Tips for Breastfeeding and Nutrition
Breastfeeding Tips for You
Breastfeeding, or nursing, is very healthy for not just your baby but for you as well. While breastfeeding is natural, it is not always easy. Here are some tips to help you improve your chances for breastfeeding success.
Skin-to-Skin is the basis for initiating breastfeeding and establishing a good latch. Your baby should be skin-to-skin and have unlimited access to the breast immediately after birth. Your baby should be kept skin-to-skin as much as possible in the first few weeks after delivery.
- The number of feedings should be changed to 8, not 7.
- The number of bowel movements should say 2-4, not 5
- For feeding cues, it should say, “put hands to mouth” not hands to lips
2. Find Your Best Attachment Position
If this is your first time or your third time, you will need to navigate what the right position is for you to help your baby latch on. The ﬁrst several days after birth provide the best opportunity for you and your baby to learn to breast-feed. Use the first few days to get your position and attachment right. Try different breastfeeding positions to help your baby latch on better. Don’t forget to make sure you are comfortable. Choose a chair or a glider that has support, line up your baby with your breast and guide the baby into place.
3. Starting foods with Baby
Starting at 6 months baby food can be slowly introduced to your infant. Signs that infant may be developmentally ready include holding their head up, sitting up with support and showing interest in food. Start by adding 1 new food at a time for about 4 days to your baby’s diet to see how he/she does with it and assess for allergies. Between 9 and 12 months, soft table foods can be introduced to the infant. Examples include soft cereals or mashed fruits and vegetables.
*Someone should always be with baby when they try new foods to watch for signs of choking*
4. Don’t Get Overly Anxious About Milk Supply
Knowing whether your baby is getting enough milk is often what new moms are stressed about. It can be hard to tell if you are producing enough milk but a few ways to ensure your baby is well-fed is to:
- Count the diapers. Dirty diapers is an easy way to tell a lot about your baby’s eating habits. Most babies should have 6 to 12 wet diapers and five yellow bowel movements each day.
- Check for fussiness. Is your baby sleeping and seems content? If so, it most likely means feeding is not an issue for your little one. If they seem to be crying and furiously sucking on their fingers, they are probably still hungry.
- Doctor visits. At each well visit, your doctor will weigh the baby and plot it on a growth chart. Babies typically lose body weight due to fluid loss after birth, but they should gain it back within 14 days. From then, babies should gain roughly 5 to 7 ounces a week.
5. Be Patient
Like anything new, breastfeeding takes time, practice and patience. As a new skill for you and your baby, breastfeeding can be more challenging than it is for others. If you find yourself getting discouraged or angry at yourself while trying to breastfeed, stop, reset and try again.
6. Pay Attention to Your Nutrition and Well-Being
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle for yourself is just as, if not more, important when breastfeeding. To do this:
- Eat healthy and well-balance meal. Include lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grain and protein-packed foods such as lean meats, beans and dairy products.
- If recommended by your healthcare provider, take multivitamins and additional supplements
- Stay hydrated! Aim for at least 8 glasses of water a day to stay hydrated, Breastfeeding uses a lot of fluid so try to steer clear from sugary drinks.
- Take advantage of times to rest. Rest as much as you can and try to sleep when your baby sleeps.
Breastfeeding is a journey and we know breastfeeding can be overwhelming at times. Trying these tips may help you make the most of your time. Contact your local Tapestry of Health WIC location for breastfeeding support.
Nutrition Tips to Help You Live a Healthy Lifestyle
Many find navigating a healthy diet difficult. But good nutrition is a critical part of your health and development. Here are 5 tips to help you kick-start your nutrition journey.
1. Healthy Meals and Snacks
Choosing the right foods to serve at meals and snacks is an important way to ensure an overall healthy diet. Meals and snacks should include a variety of foods from the following 5 food groups, Fruits, Vegetables, Whole Grains, Dairy and Protein. Visit choosemyplate.gov for more information
2. Choosing Beverages Wisely
Drinks can be just as important in your child’s diet as food, but it can be difficult to decide which drinks to offer. Water is important for keeping kids hydrated. Water recommendations vary based on the child’s age, but should be between 2-5 cups per day. Drinking 16-24 oz of milk can be a helpful way for children to meet their Calcium and Vitamin D needs. Offering 4-6 oz of 100% juice can count as one serving of fruits and vegetables. If possible, do not offer sugary beverages (IE: soda and sports drinks) to your child on a regular basis
3. Eat more Fruits and Vegetables
Eating more fruits and vegetables can be easy. You can use your WIC dollars and the Farmers Market checks (FMCs) to increase the amount of fruits and vegetables in your diet. Here are a few ideas to add more fruits and vegetables to meals and snacks. Add berries and granola to yogurt for a yummy parfait or stir frozen broccoli into a casserole or pasta dish.
** For more information on the FMCs or to schedule an appointment contact your local WIC office at, firstname.lastname@example.org **
4. Exercising as a Family
Exercising as a family is an important way for your children to help build bonds with you. It is especially important for kids to exercise so they can maintain a healthy weight, and get out energy. Ideas for exercising as a family include going on a walk, playing Tag or hide and seek, or dancing.
5. Contact a WIC Nutritionist
WIC Nutritionists can provide additional information on any of these topics. In addition, they can discuss dietary needs during pregnancy and breastfeeding, healthy snack ideas, weaning and much more. You can contact a WIC nutritionist via e-mail at, email@example.com. Please be sure to include your name, a good contact method and your questions in the e-mail.