Nutrition should always be a priority, but when you’re having a baby it becomes even more important. For 9 months, the food you eat, fuels you and your baby. But after you give birth, the diet after delivery is just as important. The right postnatal diet helps your body recover and gives you the energy you need to care for your little one. The postpartum period begins after the delivery of your baby and ends when your body has nearly returned to its pre-pregnancy state. Postnatal care involves taking good care of yourself to rebuild your strength getting rest, good nutrition, and help during the first few weeks.
To ensure that your body receives all the nutrients, we have listed down 9 superfoods that you must include in your after pregnancy diet.
1. Green leafy veggies
Green leafy vegetables are a rich source of iron, folic acid, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and fiber and is a must-have in postnatal diet. They are low in calories and rich in heart-healthy antioxidants, which help in losing post-pregnancy weight. They also have thylakoids that promote weight loss. Leafy green veggies such as broccoli contain vitamin A which is good for you and your baby. So make sure to eat more of these leafy veggies like pointed gourd (parwal), apple gourd (tinda) and lotus stem (kamal kakdi).
2. Milk and milk products
Lactating moms need anywhere between 2.25 to 3.1 liters of fluids every day, which sums up to somewhere between 9 to 13 cups. When it comes to the amount of milk, a good rule of thumb is to drink enough to sate your thirst. Your baby absorbs calcium from breast milk for bone development. Therefore, have calcium-rich foods to replace the lost calcium in your body as part of your postnatal diet.
If you want to avoid milk thinking it may lead to gaining postpartum weight, then choose the low-fat versions of milk products. Include low-fat milk, buttermilk, yogurt into your postnataldiet. These products are good sources of calcium, protein and gut bacteria.
3. Whole grain cereals
A diet after delivery should definitely contain whole grains. They are rich sources of fiber and vitamin B complex, that help in preventing fat storage. Whole grains are known to boost body metabolism and prevent calorie retention. Oats are an excellent source of calcium, iron, proteins, and carbs. They are also high in fiber, which helps relieve constipation.
4. Fruits, nuts, and seeds
For your postnatal diet, replace snacks with fresh fruits, nuts, and seeds. Fruits are the sources of essential vitamins and minerals along with fibers. They will keep you full for a long time preventing unwanted cravings. Also, the fibre and pectin found in many fruits act as natural fat burners as well as metabolism boosters. Nuts and seeds are high in calories but with the right portion sizes, they can aid in weight loss after delivery.
Protein serves as your body’s building blocks. It’s the foundation for all your enzymes, hormones, and body tissues. After supporting your baby’s growth for 9 months and producing protein-rich breast milk, it’s necessary to replenish your own reserve. Foods like beans, seafood, lean meats, eggs, and soy products are rich in protein, which helps your body recover from childbirth. Aim for five servings each day, or seven if you’re breastfeeding. Protein sources like chickpeas and lentils, help in milk secretion.
6. Fenugreek seeds
Besides being an amazing contributor to weight loss, fenugreek seeds are also good for enhancing lactation in new moms. They are a rich source of calcium, iron, vitamins, and minerals.they are also known to relieve joint and back pains. For weight loss, it’s compound galactomannan gives fullness that will keep you not hungry for a long time. Methi seeds also boost the body’s metabolic rate that helps in fat burning, making them an essential part of diet after delivery.
Citrus fruits such as oranges provide you with vitamin C, which you need in abundance when breastfeeding. You can have either the fruit or the juice. Calcium-fortified drinks will benefit you.
It is said to be a nutritional powerhouse for new mothers. Like any other fatty fish, salmon contains DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), a type of fat, which is useful for your baby’s nervous system development. Although breast milk contains DHA naturally, the levels of this fat are higher in the milk of mothers who have DHA-rich foods. DHA also elevates your mood and plays a prominent role in warding off postpartum depression. It is therefore essential that you include this in your post-pregnancy diet.
Breastfeeding moms make up to 1 liter of milk a day, hence they are at risk of dehydration. Water is a quintessential contributor to milk production and an essential part of postnatal care. Also, it helps in keeping the mother’s body hydrated and detoxified which will help in getting a glowing skin too. Water also boosts the body’s metabolic rate that helps with weight loss.