One of the most basic issues that a nursing mother faces during the first days and weeks after giving birth to a child is the issue of drinking regimen.
Breast milk is 80 to 90 per cent water and mothers are concerned with how to achieve the sufficient level of hydration to have breast milk of a good quality.
How Much Fluid Do You Need?
Normally, a woman is recommended to drink from one to two liters of fluid per day, in order to maintain the level of hydration of the body and optimal metabolism.
That being said, 800 ml of fluid per day (including liquid from food) is the minimum possible amount of fluid needed for our body. If you drink less than 800 ml, you will experience tissue dehydration and excruciating thirst.
On average, a nursing woman produces about 1-1.5 liters of breast milk per day, depending on the age of the child. Where does a body take fluid to produce breast milk?
The fluid is taken from the blood plasma. It means that in addition to normal needs, a woman should drink another liter of fluid. On average, a nursing mother needs about 2-2.5 liters of fluid a day.
Many nursing women notice that they want to drink more after breastfeeding. This is due to the influence of the hormone called oxytocin, which contributes to better letdown reflex and regulates the mechanism of thirst.
During the first weeks of breastfeeding, women are often thirsty. This is normal. The body signals that it needs to replenish the reserves of fluid, so that dehydration does not occur.
What Should I Drink?
A nursing woman should pay attention to the amount and quality of fresh water she consumes a day. It should be bottled, filtered or boiled water.
Of course, a nursing mother can drink other beverages besides water. Choosing a drink, a mother needs to remember about its biological properties. Coffee and strong tea may overexcite the nervous system. That is why you should opt for these kind of drinks in the morning. Thus your baby will not be affected by caffeine in the evening and will not be so active.
What Drink Should I Cut Out?
Beverages that contain a lot of sugar can contribute to dehydration. They include sodas, fruit drinks and some alcohol.
- In addition to sugar, sodas are usually rich in different chemical substances such as food grade dyes and preservatives. These chemicals can cause negative effect on the physical state of a mother and a baby.
- Concentrated freshly squeezed fruit juices often irritate a stomach and can cause an allergic reaction in a child.
- Ethanol contained in alcohol can affect breast milk and nervous system of a newborn.
As you can see the hydration balance is very important for a nursing mother. In this regard, you should pay special attention to what you drink and eat. Always choose quality over quantity. Opt for for and drinks that will nourish your body and help you restore the depleted macro-nutrients.