed foods, high-calorie, sweet and fatty.
What you shouldn't be afraid of in your diet
Mothers often blame their diet on their baby's restless behavior or minor skin rashes. nine0003
The American Academy of Pediatrics states that only 2-3 out of 100 breastfeeding babies are allergic to any food in the mother's diet.
But by blaming everything on food, we mask the real problem or, conversely, overestimate the significance of some ordinary phenomena, such as newborn acne or prickly heat. If in doubt what kind of rash it is, talk to a competent pediatrician. If the pediatrician suspects a connection between a child’s poor health and food, he will ask you to keep a food diary - this way there will be a potential culprit. nine0003
How to help a newborn with colic
By eliminating this product for 1-2 weeks, you will either confirm the hypothesis or continue to look for another suspect. But does not need to immediately remove all products: this can lead to an imbalance in nutrition, fatigue, nervousness and poor health.
If a pediatrician forbids eating certain foods without complaints about the child's well-being, this is a reason to look for a second opinion. Here are the foods that pediatricians often ban. nine0003
Cow's milk. Those children who have a reaction to their mother's food most often have it on cow's milk: the baby may experience abdominal discomfort, colic, skin rash.
But excluding cow's milk in advance, just in case, will not lead to the prevention of allergies in a child. On the contrary, a 2021 Swedish study found that babies whose mothers drink relatively more cow's milk during breastfeeding have a lower risk of developing food allergies than those whose mothers drink little or no milk. The same is true for other potential allergens: if they are excluded, this will not help to avoid allergies in the future, but, on the contrary, will increase the risk of its occurrence. nine0003
No need to remove potential allergens from the diet
There are foods that are potentially allergenic: milk, eggs, fish, peanuts, soy. To date, there is not enough scientific evidence to recommend that breastfeeding mothers restrict their diet. There are no differences in the prevalence of allergic diseases in the groups of nursing mothers who avoided milk, eggs and other allergens, and mothers who did not follow any diet. nine0003
Fish. Separately, it should be said about fish: it is an important part of a balanced diet for any person, especially a nursing mother. Eating fish affects the proper development of the brain and nervous system of the child and reduces the risks of obesity, asthma and allergies in him at an older age.
Mom's fish intake and baby's cognitive development - MDPIPDF, 523KB
Omega-3s and reducing the risk of allergies in the unborn baby - PLOS Medicine
Two servings a week are enough to keep mother and baby healthy. One serving is your palm without fingers. nine0003
Limit swordfish, marlin, bigeye tuna, king mackerel or shark. This is due to the high risk of exceeding the permissible level of mercury in their meat. Such types of fish are rarely found in Russia, but if you live in another country or order them specially from afar, then show moderation. It is better to give preference to other options: salmon, herring, saury, cod.
Foods that give mom gas. There is a myth that a mother and her baby have the same reaction to foods. In reality, gases from the gastrointestinal tract of the mother cannot enter the bloodstream and from there into breast milk, so the discomfort in the mother does not mean the obligatory colic in the baby. nine0003
However, when food is digested, certain proteins enter the bloodstream and can then pass into mother's milk. Some children may be sensitive to protein and react to it with increased gas production and nervousness. The reaction can be to any product, even to buckwheat or a green apple, and you can find out with the help of a food diary.
How food passes into breast milk - La Leche Liga
Garlic, spices, spices may change the taste of breast milk, but this does not mean that they should be eliminated. The breastfeeding support association La Leche Liga believes that regular consumption of these products will help the child get used to the family diet before introducing complementary foods. Babies begin to get used to these aromas even in the stomach, when they swallow amniotic fluid, so spices should not be ruled out during pregnancy. nine0003
What should be limited in the diet
The probability that a child will feel bad from some product in your diet is small, but still there. Therefore, some products should be consumed in limited quantities, and some should be completely excluded for the GV period.
Alcohol. The safest option is not to drink alcohol during breastfeeding. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention believes that sometimes you can drink a glass of wine, but in the next 2 hours after drinking, you should not feed your baby. Even without HB, there is no safe dose of alcohol, each glass is your personal choice and risk. And during breastfeeding, it is also a responsibility for the life and health of the baby. nine0003
Is it true that wine is good for the heart and helps you live longer?
Thermally processed products of animal origin. These are fish, meat and eggs. If you eat them raw, you can become infected with dangerous bacteria: listeria, salmonella, or botulinum bacteria. They are not transmitted through breast milk, but are not safe for the mother herself - you will probably have to take antibiotics, and this may affect the preservation of breastfeeding. That is, it's not about the products, but about the cooking method: if you want a steak, don't deny yourself, but ask for a well-dan. nine0161 The same with sushi and lightly salted fish: take baked rolls or hot types of fish, and instead of poached eggs - normally boiled.
Coffee. The recommended amount of caffeine is up to 300 mg per day. How many mugs it is depends on the method of preparation. The baby may have a reaction to coffee, as well as to any product, but this is an infrequent occurrence.
How much caffeine is in a cup of drink
|Amount of caffeine, mgnine0234
|Can of Coke, 330 ml
The number of caffeine, mg
Coca-Cola bank, 330 ml
What is the result
The diet of a breastfeeding mother is a myth.