What to eat in the postpartum diet: menu to take care of mother and baby

The postpartum period generates many doubts, as it is a delicate and adaptive moment, with many news for the mother and family.

Food receives special attention because it provides the nutrients needed for breastfeeding.

This is also a period of recovery and protection, and it is necessary to put together a menu that covers the mother’s caloric and nutritional needs.


What can’t you eat after giving birth?

Various foods should be prioritized in the postpartum period, but others should be avoided.

After delivery, it is necessary to take some care in feeding. Breast milk is influenced by the mother’s diet, so some products should be avoided and others prioritized.

Be it normal or cesarean delivery, some restrictions and new habits can be adopted to make this period more peaceful and healthy.

It is always important to seek medical help to clarify doubts and receive guidance in relation to the menu, but some tips can help and clarify doubts:


After cesarean surgery, some care must be taken. In the first 24 hours, feeding will be done by means of serum and water, in the hospital. After that, feeding with solids is introduced, gradually.

But some restrictions on feeding are necessary for the postpartum period to be more peaceful and healthy:

  • Do not eat foods that the mother is allergic / intolerant, avoiding reactions in this delicate postpartum moment;
  • Do not eat foods that are in the history of allergy / intolerance of the father or family of the baby, as there is a small possibility that the newborn has the same allergy or intolerance due to genetic factors;
  • Do not consume, or avoid as much as possible, processed or processed foods, which can cause stomach discomfort for mother and baby;
  • Avoid meats with a fatty or rare cut, especially for women with a history of keloids, as they can cause difficulties in the healing process;
  • Do not drink alcohol and avoid excessive drinks with a high dose of caffeine. Alcohol can reduce the production of breast milk and be transmitted to the baby through breastfeeding. Too much caffeine can interfere with the baby and mother’s sleep;
  • Do not over-consume foods with a lot of sugar, such as cakes, sweets and desserts. Excess can increase the risk of obesity of the mother and cause agitation in the baby;
  • Avoid the excess of industrialized drinks such as soft drinks, juices and ready teas. In addition to the high dose of sugar in the composition, it is possible that there is caffeine in the composition, negatively influencing the sleep cycle of the mother and baby.

It is important to maintain a varied and healthy diet, divided into 6 small meals a day.

As breastfeeding can generate a caloric expenditure of about 600 kcal, it may be that the obstetrician guides you to a reinforced menu, which increases by up to 400 kcal per day – the values ​​may vary according to the number of feedings that the baby needs , mother’s metabolism and routine.


The normal delivery has a faster recovery, with discharge in 48 hours in general.

Food care is similar to cesarean delivery, with alcohol restriction and high doses of caffeine and sugar, processed or processed foods and foods that may cause allergies in the mother or a history of intolerance in the family.

Can the mother’s diet cause colic in the baby? How to avoid?

Yes, the mother’s diet can influence the appearance of colic in the baby. But it is also a common symptom and it usually appears in the first months of life, due to the baby having a stomach in the process of maturation and enlargement, being thus sensitive to some foods.

Medical guidance is important to clarify doubts. In addition, the mother should also observe whether, after breastfeeding, the baby has any discomfort.

If the child has constant crying after breastfeeding, and this is repeated a few times, you can reduce or remove the foods that were consumed at the last meal, thus trying to identify which foods cause colic.

That is, the idea is to look for patterns in food that may be causing cramps. If the baby is in pain after breastfeeding in the morning, it may be that milk, coffee or some other food in that meal is the cause.

There are no studies proving that specific foods cause or increase colic, but there are reports of mothers who consumed some foods and after breastfeeding the baby had some kind of discomfort or colic.

  • Bean;
  • Soy;
  • Peas;
  • Lentil;
  • Red meat;
  • Broccoli;
  • Cauliflower;
  • Brussels sprouts;
  • Cabbage;
  • Cabbage;
  • Asparagus;
  • Cow milk;
  • Chocolate;
  • Coffee.

It is necessary to control the amount of intake of these foods, avoiding excess. So that large quantities of some substances are not transmitted to the baby through breast milk.

Legumes (soybeans, peas, lentils), beans and red meat have carbohydrates that are difficult to absorb, which may require further fermentation in digestion. Remnants of this fermentation to breast milk, thus causing colic in the newborn.

The protein in cow’s milk, which was consumed by the mother, can generate adverse reactions in the child, as the stomach is not yet prepared to receive and digest it.

Caffeine consumed in excess, present in coffee and some soft drinks, can be the cause of agitation and worsening of colic in the newborn, in addition to caffeine interfering negatively in the sleep cycle of mother and baby.

Excessive intake of chocolate can also aggravate discomfort for the baby – many chocolates contain cow’s milk and caffeine in their composition.

Some vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale and asparagus) are rich in sulfur, and excessive consumption can cause stomach discomfort for both mother and baby.

Can you eat rice in the postpartum period?

Rice consumption is safe in the postpartum period

Yes, there is no specific restriction for the grain of rice – the care that can be taken is not to ingest the rice or any other food in excess, since the excess can bring stomach discomfort for mother and baby.

It is important to seek medical advice and appreciate natural foods and varied meals, consuming a healthy and balanced diet.

Postpartum menu option: what to eat in the ward?

The postpartum menu is designed to assist the mother in the first month and to meet the energy needs of the mother and baby. The diet can be set up according to the mother’s preference, but based on nutritious foods.

During this period, the monitoring of a nutritionist is essential to receive guidance, clarify doubts and adjust eating habits.

It is important to appreciate natural foods such as lean meats, eggs, vegetables, fruits and vegetables, as they contain calcium, iron and minerals. These components are important in postpartum recovery, and will provide the baby with nutrients through breastfeeding.

In general, a varied diet without excess, accompanied by water intake, and done every 3 hours provides the necessary nutrients.

It is worth mentioning that drinking water is important, because it influences milk production.

Check below two examples of menus that can meet the mother’s caloric expenditure in this period.

Option 1

The first option totals an average of 1800 calories, but it is only a suggestion to be adapted. Remember to always talk to professionals who monitor the postpartum period, as well as never to start a diet or change food without professional assistance.


  • 1 glass of orange juice;
  • 2 slices of wholemeal bread;
  • 2 slices of ricotta cheese;
  • 1 medium slice of melon.

 Morning snack

  • Fruit salad with apple, banana, papaya, and strawberry.


  • Red cabbage, lettuce and tomato salad;
  • 3 tablespoons of brown rice;
  • 1 piece of grilled fish;
  • 2 tablespoons of broccoli or cooked carrot.

Afternoon snack

  • 1 cup of yogurt.


  • 1 plate of vegetable soup;
  • 1 medium grilled chicken fillet;
  • 3 tablespoons of yam puree.


  • Herbs tea;
  • Baked banana with cinnamon.

Morning snack (after breastfeeding)

  • 1 medium apple.

Option 2

Another option that can be suggested and adapted to the postpartum routine is this one, which has an average of 1950 calories:


  • 1 medium slice of papaya;
  • 2 slices of wholemeal bread with curd;
  • 1 cup of coffee with skim milk.

 Morning snack

  • 1 mashed banana with 1 tablespoon of oat bran.
  • 1 cup of mint tea.


  • Tomato salad, with beets and grated cucumber;
  • 1 cup of cooked wholegrain pasta;
  • 2 tablespoons of bolognese sauce;
  • 3 tablespoons sautéed zucchini.

Afternoon snack

  • 1 orange.


  •  Lettuce salad, arugula with pieces of cheese;
  • 1 medium-sized steak;
  • 3 tablespoons of brown rice;
  • 2 tablespoons of steamed broccoli.


  • ⅓ medium sleeve.

Morning snack (after breastfeeding)

  • 1 glass of fruit yogurt.