Can I Drink Soy Milk While Breastfeeding?

While I was pregnant, I used to get frequent heartburn arising from acidity and indigestion. After I delivered a little boy, the problem continued, and I still used to get frequent heartburn, and my baby suffered from stomach pain. I used to discuss with my doctor often ‘Can I drink soy milk while breastfeeding?’ The doctor suggested me a particular diet and a list of do’s and did not’s.

Some effects of soy milk :

drink soy milk while breastfeeding

Soy milk derived from soya bean can solve many of your indigestion problems. In fact, soy milk contains phytoestrogen so it can raise your Estrogen hormone level, thereby promoting lactation in nursing moms. Moreover, there are some real effects of soy milk:

  • It reduces the risk of uterine and breast cancer.
  • It’s a low-calorie drink
  • It’s packed with protein, calcium, and vitamins, thereby giving you a nutritional boost.
  • It reduces bad cholesterol and promotes healthy cholesterol.
  • Helps in reducing menstrual problems and hot flashes.

While breastfeeding moms should prefer diet which is rich in iron, protein, and calcium to help the body absorb iron, vitamin C, and vitamin D required in high amount. Intake of a significant amount of soy milk or soy products can be harmful to female fertility and reproductive system.   So, it’s better to take in stipulated amount as per the doctor’s advice. The effects of soy milk can be determined before you drink.

Is soy milk good for you while breastfeeding?

It has found that soy milk can cause allergies in infants. Although it’s a fact that women who drink the fixed amount of soy milk in their pregnancy period, the babies born to them are lesser prone to allergy. So, those who drink soy milk on a regular basis do not have to worry about that. Apart from allergy, it has observed that the nursing mother gets an extra dosage of protein and that is an essential factor.

Allergic situations are not present in regular meals or cow milk. Soy milk has extra vitamin and calcium induced, so that gives the extra dosage of nutrition to the nursing mom. Considering all these facts, the most probable answer to the question, ‘is soy milk right for you while breastfeeding depends on the quantity intake. So, we can assume that soy milk if consumed in moderate quantity as recommended by your dietitian or doctor will be a good decision.

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Milk and soy allergy while breastfeeding

As we all know that breast milk is the purest form of natural milk for babies and does not have any adverse effect on the child, still it may sometimes be a reason to develop allergies. Note the color of the diaper while your baby excretes. If the color is greenish and not yellow, then consult the doctor for a test.

If your child’s stomach gets bloated often, be sure that your food habits are causing your baby’s problem. Cut on your milk consumption and even soft cheese. If possible, stay away from all types of cheddar, mozzarella or milk chocolates.

Again if the problem persists and the greenish excrete is still there, you must make up your mind that your habit of consumption of soy product might cause your baby’s harm. You have no other choice than cutting down your portions of soy consumption either in the form of milk or other soy products.

It’s not mandatory that milk and soy allergy while breastfeeding will occur on a regular basis. But, it might be an occasional one if you could see your baby spits milk or rubs his face while being fed.

Benefits of soy milk while breastfeeding

Nursing mothers, who are lactose intolerant, often shift to soymilk. It might increase their general protein intake and also reap the health benefits of consuming soy products. In fact, if a nursing mother depends only on natural produce for daily nutrition; her level might fall flat for various reasons.

Breast milk is the only source for babies to get their required dose of protein for the overall growth. Lactating moms who are on a restricted diet like vegetarian, vegan and all those who don’t have a taste for high protein food may depend on soymilk to compensate the demand of their children to meet the protein requirement.  The body cannot produce amino acid or the basic unit of protein from natural protein sources but require a high dose of protein like soy variety milk or other foods.

Soy milk also provides other variety of nutrients like calcium, iron, and fiber. The primary type of proteins essential for the body is lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine. All these are present in soy milk. So, you must have some specific amount of soy milk since you can have significant benefits of soy milk while breastfeeding.

Read more : Can I Eat Spaghetti Sauce While Breastfeeding?

Almond milk vs. Soy milk while breastfeeding

Drinking almond milk has some health benefits. Almond being rich in protein and dietary fiber gives your health an active twist. The health benefits of almond milk are:

  • If you wish to cut down your daily calorie intake, then take almond milk which is the best choice. It contains the moderate amount of fat, and it’s easier to digest.
  • The cholesterol content is lower compared to milk acquired from animals.
  • Drinking almond milk will give you an extra dose of vitamin E, vitamin D, vitamin A and also calcium. Nutrients like sodium, phosphorus, iron and dietary fibers are also present in it.

The right amount of calcium and phosphorous helps in strengthening bones of baby and the mother.

Soy milk contains the same benefits as almond milk. But, there are chances for the child to develop an allergy against soy milk.  Then, it is better to shift to almond milk, although soy milk gives you the extra dose of protein which almond milk cannot.

So, if the question arises which one should be preferred, almond milk vs. soy milk while breastfeeding, then soy milk stand with a better option, provided if your child is not allergic to it. Thus, if the question arises almond milk vs. soy milk while breastfeeding, then you can evaluate which one is better than the other.

Although there are some benefits of drinking soy milk over the ordinary one, there are some disadvantages of soy milk which could be a health hazard in certain cases. The ingredients present in soy milk are cane sugar, sea salt, carrageen an, natural flavor, calcium, carbonate, vitamin A, Riboflavin (B2), palmitate, Vitamin D  and Vitamin B12. The following are some of the reasons why soy milk has some disadvantages:

  • The presence of phytoestrogens in soy milk results in allergic reactions in the baby.
  • Bloated stomach and rubbing sensations on the face and hand.
  • Presence of phytic acid in soy reduces the absorption of minerals like calcium, magnesium, and zinc. Phytic acid contains mineral phosphorous in tightly bound snowflake like molecule.
  • Unfermented soy does not come under traditional food.  In some cases, it leads to tooth decay, infertility, and chronic disease.
  • Soy is genetically modified, which poses a grave threat to both human health and environment.
  • Soymilk contains emulsified seaweed that causes digestive distress and pain. It might cause heartburn with breastfeeding and pregnant mothers.
  • It contains synthetic vitamin A and Vitamin D2 which is not that beneficial to the body compared to natural sources present in cow milk.
  • Natural flavors are sometimes the anal secretions from a beaver; so it is recommended not to consume that.

Should you drink soy milk while breastfeeding your baby

Researchers reveal that most of the healthy breastfeeding moms maintain 1,800-2,200 calories per day. A nursing mother requires around 300-500 calories above the pregnant level of eating, and that amounts to 71 grams of protein per day. This extra amount of protein can induce in the body by having the extra protein that might come from either drinking soy milk or other dairy products.

If the nursing mother or the child is intolerant to lactose, then she has to switch to soymilk while breastfeeding. When the question arises in your mind should you drink soymilk while breastfeeding or not, then the answer is ‘yes’ as soy milk contains other nutritional benefits like calcium, iron and dietary fiber.

Read more :  Can I Drink Pomegranate Juice While Breastfeeding ?

What is the safe consumption level of soy milk per day?

Reading all the above-given information, you can have a clear understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of drinking soymilk. So its benefits are depending on the quantity intake per day.

1 cup of soymilk will contain 131 calories. Total fat is 6%, 4.3 grams, cholesterol 0%, sodium 5%, potassium 8%, carbohydrate 5%, dietary fiber 5% and protein 16%, calcium 6%, iron 8%, vitamin B6 8% and Magnesium 15%.

Typically a nursing mom can consume 1- 3 cups of soy milk per day. Although this is the normal range, we recommend you to consult with your dietitian or doctor to have a clear understanding of the consumption, especially if you are a lactating mother.

Conclusion:

Consumption of any edible food or drinks in the permitted level is always beneficial for a lactating mother. The rule applies to soy milk too. If you are still in double mind and ask, can I drink soy milk while breastfeeding, we suggest you consult with your doctor and get your issues sorted out.  Unless you or your baby develops any allergic symptoms, there is no harm in having sol milk in the permitted level during breast feeding.

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