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What juices are safe while breastfeeding?

When you’re breastfeeding, it’s important to be mindful of what you put into your body, as some foods and beverages can affect your milk supply or the taste of your breastmilk. Many new moms wonder what juices are safe to drink while nursing. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll discuss which juices to embrace or avoid, provide tips for introducing new juices, and share juice recipes optimized for breastfeeding moms.

Benefits of Drinking Juice While Breastfeeding

Fruits and vegetables are vital when breastfeeding. Juices made from these nutritious ingredients offer an easy way to hydrate while also providing key vitamins and minerals. Research shows that drinking fruit and vegetable juices can:

  • Increase vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidant intake
  • Improve hydration
  • Support milk supply when drinking recommended amounts

Some juices like orange, grapefruit, or prune can also help relieve postpartum constipation. When choosing freshly squeezed or low-sugar varieties, juices can be a healthy complement to a balanced breastfeeding diet.

Juices to Avoid While Breastfeeding

While many juices provide benefits, some may cause issues for breastfeeding moms. Use caution with the following:

1. Unpasteurized Juices

Unpasteurized, raw juices may contain harmful bacteria like Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria. These can make you sick and contaminate your breastmilk. Only drink pasteurized juices or those prepared safely at home.

2. Green Papaya Juice

Green, unripe papaya contains latex that can stimulate uterine contractions. This is used medicinally to induce labor but is not recommended while breastfeeding as it may reduce milk supply.

3. Herbal Teas and Juices

Herbal juices made with herbs like sage, peppermint, parsley, or oregano may negatively impact milk supply when consumed in large amounts. Use caution and limit intake of homemade herbal juices.

4. Pomegranate Juice

Some infants may react to the high tannin levels in pomegranate juice. Observe your baby’s reflux or gassiness when drinking pomegranate juice and discontinue use if their symptoms worsen.

5. Juice Cleanses

Juice cleanses providing only fresh juices and no solid foods can leave you lacking sufficient calories, protein, and nutrients for breastfeeding. Modify as needed by adding nutritious smoothies or snacks.

6. Excess Fruit Juice

Limit high sugar fruit juices like apple, grape, or cranberry to no more than 4-6 ounces per day. Excess fructose from juice can cause gassiness in mom and baby.

Best Juices to Drink While Breastfeeding

Focus on low sugar vegetables and fruits when selecting juices. The following are nutritious options that may even boost milk supply:

Juice Key Nutrients Breastfeeding Benefits
Beet Iron, magnesium, antioxidants Increases milk production
Carrot Vitamin A, antioxidants Boosts immune support for mom and baby
Celery Hydration, electrolytes Replaces fluids lost during breastfeeding
Cranberry Vitamin C, antioxidants Prevents urinary tract infections
Cucumber Hydration, vitamin K Supports milk supply

Leafy greens like kale, spinach, or chard and fruits like citrus, mango, or peach also make excellent juice. Just be sure to introduce new flavors slowly and watch for any reactions from baby.

Tips for Introducing New Juices While Breastfeeding

  • Start with no more than 1-2 ounces of a new juice at first.
  • Drink freshly made juice to avoid degradation of nutrients.
  • Consume juice between meals as a snack, not as a meal replacement.
  • Drink slowly and alternate with sips of water.
  • If baby has an adverse reaction, wait 2-4 weeks before trying the juice again.

Pay attention after introducing a new juice to watch for signs of sensitivity in your baby like gassiness, irritability, rash, diarrhea, constipation, or congestion. If you notice anything, stop drinking that juice and try again after a few weeks once it has cleared from your breastmilk.

Breastfeeding-Boosting Juice Recipes

Try these nutritious juice blends optimized for breastfeeding moms:

Glowing Skin Juice

  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1-inch piece ginger
  • 1 cucumber

Vitamin C from citrus promotes collagen production for glowing skin while hydrating cucumber soothes postpartum dryness. Ginger adds anti-inflammatory benefits.

Lactation Boost Juice

  • 1 beet, greens removed
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 apple
  • 1-inch piece ginger
  • Dash of cinnamon

Beets and carrots provide iron, vitamin A, and antioxidants to support mammary health and milk supply. Apple lends sweetness and ginger aids digestion.

Immunity Juice

  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1 cup pineapple
  • 1-inch piece turmeric or ginger
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 cucumber

Citrus, pineapple, turmeric, and spinach offer immune-boosting vitamin C, antioxidants, and phytochemicals for mother and baby.

The Bottom Line

When choosing fresh, low-sugar varieties and keeping portions in check, fruit and vegetable juices can be safely enjoyed as part of a healthy breastfeeding diet. Focus on produce-packed low-sugar blends over fruit juice. Introduce new juices slowly and discontinue any that seem to cause sensitivity in baby. With some mindful moderation, juices can hydrate and nourish breastfeeding mothers.