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Whey Protein During Lactating / Nursing the baby : Should I or Should I not ?

Sonal gandotra
Sonal gandotra
This is one of the most frequently  & commonly asked question by the women who are wanting to follow quantified nutrition during breastfeeding .

Let us understand in simple terms what Whey is. It is a protein of milk besides casein. A liquid (usually yellowish green colour) that remains behind when milk is curdled and strained. It is a byproduct of the cheese making process. When one makes Paneer at home the water left behind is whey. Has several uses. You can use it in kneeding the  flour or in curries , soups or gravies rather than discarding that water. After being separated during cheese production, it goes through various processing steps to become what people generally recognize as whey protein — a powder that is added to shakes, meal replacements and protein bars.

So we have understood that Whey is a natural component from dairy foods like cheese and milk, which are  routinely consumed during pregnancy and lactation. Whey protein powder will be processed by your body like any other protein. Most of the confusion regarding the safety of whey relates to the added ingredients for enhancement of its taste in terms of flavours, sweeteners, and preservatives.  Hence It's important to read the ingredients list, as some products may have unhealthy additives like added sugars and the risk of contamination of banned substances or heavy metals during the manufacturing.

Motherhood & nursing the baby are extremely personalised, every women is different and each of us may have specific requirements or a need for special caution. When breastfeeding, though, nutrition becomes a predominant concern because you have to worry about nutrition for two. A healthy diet with an adequate amount of calories from varied sources promotes quality milk production and boosts your energy.
When nursing the baby, nutrition becomes predominant. As a mother you have to stay healthy for yourself. How well you eat will directly impact your health and that of your baby. Protein during lactation is a critical macronutrient for healthy development and growth of the baby. Adequate intake of protein can usually be obtained by consuming whole food protein sources like meat, fish, eggs, dairy products, tofu etc. While most women can usually get enough protein in their regular diet to support lactation, some may need a little extra help. Not all mothers are having enough support back home right after delivery. There can be some barriers like physical barriers, lack of time or possibly being unable to move around as easily just after a Caesarean. This means that achieving this vitally important intake can be pretty difficult for some. This is when protein supplements come into picture.

For example, an excellent way to use protein powder is  to use it in making smoothies, yoghurt or porridge.

While protein is essential to your diet while lactating, also ensure you get a variety of other foods to meet your daily nutritional needs. Whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, calcium-rich foods and healthy fats – particularly omega-3 fatty acids – should share the plate with your protein dishes.

Bottom line is yes, they are extremely convenient way your protein requirements during lactation, however prior to taking protein supplements, breastfeeding women should seek independent advice from their GP to be sure what protein powder is right for them.