Q:

What should not be eaten when breastfeeding?

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Quick Answer

According to Parents, there are two foods to avoid when breast-feeding: fish and alcohol. Breast-feeding women don't need to eliminate fish from their diets completely, but they should avoid those high in mercury, such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. Some experts also recommend avoiding canned tuna. Nursing mothers should limit their alcohol consumption to one drink per day or less, and wait at least two hours before breast-feeding.

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Full Answer

Caffeine should be consumed in moderation, because it makes the baby agitated and causes sleep problems, according to Mayo Clinic. If a baby develops a rash, diarrhea or congestion soon after breast-feeding, it can be a sign of a food allergy, particularly if other family members have food allergies.

Mayo Clinic states that the most common causes of food allergies are eggs, peanuts, cow's milk, wheat, soy and corn. Mothers should avoid foods they suspect of causing a reaction for at least a week to see if it makes a difference. Before completely eliminating any foods from their diets, breast-feeding mothers should talk to their baby's doctor to avoid a nutritional imbalance. There is no reason to avoid strongly flavored foods when breast-feeding, even though they are be passed on through breast milk. Exposing the baby to different flavors makes it easier to introduce a variety of solid foods later.

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