Nursing Nutrition

I’m struggling with post partum nutrition. I have no idea what a proper portion size is for nursing moms. I lost all the baby weight in 2 weeks (I was sick throughout the pregnancy and barely gained anything). Now I’m rapidly gaining and overeating since I never full. I am struggling to get enough protein, since baby is sensitive to dairy (my protein powder is whey based). I’m in the mid/low 200s, I’ve had a long term weight issue.

Has anyone been there done that and have any advice? Are there some quality resources that you’d recommend looking at?


  • jgnatca
    jgnatca Posts: 14,465 Member
    What is your height, BMI?

    Potential protein sources other than supplements are all the meats, fish.
  • jgnatca
    jgnatca Posts: 14,465 Member
  • jgnatca
    jgnatca Posts: 14,465 Member
    For extra fullness make sure you are drinking enough. Also higher fat and higher fiber foods might help you fill up.
  • Cahgetsfit
    Cahgetsfit Posts: 1,913 Member
    Get vegan protein powder maybe? I can't use whey it upsets my stomach, but I use vegan protein and it's fine.

    Other than that, I can't really comment as I have no idea if nursing makes you hungry or anything. I tried to breastfeed but had no milk. I took double dose of motilium and would have to eat A LOT to get a tiny bit of milk. I put on a tonne of weight. Which was then hard AF to lose.

    When I ate less I had even less milk.

    Maybe there's some correlation between how much you eat and how much milk output but yeah, dunno. Can you ask your doctor at one of your post-baby check up sessions?
  • dechowj
    dechowj Posts: 147 Member
    When I was nursing, other than normal meals I continued to take my prenatal vitamin and drank TONS of water. When I was starving I would eat lots of fruit (mainly watermelon and apples), some oatmeal, or stir fry with quinoa instead of rice.
  • dsg2000
    dsg2000 Posts: 38 Member
    My sense from talking with other people and reading online is that how nursing affects nutrition is different for everyone.

    What I am currently doing (7 months postpartum here) is simply set my base activity level here to "active" (I have a desk job); I also eat back all my exercise calories. I also have it set for a slight deficit, since I wanted to lose the baby weight I gained - which I now have, and am edging into maintenance. This hasn't affected my milk supply at all; I did take herbal supplements in the beginning (fenugreek and blessed thistle), but haven't done that for a few months now.

    They say that bfing burns about 500 calories a day or 20 calories per 1oz. I'm lazy and haven't done a proper calculation for myself, however, but that seems to generally fall in line with what I did (e.g., raising the activity level to "active" gives me about 400-500 more calories per day to eat).

    But again, I think my overall sense is that it varies for everyone.... and it will be different depending on how many months postpartum you are, too. If you're genuinely really hungry all the time, you might try working on eating healthier/less calorie dense foods rather than trying for a specific calorie goal? As far as protein sources, I eat lots of fish - high in protein and low in calories, and tasty!
  • Lenala13
    Lenala13 Posts: 152 Member
    So what I remember from all the literature I read when I was full time BFing, the estimates we're that you'd need about an extra 500 calories per day. Probably less if you end up supplementing with formula.

    What I remember during those early years was being extremely sleep deprived, which I'm sure drove me to less than optimal food choices. I also had trouble getting back into a decent exercise routine due to lack of time, and the typical issues that come along with BF (engorgement, leaking, etc), which made me very much meh towards anything that involved sweating profusely. :\

    My recommendation would be ensuring you're getting all the nutrients that you need via your food for you and the baby. Maybe consult a dietitian on that if able? Try to get some sleep and some regular exercise (I know, easier said than done!) and see if that maybe helps with the hunger cues. I'm still recovering from all the weight gain I had during pregnancy and post-partum (I was one of those people who only had morning/all day sickness if I had an empty I ensured it was never empty, to my detriment).

    Good luck! Once you're getting more sleep and have a decent routine going, things will get easier! Take care of yourself when you can!
  • ElphieTMoLM
    ElphieTMoLM Posts: 19 Member
    For those who asked, I’m 5’5”, 231 current, 38 BMI. Pre-pregnancy 235, delivery @ 242, post partum low @220.

    Thanks for the protein advice. I’m only 10 weeks out so I’m trying to get infront on this before I put on even more.
  • kimothyschma
    kimothyschma Posts: 209 Member
    Nursing makes you so hungry it can be hard to maintain a deficit! I also found that cardio exercise like running made the hunger that much stronger. I am 5'5" too and I lost 65 pounds while breastfeeding by eating 1800 calories a day. I picked this number pretty randomly so it's by no means a recommendation! When I had that bottomless hunger feeling and I'd already eaten "enough" I would buy a bag of sugar snap peas or baby carrots and just eat the whole thing. Good luck. It's hard but it's possible.