The mother who is feeding her baby should pay careful attention to her diet. By so doing she knows that she is supplying the baby with the food nutrients which are so essential for proper growth and development.
Many women who realize the necessity of a good diet during pregnancy fail to realize that when the baby is born it is still necessary to eat the right foods. Not only is this of extreme importance to the baby, but also to the mother’s health.
There is, however, no need to become over-anxious about food. If nutritious foods have been eaten during pregnancy, it will be easy to continue eating them after the baby is born.
what are the special diet requirements during pregnancy and lactation?
- Firstly, it is essential to have plenty of milk— at least 1½ pints each day. This may be drunk plain or made into beverages of various kinds, taken on cereals or made into junkets, custards or other milk puddings.
- One of the most important minerals supplied by milk is calcium, and since the calcium requirement during lactation is twice as high as that of a normal adult, the necessity of obtaining sufficient milk will be clearly seen.
— Important Nutrients
- The requirements of all nutrients are increased during lactation, but besides calcium, those most likely to be lacking are protein, iron, vitamin B1 and vitamin C.
- The first-class protein foods are milk, cheese, meat, fish and eggs, so these should be eaten in liberal amounts. To obtain sufficient iron, liver, either lamb’s fry or the liver from some other animal, or kidney should be eaten at least once per week.
- A serving of whole grain cereal is important because it helps to provide sufficient vitamin B. It is also a good plan to take some type of wheat germ product, particularly if a whole grain cereal is not eaten.
- Vitamin C will be supplied by fresh fruits and vegetables. Oranges are a very good source of the vitamin, but particular care should be taken to see that the vitamin C intake is sufficient during the months when oranges are expensive and difficult to obtain.
- Paw paw and rock melons are good sources of vitamin C, and tomatoes contain valuable amounts.
- It is essential to drink sufficient fluid; this may be taken as water or in some other beverage. It will also probably be found that the appetite increases. This is quite natural, as extra calories or energy units are required during lactation.