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What Foods To Avoid While Breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding is an effective means to improve your bond with your baby. It is beneficial for you and your baby. Your breast milk gives all the requisite nutrients to your newborn baby. It fills hunger and thirst and boosts immunity in newborn babies. As a mother, you have a release of feel-good hormones that facilitate you to get rid of post-pregnancy weight and lower your cancer risk.   

According to Dr Archana Agarwal, a gynaecologist in Bangalore, women who breastfeed their newborn babies need to pay special attention to their diet. Whatever they eat leaves a direct impact on their babies. So, it is crucial for you (as a mother of a newborn baby) to be aware of what foods to eat and what foods to avoid. Here, in this post, have a look at what foods you should avoid while breastfeeding your baby:

Fish with high mercury 

Eating fish with high mercury levels can affect your breastfeeding. Breast milk with high mercury content may affect the natural way of your baby’s neurological growth. You must avoid eating fish and seafood if your doctor asks you to avoid it. Fish or seafood to avoid are as follows:

  • Bass
  • Shark
  • King mackerel
  • Swordfish
  • Tilefish
  • Prawns 

Gassy foods 

If your baby is gassy or colicky, you should leave consuming certain vegetables to notice whether they relieve symptoms or not. On your doctor’s instruction, you should avoid eating beans, broccoli, cabbage, and brussels sprouts. 


If you have or your family members are allergic to peanuts, you must avoid eating peanuts. The allergens present in peanuts can develop in your breast milk and may make your newborn baby allergic to peanuts. In return, your baby could suffer from many health problems like:

  • Rashes
  • Hives
  • Wheezing
  • Cough  

Alcoholic beverages 

You should never drink during pregnancy and breastfeeding. During pregnancy, alcohol can cross the placenta and interrupt the way of your baby’s natural growth. Your drinking habit can lead your baby to have mental and physical growth issues. Like before and during pregnancy, you should avoid drinking until you breastfeed your newborn child. 

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Several gynaecologists across the world suggest women avoid caffeine, present in tea and coffee, intake while breastfeeding newborn children. Regular intake of caffeine may interrupt the production of milk in your breasts. As you notice your child is experiencing irritability or insomnia, you should leave taking coffee. Caffeine can decrease haemoglobin and iron content levels in your child.    

Citrus fruits 

Citrus fruits are great for relaxation and a rich source of vitamin C. Consuming these fruits can disturb your baby’s tummy if he/she is acidic. You should avoid consuming them as you notice your child is acidic or has digestion problems. Here are the citrus fruits you should avoid:

  • Lemon
  • Orange 
  • Grapes 
  • Citron
  • Bitter Gourd
  • Key lime 
  • Clementine
  • Tangerine 


Like tea and coffee, chocolate stimulates the brain and uplifts your mood. If you are breastfeeding your baby, you should avoid having chocolates. It is, as chocolates contain a compound, theobromine, which leaves the similar effect of caffeine on your baby’s growth. 

Apart from the above, you should avoid consuming garlic, peppermint, and dairy products if they are allergic to you. The allergens can enter into your baby’s body through your breast milk and cause health issues. In brief, you should discuss with your doctor what foods you should avoid and what foods you should eat before starting breastfeeding to your newborn baby.

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