During pregnancy, expectant moms are hammered by books, TV shows, magazines and especially friends and family, to watch their eating.
Sushi? Off limits.
Alcohol? Not a chance.
Deli meat? Slice extra for Dad, none for Mom.
And then there are the random foods that their body turns against. For my wife, that was beef. Burgers and steaks – once staples – now induced nausea worse than morning sickness. (As an aside, our daughter loves veggies and has shown little inclination towards meat.)
But once the baby pops out (that is the technical term for delivery, no?), all bets are off! Eat away, new mom! Eat EXTRA food, too, since you’ve got that milk supply to build!
What’s tough to swallow is that the restrictions are lifted, despite the fact that 100% of baby’s nutrition still comes from mom.
As such, diet is incredibly important.
We’ve noticed changes in breastmilk and it’s impact on our daughter that are completely dependent on what my wife eats on a given day.
For example: consuming spinach gives the milk a faint green tint, while eating spicy foods can change the taste a bit. Gas-inducing foods, like beans, broccoli and cauliflower can pass their…ahem…effects…through to babies, too.
One adjustment we made early on in our daughter’s life was switching to lactose-free milk. I’ve been lactose intolerant since I was a kid, and that could be the first trait I passed on to her! (Yay??)
Here’s what I’ve learned over the past seven months: Dads, we play a really important role in helping Mom eat better. After 40 weeks of being PERFECT, it’s nearly impossible to maintain that pace. We need to set good examples, provide encouragementand support and help create a healthier environment.
This mindset has given us four rules:
1) Limit the junkfood in your house. If it’s not there, you won’t eat it.
2) Plan a week’s worth of dinners on Sunday. Even if you don’t keep to it exactly, a little planning goes a long way towards better eating.
3) Eating a good breakfast sets up the day. Building momentum throughout the day, good breakfasts lead to good lunches which lead to good dinners – and good snacking, too.
Chinese Takeout isn’t so bad once a week.