Cravings are a often a difficult part of breastfeeding because of new hormones, postnatal depletion, lack of sleep and stress. Breastfeeding cravings for sugar, ice cream, carbs, candy, chocolate, brownies and anything else are extremely common, but also can be dealt with in a healthy way that won’t affect your milk supply.
Why does breastfeeding cause cravings?
There are a number of factors that can cause cravings while breastfeeding. Let’s look at a few of the most common ones, and how a safe and effective detox can help nursing mamas conquer these cravings.
Postnatal depletion is where new mothers are depleted of nutrients when baby arrives. This is because baby needs more nourishment in the last few weeks of pregnancy, taking more from mama. After birth, new mommies aren’t educated on the proper nutrition for healing and breastfeeding, but rather to eat enough calories. Calories are important, but even more important are the nutrients mothers need. Nutrient deficiencies often show themselves in cravings for foods that our brain confuses for sugar or brownies, rather than vitamin B 12.
Exhaustion is more difficult to combat because a new baby means no sleep. Lack of sleep increases cravings for carbs and fatty foods. It’s been proven that lack of sleep also increases appetite. Milk Dust helps to combat this by providing energy-boosting nutrients like vitamin B12 and superfoods like Chlorella and Spirulina.
After birth, there is a decrease in estrogen, increase in prolactin and other hormonal changes that can affect mood and cravings. Eating a healthy diet, full of nutrient dense foods with a supplement like Milk Dust can help combat some of these hormonal swings and changes. Red raspberry leaf in particular is shown to help balance hormones in women, and it can reduce some of the symptoms to hormonal changes.
These are the three main factors that come into play when facing food cravings while breastfeeding. New mommies are particularly prone to giving into these cravings because life is stressful with a new baby.
How to combat cravings while breastfeeding:
Once understanding where the sugar and food cravings are coming from, there are ways to help navigate through them in a healthy way that nourishes both mama and baby. One of the best ways to combat breastfeeding cravings is to resist them with a healthy diet.
Eating a healthy breastfeeding diet:
Your breastfeeding diet is very important to managing cravings while breastfeeding. By resisting cravings for a short time, like the 10-days we have in our program, and using a supplement to help you replenish nutrient stores, conquering cravings is possible. Just like many other things, there is an amount of will power necessary to make changes and resist the yummy foods. Some important foods for a breastfeeding diet include:
- All fruits and veggies (lots)
- Lean protein like ground turkey, tuna, clean deli meat, chicken and eggs
- Healthy carbs like oatmeal, sweet potatoes and quinoa
- Some nuts and beans
- Lactation herbs + supplements like Milk Dust
By focusing on these foods, you can support your body through lactation, lose weight and overcome the cravings.
Use a breastfeeding protein powder supplement:
Using a supplement like Milk Dust supports protein needs while breastfeeding, offers a quick and nutritious meal, and also provides additional nutritional support. Having a helper like this makes the process of overcoming sugar cravings easier, and can often help eliminate them all together. Milk Dust protein shakes are also yummy, so many mamas look forward to drinking their smoothie each morning, or making a dessert smoothie after dinner.
Drink lots of water:
Remember, breast milk is a liquid, which means that drinking more water can help with lactation. Headaches are usually a result of thirst, or dehydration, which also causes mixed signals often confused with hunger. We suggest drinking one glass of water before and after every meal to encourage satiation, hydration and to support milk production.
Start our 10-day Sugar Detox + Diet Plan:
Our 10-day sugar detox and diet plan is simple to follow, with general guidelines on what to eat and what not to eat. We guide you on foods that are going to help nourish your body, and your growing baby. We offer some amazing recipe ideas for smoothies, salads and dinners, which will give you some direction on what to cook to stay full. The 10-day program is a volume-based plan, where we encourage that you eat as many fruits and veggies as possible. Fruits and veggies provide the most nutritional bang for your calorie buck. By giving your body plenty of nutrients, your milk supply can flourish as you use stored fat for energy. The process is simple, but does require changing habits, being a bit uncomfortable for the first couple days, but the results are amazing!