My eating habits took turn for the worst in my third trimester of pregnancy so I knew I needed to jump full on into the Whole30 Challenge come January. My baby girl was due at the end of November so I would have roughly 1 month to prepare myself once she arrived. I breastfed my first two children so I planned on doing the same with my third. I was a little nervous about cutting so many foods out of my diet while breastfeeding but I was confident I could make it work. For those of you who aren’t familiar with what the Whole30 is read this post here first.
The products and information listed in this post are to the best of our knowledge. We share with our readers what has been successful for us in our own lives. Visit Whole30.com for full nutritional guide to ensure the products and food you consume are compliant.
Before I began my second round of Whole30 this month (Tracy and I did the Whole30 last year for the first time. Read about it and see our results here.) I was vacationing in Utah with family enjoying homemade rolls, cinnamon rolls, breadsticks, lasagna, ice cream, cookies, my mom’s famous caramels, you name it, I had it. My mom spoils us with all her homemade treats when we all get together and I was having no problem producing plenty of milk. I would be lying If I said I didn’t think cutting out all that extra sugar would have an effect on my milk supply.
Well, I’ve almost completed my 30 days of Whole30 (tomorrow is day 30!) while breastfeeding and I have had no problem feeding my little one. In fact, I think it has been so great for the both of us that I have no intentions of stopping. I feel great, I’m losing weight, I have a ton of energy, I sleep most the night(when I’m not up pumping or feeding Makenna), and all my emotions seem to be in check. After all, can cutting out all forms of sugar, dairy, legumes, grains, preservatives, MSG, etc. really be a bad thing? In my eyes, no way.
What is great about Whole30 when breastfeeding?
There is no limit on the amount of calories, grams of protein, carbohydrates, or fat, you consume. That eliminates a lot of stress for me especially because I need to consume enough extra calories to keep my milk supply up. Yes they have recommend 3 meals a day, no snacking, and limiting your fruit intake to name a few but they’re not rules. The program says,
“As long as the ingredients are all compliant, you’re still 100% doing the Whole30, no matter how you choose to use these in your program.”
What Worked For Me?
Whenever I feel the need to have a smoothie I do. Do I ever have more than one a day? No. I rarely even have one everyday. I keep frozen bananas, mixed berries, spinach cubes (blended spinach and water frozen in ice cube trays), and Silk unsweetened almond milk on hand at all times.
If I’m hungry I eat. My favorite snacks are homemade almond butter, tuna, apples, bacon, and homemade larabars. Again, I didn’t consume these daily, just when I needed something to hold me over until the next meal or pre or post workout.
I include an extra source of fat with every meal. Almonds, guacamole, ghee, and bacon are my favorites. Melissa Hartwig has said that sipping on coconut water is a good option for breastfeeding moms if you like coconut water. I don’t like the taste so this isn’t something I do, but a great idea.
Lots of water
You can’t produce any milk if you don’t drink water. I make sure to always have it handy and probably drink a minimum of 1/2 gallon – 1 gallon a day.
Breastfeeding moms tend to be hungrier more often and should just eat when hungry regardless of the Whole30 recommendations to only have 3 meals a day. It’s always a good idea to have compliant food ready to eat so you’re not tempted to grab your kid’s fruit snacks when you suddenly feel like you haven’t eaten in 3 days. I make sure my fridge is always stocked with easy snacks and I have my next meal ready or ready to prepare. If you need ideas for meals see our 30 Day Whole30 Meal Plan. Tracy and I started a Whole30 Facebook group for the month of January that will continue on for anyone interested in a little extra support or for those of you who just want to look for ideas.
If you’re on the fence about doing a Whole30 while breastfeeding than you have already taken that first step by doing some research. As mom’s we all want what’s best for our children and I think that eating a diet full of whole, clean foods is absolutely the best option for you and your little one. Doing a Whole30 may seem extreme, difficult, or even impossible, but let me tell you, If I can do it, YOU can do it! Feel free to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or ask any questions in the comments below.
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