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Protein powder okay for breastfeeding?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
(x-posted in Vegetarian and Vegan Living)

I did a quick search, and came up with nothing...

I drink a green smoothie every morning. Sometimes I add tofu, and I know that helps out the protein factor, but other times, I'd like to just dump a spoonful of something in there instead. Is protein powder okay while breastfeeding? Is there a particular TYPE of protein powder that would be better than another? Anything else I can put in a smoothie to up the protein factor?

I have been on a serious fruit and veggie kick lately, probably because the farmer's markets opened up and everything looks and tastes so yummy! I know I'm not getting nearly as much protein as I should.

I generally use a mix of fruit, for the green I use kale, collards, or spinach, and will sometimes add tofu and/or plain yogurt and some agave if I'm in the mood.

I have a 2 month old who is exclusively breastfed.

Thanks in advance for the help!
post #2 of 7
I'm not a nutrition expert, but I know that most cans of protein powder are either soy protein or whey protein. I would check to make sure there's not other things in the powder that you might not want. Bottom line, buy some from a reputable health food store I guess. They should be able to answer your questions.
post #3 of 7
I don't see why protein powder would be a problem- just make sure that whatever brand you buy doesn't have synthetic sweeteners or any other additives you want to avoid.

In general, protein powders aren't as healthy as whole foods that are naturally high in protein, as they're highly processed- the protein structure can change from the processing, as well as the fact that other nutrients naturally found with the protein (vitamins, minerals, etc) are pretty much stripped away.

However, there's nothing specific about protein powder that's incompatible with breastfeeding. Few of us eat "the ideal diet" all of the time, and protein powder added to a fruit smoothie is probably a lot healthier than not getting enough total protein. I do recomend adding some fat to the smoothie as well- for the EFAs and for general satiety.

Other high-protein smoothie ideas are nuts, milk, and raw eggs.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
I do usually put in a spoonful or two of flax seeds as well - forgot to mention that, so I am getting some Omega-3s. And the liquid in my smoothies is milk most of the time.

Thanks for the responses so far!
post #5 of 7
Generally speaking, I have always heard that Whey-protein-isolate powders are better for your system than Soy-protein-isolate (from health nuts/body builders). Soy-protein-isolate can do some rather.... uncomfortable things to your gut that soy in other forms does not.

Specific to breastfeeding.... I would have concerns about soy-protein-isolate, because soy is a somewhat common allergen, and from reading I've done, intact food proteins (soy, dairy, eggs, peanuts etc.) do show up in breastmilk..... hence why there are some mommas here on elimination diets.

If you drink milk/eat dairy and you LO doesn't seem to have problems, then the whey protein, although highly processed, is probably a safer bet for you to try.
post #6 of 7
I drink whey protein shakes regularly to make sure I'm getting enough protein for myself and for DS.

I'm don't do soy products.
post #7 of 7
i'm doing rice protein by rainbow light - that's another option
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