Breast milk is best for your baby.

Health Canada, the Canadian Paediatric Society, and the Dietitians of Canada recommend that you exclusively breastfeed your baby for the first 6 months and that you continue to breastfeed for up to 2 years or longer along with complementary foods.

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Breastfeeding tips before bringing your baby home

While your baby is prepping for her first moments in the outside world, your body is making its final preparations for her first meal.

Your breasts reach their full size towards the end of your pregnancy. They might enlarge again after delivery until your milk comes in. They also might begin to leak a thick, yellowish milk called colostrum (hey, we didn’t choose the name). This is normal. Colostrum is packed with nutrients and antibodies; it will help give your baby a great start.

Plan ahead for your mealtimes

If you are planning to breastfeed, you will have to be as careful with your diet as you have been throughout your pregnancy. What you eat, your baby eats. Health Canada recommends that breastfed infants get a vitamin D supplement of 10 µg (400 IU) per day, so prep for that.

Tips for lactating moms

Continue to plan your meals by following Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide. Lactating moms can get a personalized menu plan of their own at www.eatrightontario.ca.

Continue to eat two servings of calcium-rich foods every day to meet your daily calcium requirement of 1,000 mg.

Drink plenty of fluids to help maintain your milk supply.

Before baby is born, plan ahead for nutritious meals after she arrives home. Try to cook and freeze a few simple meals that can be quickly reheated, and stock up on nutritious foods and snacks.

Reference:

Dietitians of Canada. Guidelines for Drinking Fluids to Stay Hydrated. 2014.

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