Can You Drink Soda While You're Breastfeeding?

There are many known benefits, for both mom and baby, for breastfeeding. While many moms know that they should still eat a healthy diet, they still have many questions as to what they should really be eating or drinking, like whether drinking soda while breastfeeding is safe. This is a common question for many moms and we will answer this question and more of your concern.


Is It Safe to Drink Soda While Breastfeeding?

Have a soda every once in a while should not cause any problems for mothers who are breastfeeding. If you do have the occasional soda, be sure to limit how many you consume only one or two a week. You can drink the soda just after you have breastfed your baby to reduce the amount of caffeine that can be passed on to your baby. A baby who fusses while they are feeding after you have drank a soda can indicate that you should not drink the soda anymore.

Caffeine can cause concern for many parents. When drinking large amounts of caffeine, this can lead to irritability, jitters, and insomnia. These side effects of too much caffeine can also be the same for a nursing baby. If you consume five or more cups of coffee a day, you may notice some of these effects with your baby. For babies that are full term or over 3 weeks old, caffeine may not affect them if you consume less than five cups of coffee a day. Preterm babies may be more sensitive to caffeine and can have difficulty sleeping or be difficult to soothe after being affected.

Soda contains around 45 milligrams of caffeine while a cup of coffee can contain up to 200 milligrams of caffeine. Though drinking soda while breastfeeding may be better than drinking a cup of coffee, you should better avoid your caffeine intake. Be aware that caffeine can be found in other sources as well. Black teas can contain up to 120 milligrams of caffeine and iced tea will contain just a little less than hot brewed tea. Energy drinks should be avoided as they can contain up to 500 milligrams of caffeine. Chocolates and gum will also supply you with a small amount of caffeine with each serving.

What's Safe to Drink While Breastfeeding?

1. Water

While it is often recommended you drink an average of eight glasses of water a day, breastfeeding moms need to drink more. Water is one of the best things you can drinking while you are breastfeeding, but you'll want to aim to consume 13 glasses a day or a little more than three liters a day.

2. Flavored water

If you get bored with drinking just plain water every day, you can add some flavors by infusing your own water. Infused water will not only keep you hydrated and on track with your water consumption for the day, it is also a way to reduce sweet cravings and adds some more vitamins and nutrients to your diet. Add some cucumber, melon, watermelon, strawberries, lemon or raspberries to a pitcher of water and top it off with some ice. This is one way you can eliminate drinking soda while breastfeeding and reduce your caffeine intake.

3. Seltzer water

Seltzer water will give you the impression that you are drinking a soda but without all the caffeine, sugar and additives. Just like water, you can drink plain seltzer or flavor it with fresh fruits or cucumber. Just combine your fruits in a pitcher of seltzer, add some ice and refrigerate!

4. Tea

Some herbal teas can be safe to drink while you are breastfeeding without consuming too much caffeine. Be aware that there are some teas that should be avoided such as peppermint. Lemon balm, kava-kava, and ginseng. These teas either have medicinal properties or can be harmful to the baby as well as mother.

5. Almond milk

Dairy is often one of the most common causes for a fussy baby that is breastfed. While you may want to cut out whole milk from your diet, almond milk can be a great alternative. Almond milk can be found in most grocery stores and can be bought sweetened, unsweetened and flavored with vanilla or honey. It is also possible to make your own almond milk by blending some almonds with water and adding your own vanilla flavor or honey.

6. Fruit juices

While you don't want to consume too much fruit juice each day, it can be a great alternative to drinking soda while breastfeeding. Drink juice that is 100% fruit juice with no added sugar or simply make your own fruit juice. You might want to avoid or at least monitor your baby if you drink citrus juices like orange or lemonade as these can cause babies to be fussy.

7. Veggie juices

Drinking vegetable juice or blended vegetable juices are a great way to add vitamins and minerals to your daily diet. If looking in the store for a vegetable juice, be sure to check the label and avoid any that have a high sodium count. Like fruit juices, you can make your own vegetable juice with a juicer and even save the pulp to add into muffins mixes or broths to get the extra fiber.

8. Beer

It's not clear how much beer you should or should not consume if you are breastfeeding, but a little has been said to help increase milk supply. Just be cautious when consuming alcohol while breastfeeding. Drinking too much alcohol can lead to dehydration which will result in a lower supply.

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