A few days back I went to the hospital for my younger one’s vaccinations. I wanted to be sure everything was up to date before school reopened. There I saw many new moms with infants and babies in the paediatric section. When I looked at them, I observed the same emotions which I had gone through a few years ago when my elder one was born. The post-pregnancy hormones, the exhaustion, and the concern for their babies…it all looked very familiar.
One thing which I used to worry about the most was Nutrition as my elder one was a premature baby. As a nutritionist, I knew the value of right nutrition and how it can help growth and development of a baby. I always wanted best for my daughter and good nutrition was at the top of the list. Being a new mom, I had my own concerns and doctors helped me understand the relationship between a mom’s diet and a healthy baby.
Mom’s nutrition makes a big difference as whatever she eats goes to the child. Thus, it should have all essential nutrients which are needed for a baby’s development and most importantly, brain development. The term for this is Feed IQ. It means feeding a baby right food for right development. Feed IQ is a term which is not only for a new born but also something which should be considered from conception till the child is 2 years old. A mom’s diet plays an important role in feeding IQ to her child.
Good cognitive development depends on good nutrition for both mom and child and good nutrition depends on a good diet.
A good diet for an expecting mom and a new mom must include all the essential nutrients. I remember my mom told me to include foods like fennel seeds, fenugreek, nuts etc. to increase the milk supply. But the focus should be a right diet so that the milk a baby gets has all nutrients.
A breastfeeding mom needs to have a diet with all essential nutrients like calcium, iron, and folic acid. But two nutrients which are important for a baby’s cognitive development are DHA and Vitamin E. Vitamin E has antioxidant properties and prevents the oxidation of DHA.
DHA is an omega 3 fatty acid which is the main component of breast milk. Since Vitamin E is important, moms can get it from natural sources like fruits and vegetables which are rich in Vitamin E. Natural Vitamin E sources are nuts, spinach, broccoli and various vegetable oils like sunflower oil, soybean oil, etc. Recently I came to know about SimMom which has natural Vitamin E in it and can help moms to get the right nutrition while feeding their child.
As a new mom, I had thousands of questions in my mind. But I took some right decisions for my baby and today I am sharing my learnings with you.
My learnings from my experiences as a mom:
- Make sure to eat healthy right from the time you conceive as baby’s health is directly proportional to moms’ diet.
- You are not alone. All moms go through this phase.
- If you are a breastfeeding mother or a formula feeding one, it doesn’t matter. The main concern should be right nutrition. Formula milk is good too. So don’t feel guilty.
- Take care of your nutrition first. A healthy mom means a healthy child.
- Just remember that we are all still women, and mothers, whether we breastfeed or not. There is enough judgment around for women. Just enjoy this phase and cherish it.
- Last but not least, do things that make you happy as a happy and healthy mom means a happy and healthy child.