AYUSH Dietary Recommendations for Lactating Mother
The transformation of female, from a woman to a mother is the happiest lifetime event, but this happiness is gained only after undergoing tremendous physical exertion during labour. The women become extremely debilitated physically & mentally after the delivery & there are more incidences of backache, weakness etc. Lactation starts from this phase of sutika. Breast milk is the optimal food for almost all infants in the first year of life. In Ayurveda stanya (Breast milk) is formed from aahar rasa (digested food juice)
Therefore, to revert to the normal body tissues approximately to a prepregnant state and for successful lactation, apart from general dietary rules, lactating mother should follow certain specific dietary conducts during first 45 days after the delivery.
- Considering the strength and digestive power of Sutika (Recently delivered mother), she should take easy to digest, liquid diet like gruels (Yavagu) made up of Chaval (Rice)/Yava (Barley), Daliya (Crushed wheat), Mudga yusha (thick soup of Mung bean/green gram) with sufficient amount of Ghee/Oil during the first 7 days.
- Food of Sutika shall be processed with Deepaniya dravya like Jeera (Cumin seeds), Maricha (Black peeper), Shunthi (Dry ginger) and Pippali(Long pepper).
- 8th day onwards Jangalmamsa rasa (meat/chicken soup) if accustomed and normal diet can be practiced.
- For maintenance of mother's nutritional status and optimum lactation, traditional recipes (having galactogogue properties) can be used (Methi Laddoo or Shunthi(dry ginger) Laddoo.
- These laddoo can be prepared by using Methi (Fenugreek), Shunthi (Dry ginger), Nariyal (Dry coconut), Ajwain (Carom seeds), Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus Willd.), Saunf (Fennel seeds), Gond (Tragacanth or acacia gum), Khas khas (Poppy seeds), Chandrashoor (Lepidium sativum L.), Shatawari (Asparagus racemosus Willd.), Vidari (Pueraria tuberosa (Willd.) DC.), Gud (Jaggery) and mixture of various dry fruits
- Mother should drink Milk medicated by adding Maricha (Black pepper) and Pippalimula (Root of long pepper)(1-2 gm powder with 200 ml milk); or Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus Willd.) powder / granules (5-10 gm with 200 ml milk)
- Use of Sahijan (Drumstick leaves) and Lashuna (Garlic) in everyday dishes (smoothie, soup, vegetables, dosa)
- Use of Methi (Fenugreek) seed and leaves may be included in the diet of new mothers.
- Use of Gud (Jaggery)/ Palm Sugar/ Gud Khanda (Brown sugar)/Desi khanda in place of sugar.
- Fortification of Aata (Flour) with Shatawari (Asparagus racemosus Willd.) for making Roti/chapatti. (30 gm Shatavari powder for 1 kg aata)
- Avoid factors causing suppression of Breast Milk- like Krodham (Anger), Shoka (Grief), Langhan (Taking light diet), Aayaasam (Excessive physical exercise), Ruksha-annapaanam (Food devoid of oily substances) etc.
Source : Ministry of AYUSH
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