By Melissa LeBreton
Breast milk is the best food for your baby however; sometimes the food that the mother consumes can cause wind or colic symptoms or aggravate reflux in their baby. This doesn’t mean to switch to formula as this can also aggravate the problem and won’t necessarily eliminate these symptoms. It just means careful elimination of certain foods and retrial to find the offending foods.
A complete elimination of the foods listed below is the quickest way to improving the symptoms but may be also hard on the mother considering time constraints and fatigue. Eliminating one at a time is longer but sometimes easier in determining food intolerance.
If doing a complete elimination, restrict your diet for at least 2-3 weeks and then retrial one at a time and look for any change in symptoms. Keeping a record of the foods trialled and symptoms is a good idea.
Foods that may potentially cause wind or aggravate reflux in breastfeeding mothers:
- Dairy products (the biggest culprit!)
- Caffeine such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate
- Wheat, corn, soy
- Egg whites
- Peanuts and other nuts
- Citrus fruit
- Brassica family: cabbage, onions, garlic, brussel sprouts, broccoli, capsicums, cauliflower. Less likely to cause problems when cooked.
- Nicotine (not as a food) but transferred through the milk or passively can be an irritant as well as lowering the mothers level of prolactin, the hormone that allows her to persevere during these trying times.
Be patient it may take a week or 2 before the offending food is out of your system.