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Eating healthy while breastfeeding doesn’t always come easy for new mamas. Throw in massive sugar cravings, and its a recipe for developing less-than healthy habits. Hormone fluctuations, lack of sleep, healing from birth and adjusting to life makes developing new healthy habits really hard. Especially if during pregnancy, healthy eating habits didn’t exist. Completely changing your diet is hard for single people with no children and 8 hours of sleep.
Breastfeeding also contributes to higher nutritional needs because you are supporting the growth and development of another human being. Calories are needed, but more importantly, nutrients are the driving factors to healthy lactation during weight loss. Because your body is wanting more nutrients, the signals often become criss-crossed because they intermix with unhealthy addictions to chemicals and fake foods, which confuses our brains and causes cravings.
See, our bodies are designed to basically eat fruits, veggies, animals, fish, nuts and other naturally occurring foods in our world. With the evolution of processing ingredients, creating “food” in laboratories and basically artificially flavoring all sorts of things, so it tastes AMAZING, we get accustomed to craving foods that not only taste good, but make use feel good too. Throw in how busy we are in society now, and the quick foods taste fabulous and arrive on our plates so easily!
As breastfeeding mamas, our bodies are trying to signal for more nutrients, but the signals get confused and twisted into cravings.
This makes dieting while breastfeeding very hard. We eat plenty of calories, but our bodies keep crying out for more, making it seem like we are insatiable. Really, we just have a higher nutrient demand, that can be helped with eating NUTRIENT-DENSE FOODS, and assisting our bodies with supplements like Milk Dust. Adding in extra nutrients are going to help with cravings, as well as offer lots of nutrients for baby too.
In my program, The Postpartum Cure, we focus on postpartum diet and nutrition through a meal plan specifically designed for weight loss while breastfeeding. Part of this program is to use protein shakes to easily consume lots of nutrients, in a little amount of time, and basically you can whip it up one-handed. The rest of the meals focus on nutrient-dense that keep your milk supply up. It is all available in an app, so it is really easy to navigate and work through, especially the recipes portion!
When switching over to nutrient-dense foods, things can feel shaky, which isn’t fun when things are already on edge as a new mama. The first few days there is excitement, but soon after that, our initial endorphin rush plummets, and we give up before we can make any real, positive changes. I recently watched a podcast by Dr. Caroline Leaf, who is a brain neuroscientists and fully believes that your mind can change your brain. She mentions that science proves you can change your brain in 7 days. Just sticking to your new habits for 7 days can start making changes in your brain! This is actually fairly difficult, but just know that if you grab a breastfeeding diet plan, and stick to it for just 7 days, you are making big progress.
The other reason breastfeeding and dieting is so hard isn’t actually related to breastfeeding. It is because we are so tired.
Pure exhaustion can take away your mental power to withstand cravings, as well as cause additional cravings because your body is completely out of wack from no sleep. Basically, when you shorten your sleep, your body starts telling you it wants high-calorie, feel-good foods to help boost you out of the exhaustion. Food is a quick, short term fix. I know for me, coffee only goes so far, then I wander around in a zombie-like state shoving things in my mouth just to keep my eyes open long enough. I’ve been there three times, and it is so hard. You can jump yourself out of this literally by jogging around your house or getting out for a walk. Exercise is super hard to do when you are this tired, but it REALLY, REALLY helps. Also, a nap really helps, but that isn’t always realistic…ever.
Milk Dust has a greens, energy boosting blend that supplies your body with a boost of B12, wheat grass and spinach. Basically a shot of nature’s energy boosters, which can help give you more energy overall throughout the day, without the caffeine and sugar crash later. It is a great way to help yourself stay energized, especially in the afternoon lull. For me it is 4pm when I seem to start crashing. My mind slowly deteriorates, and craves a good nap, but that’s just when the kids are waking up, grumpy and needy. It is a terrible combination, so having a healthy jolt of super foods can be better than another cup of coffee.
Another reason breastfeeding mothers can struggle with energy, and thus eat more, is lack of iron.
Many women are low in iron, or even anemic, and they don’t even realize it. I included B12 in Milk Dust to help with this, which can really improve energy levels.
“Vitamin B12 deficiency causes tiredness, weakness, constipation, loss of appetite, weight loss, and megaloblastic anemia. Nerve problems, such as numbness and tingling in the hands and feet, can also occur. Other symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency include problems with balance, depression, confusion, dementia, poor memory, and soreness of the mouth or tongue. Vitamin B12 deficiency can damage the nervous system even in people who don’t have anemia, so it is important to treat a deficiency as soon as possible.” Source.
Basically, if you have a deficiency, you can start feeling better. If you don’t, you still can benefit from a slight energy boost. B12 is needed for babies too! However, if a breastfeeding mother is deficient in vitamin B12, her infant may also become deficient.
Lifestyle adjustment, an increased need for nutrients, limited sleep and possible iron deficiencies can all contribute to why a healthy diet while breastfeeding seems impossible. It doesn’t have to be impossible, and it can be done if some steps are taken to push through the uncomfortable cravings, and supplements like Milk Dust are used to help your body receive the nutrients it needs to function optimally and thrive while breastfeeding.
Milk Dust is available for pre-order soon, so sign up to be on the VIP List, where you can pre-order at a massive discount!