What’s the link between vitamin C and breastfeeding? Is vitamin C beneficial or harmful if you are breastfeeding? How will your consumption of vitamin C affect the baby you are breastfeeding? These are questions you probably would ask if you are a nursing mother. As a nursing mother, you most likely would think about how a food or supplement could affect the baby you are breastfeeding before you consume it. Vitamins are generally healthy is recommended amounts, and so is Vitamin C. Generally speaking, it is safe to take vitamin C when you are breastfeeding as long as you don’t take too much beyond the recommended daily intake.
You can find abundant amounts of vitamin C in a lot of veggies and fruits. You could also get vitamin C by taking supplements. There is no reason to fear whether or not your child can be harmed by the amounts of vitamin C that you are consuming. Usually, even if you take Vitamin C overly large doses, your infant will most likely not suffer any harm. You most likely will not suffer any harm either. However, you may experience some side effects that are unpleasant. More so, why waste money to load up your system with excess vitamin C that it will only dispose of?
Vitamin C and Breastfeeding
Vitamin C, also called ascorbic acid, is one of the water-soluble vitamins. You can find Vitamin C a lot of fruits and veggies. Everyone needs vitamin C because it is an important antioxidant. Its health benefits are actually very many.
When you have adequate vitamin C in your body, it helps to protect your cells and keeps them healthy. It also helps your digestive system to absorb iron the way it should.
Furthermore, it assists your body in the process of healing wounds and damaged tissues. Doctors also recommend vitamin C for the treatment of various ailments like infections, fatigue, and surprisingly, cancer.
If you are deficient in Vitamin C, you will have a condition called scurvy. One of the hallmark symptoms of scurvy is spontaneous bleeding from your skin and gums.
What happens when you consume excess amounts of vitamin C? Your kidneys are like the police officers that check the amount of vitamin C in your body. If they find any excess amounts, they simply would remove them from your body.
Despite all the benefits of vitamin C, your body cannot produce it by itself. This means you can only get an adequate supply of vitamin C either from your diet or from supplements.
As a breastfeeding mother, you should eat a balanced and healthy. If you do this, you would get adequate amounts of Vitamin C that both you and your breastfed baby need. Some common foods you can get vitamin C from include citrus fruits, kiwi, berries, leafy veggies, tomatoes, and peppers.
How does vitamin C affect your breastfeeding? It’s quite simple and straightforward. The more vitamin C you consume either from your diet or from supplements, the more vitamin C you will have in your breast milk.
In just about 30 minutes after consuming vitamin C, the level of vitamin C in your breast milk would increase. In fact, the supply of your breast milk may also increase and have a steady flow.
Benefits of Vitamin C during Breastfeeding
In general, vitamin C has a lot of health benefits to the bodies of both adults and children. Breastfeeding does not create an exception. Vitamin C is beneficial for both the nursing mother and the child that is being nursed. Here are a few of those benefits:
Vitamin C helps to increase milk supply
It takes just about 30 minutes after consuming vitamin C rich foods or taking vitamin C supplements to notice an increase in the supply of your breast milk. Meanwhile, you can promote a steady flow of breast milk by taking vitamin C regularly as well.
You may not experience an increase in your milk supply if your milk supply is already adequate. However, if you by any chance experience difficulties in milk production, ask your doctor if you could increase your Vitamin C intake or take supplements.
Vitamin C boosts the immune system
One common fear that most breastfeeding mothers have is becoming sick. This is because of the possibility of passing on the sickness to their nursing infants. However, if your intake of Vitamin C daily is adequate, your immune system would receive a boost.
This means that your body will receive more strength to get rid of any infection before they can take root in your body, talk less of being transferred to your child. That’s not all. As vitamin C is being passed to your child through breastfeeding, your child’s immune system is strengthened as well.
Vitamin C helps to strengthen bones and teeth
Nursing mothers often worry about teeth problems. This is understandable because teeth problems are common in nursing infants. Well, the good news is that you do not need to worry about teeth problems when you take adequate amounts of vitamin C.
You also do not have to worry about injured bones because vitamin C would strengthen the bones of your child. This benefit is further enhanced by taking other vitamins such as Vitamin D.
Risks of Vitamin C during Breastfeeding
If you exceed take more than the recommended amounts of vitamin C, your kidneys would simply get rid of them. However, you may experience a number of side effects that are uncomfortable.
These symptoms include, but are not limited to the following:
- Stomach cramps
In extreme cases, you stand the risk of developing more serious health complications like kidney stones. If you have been treated for kidney stones before, you should be careful with vitamin C. Don’t consume beyond 1,000mg per day.
You should speak with a pediatrician if you notice any negative symptoms of excessive vitamin C consumption in your baby.
In summary, vitamin C and breastfeeding are compatible. Vitamin C passes through your breast milk to your baby and has health benefits for both of you. However, you should try to stay within the limits of 120mg-2000mg per day except you have a history of kidney stones.