Welcoming a child into the world is such a joyous and wonderful gift but can be initially overwhelming. A new mother may feel like an avalanche of new things to consider has descended, including baby safety, sleep patterns, and what to do when the little one is unsettled and cries. Among the many concerns new parents have is the best way to feed their new child. Dr. Robert Marshall, Ph.D. and co-founder of Quantum Nutrition Labs, has some seasoned advice to support healthy breastfeeding.
Dr. Marshall encourages pregnant women to take time to enjoy life and feel a sense of joy during pregnancy. However, new parents need to support a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby in several important ways. One of these is maintaining adequate nutrient intake to keep both mother and child healthy. Dr. Marshall emphasizes the need for adequate DHA: “Having adequate docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is one of the biggest concerns to think about. This is an end-chain omega-3 fatty acid that’s critical for the development of the fetus, especially the health of the brain and nervous system. It offers neurological support for both mother and fetus.”
“In addition,” Dr. Marshall explains, “shifting to a plant-based whole food diet can be incredibly helpful but be careful that you are getting an adequate amount of plant-based iron. Also, stay away from white flour, it’s just a digestive strain for your whole body.”
Dr. Marshall also has some personal recommendations: “When my children were born, they slept through the night the first day they came home because my wife was taking nutritional yeast. It turned out to produce so much breast milk that we actually had to cut back. However, that’s what you want: nutrient-dense milk that will keep the child nutrient-satisfied and offer them a wonderful night’s sleep as soon as they get home.” Breastfeeding has a vast array of benefits, which Dr. Marshall lists: “Breast milk is a wonderful source of protein, 50% complete protein, and is loaded with valuable nutrients, including glutathione.”
Dr. Marshall offers several steps that you can take to facilitate healthy breastfeeding: “Make sure you’ve got enough purified water during and following pregnancy. While breastfeeding, you need to drink one ounce of water per pound of body weight, each day. I would advise building up to this slowly to make sure you are accustomed to drinking this much water. Another critical issue with this much water is salt intake. If you break a sweat, you should be able to taste some saltiness in the sweat. Not having adequate salt can lead to constipation and other issues, so you can take a teaspoon or so of aid-dried sea salt and add it to a glass of water once a day. That ought to sort it right out.”
Listen to the full episode of HealthLine Live below to hear the rest of Dr. Marshall’s advice regarding pregnancy and breastfeeding support.