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lactation diet
Categories Nutrition during lactation

Healthy Lactation Diet For Mums

Expectant mothers start thinking of feeding the baby well before they deliver. With a vast majority of health care providers/ lactation consultants suggesting that breast feeding is the best option, to be and new mothers have multiple questions on lactation diet. These range from –

What should I eat to produce enough milk for my baby?
• What should I avoid in my diet to ensure that my baby is not colic?
• If I don’t lactate is it alright to give my baby bottle feed?

Well, if you are not lactating, it is alright to give you baby bottle feed. At Kanupriya, we have consulted with many new mothers who are not lactating sufficiently or at all on bottle feed.

Having said that, if you are lactating then it is good to know that breast milk, in any quantity, is wonderful for babies. Some studies suggest exclusive breast feeding for the first six months while some lactation consultants suggest that introducing food at three months maybe alright. Bottom line is that breast milk remains the best meal for the baby for at least the first three months.

What makes breast milk the first universal suggestion is that it contains all nutrients that a baby needs for its growth and development, from proteins to fats to calories and minerals. These nutrients pass from the mother to the child. So here are some sample food groups that help understand a new mother’s healthy lactation diet.
A thumb rule to keep in mind is that when breastfeeding, you need 400-500kcal extra per day. Now coming to the food groups –

1. Dairy Products :                                                                                                                      Foods such as milk, paneer, cheese, eggs etc. are rich in protein and a good source of calcium. These foods help form Caesin in breast milk, which aids digestion and absorption of other nutrients.

2. Green and Leafy Vegetables:                                                                                            Broccoli, Kale, Peas, Mustard Greens etc are all rich in their protein and mineral content. This helps boost nutritional value of the breastmilk and the fiber maintains the mother’s digestive system’s health.

3. Pulses and Legumes:                                                                                                           These have high levels of minerals such as iron, folate, phosphorous, zinc, and B vitamins. Rich in proteins and low in fat, this is a good inclusion to have a well-balanced diet for a new mother.

4. Seafood:                                                                                                                                    Rich in iodine and other minerals, seafood for those not allergic can be an interesting addition in the daily diet.

Salt, butter and ghee in the normal amounts must also be consumed to ensure the supply of fat and energy to the mother.

Just as when pregnant, when breastfeeding mothers should be careful with caffeine, alcohol and medication. Hydration through water and other healthy fluids is essential and do not try diets to lose weight.
At Kanupriya we help our mothers plan their lactation diet for the well being of their child and themselves.

pregnancy diet plan
Categories Pregnancy nutrition

Power Foods During Pregnancy

What a mother eats when she is carrying her child dictates the nutritional intake of the foetus and then continues through to the development of the infant. If the mother has medical issues, her medicines and her pregnancy diet plan need to be suitably augmented to ensure that no adverse impact is felt by the developing infant in the womb.

And it is because of this that the old adage is very true – “What a mother eats is who her child becomes.”

The first weeks of fetal development are critical, and this is a time when the pregnancy may not be known or confirmed. In a planned pregnancy the diet can be taken care of from the stage of planning itself. However, in other cases, a mother to be should choose a variety of healthy foods to provide nutrients for the growth and development of the child the minute she suspects she is pregnant.

So what nutrients should a mother focus on and where can she get them from? Here is a small peek. Please note that this pregnancy diet plan may need to be modified depending on the physical and medical needs of the expecting mother.

Power foods during pregnancy:

Folic acid: It is a B vitamin that is crucial in helping developing a healthy brain and spine in the baby and avoiding neural tube defects. Leafy green vegetables, fortified or enriched cereals, egg yolk, etc. are all excellent sources of Folic acid. Mothers – these are good for your own hair too!

Calcium: It is a mineral used to build bones of a baby. If the pregnant mother’s diet lacks calcium the mineral is drawn from the mother’s bones. The baby is protected but the mother suffers in the long run. Food sources: milk, yogurt, cheese, sardines or salmon with bones, some leafy greens (kale, pok choy),etc. are what you need to start eating ladies! You do not want bone related maladies later in life!

Iron: Pregnant women need double the amount of Iron. Iron is the main oxygen carrier in the blood which is also the way in which the baby gets its own oxygen supply. Iron deficiency during pregnancy or anemia, can cause fatigue and can increase the risk of infections. Food sources: meat, poultry, fish, dried beans and peas, etc. are all a regular part of Indian diet.

Protein: Protein helps in developing important organs in the baby, such as the brain and heart. These are formed in the womb and for that mothers need to ensure that their diet has adequate amounts of proteins. Food sources: meat, poultry, fish, eggs, nuts, etc. are all easy to access and include in the diet.

The pregnancy diet plan described in this article is high in nutrition and is sure to help keep you energetic through the day. However, you can seek advice from your gynecologist or lactation consultant, for better results.

child health
Categories Children Diet

Healthy Drinks For Children

As a dietitian for kids, very often mothers ask me what drink they can give their kids. Most mothers, I find, give fruit juices to their children. There are so many healthy options to choose from, but mothers are not aware of them. As a child dietitian, my recommendations are as follows:

1. Fruit Milkshakes – add half a banana or honey for sweetness instead of sugar.
2. Aam panna – High in vitamin C, protects against heat stroke. Add jaggery instead of sugar for sweetness.
3. Bael sharbat – high in vitamin A, C and potassium, it is excellent for good digestion and all digestive system                                            related disorders.
4. Lassi/chaach/buttermilk – one of the few drinks that are salty yet loved universally. Use kala namak (not rock salt) instead of table salt. Add fresh mint or coriander leaves for additional flavour. You can make it in south Indian style too by adding roasted mustard seeds and curry leaves.
5. Smoothies – again very healthy as it combines the goodness of yogurt and fruits. Add banana or honey for sweetness.
6. Nimbu pani – very refreshing yet healthy. High in vitamin C and excellent for acidity. Use jaggery for sweetness.
7. Coconut water – fresh coconut water is a storehouse of potassium. It can be used as ORS for toddlers.
8. Watermelon juice – it is a delicious low-calorie drink for kids and does not need any sweetener. The fruit is 92% water and again loaded with potassium and lycopene (antioxidant).

One of the best alternatives to water for school is infused water or flavoured water. Make fresh at home. Play with different flavour combinations. Throw away any left-over water when they come back from school.

Flavour suggestions:

  1. Lemon and mint
  2. Cucumber, mint and basil
  3. Mango and kiwi
  4. Orange                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As a rule of thumb, and as a child dietician, I recommend you to always give your kids water to carry to school instead of a drink. This is because they’re in school for 8 hours daily. If you give them a drink, there’s some sugar element always, natural or added. As the kids cannot possibly rinse their mouths every time after a drink, the oral bacteria will have a field day and cause cavities.
Categories Everything, Other nutrition blog

Dietary precautions to be taken during monsoon:

From Kanupriya’s Desk:

The monsoons have arrived in all their splendour. We all have got a respite from the blistering heat. Everything is green, fresh and beautiful. What better way to enjoy this weather than to indulge in our favourite foods, be it coffee with cookies, tea with a hot snack, etc.

But, this is also the weather when food and water borne illnesses like diarrhoea, typhoid, etc. are at their peak. It thus becomes very important to take certain precautions during this season when it comes to preparing, eating or storing foods.

Let’s take a look at some of the precautions:

  1. Food borne diseases and infections through water are very common in this season. So, make sure the water you are consuming is filtered and treated properly.  Drink only bottled water if outside.
  2. Take care when storing left over food. This is because, due to the high moisture content in the atmosphere, bacterial and fungal growth is very common during this season. Store any left over food in air tight containers and at low temperatures or in refrigerators.
  3. Avoid eating chaats, snacks, cut fruits and juices from roadside vendors. If you are eating out make sure the place you have chosen.
  4. Raw vegetables, meats and fruits must be washed carefully and thoroughly  before cooking or eating.
  5. Leafy vegetables like cabbage, spinach, etc. should ideally be washed in salt water before cooking to kill the germs.
  6. While traveling, it is best to eat whole fruits like peaches, pear, bananas and carry home cooked food during travels.
  7. Large quantity of fruits and vegetables should not be stored in the fridge as they tend to rot very soon.
  8. Always keep cooked  food covered and it must be consumed as soon as possible.
  9. keep raw and cooked food separately,  both when preparing and storing.
  10. Keep chopping blocks and worktops scrupulously clean.
  11. Meat should not be stored in the fridge above other foods. This is because if it drips, it can contaminate other foods, leading to food poisoning. It is best to store meats in air tight containers and in a separate shelf in the fridge.

Follow these guidelines to remain safe and healthy during the monsoons! Remember, prevention is better than cure.


Categories Other nutrition blog

Sugar tax

In Philadelphia, USA, sugartax was implemented in January 2017. A study was carried out recently (published April 12, Am J Prev Med) on the effects of the sugar tax on consumption of sugarydrinks. This is what they found:

Consumption of soda was 40% lower after the first 2 months of the tax implementation. The daily consumption of energydrinks was 64% lower, and the 30-day regular soda consumption frequency was 38% lower.

Philadelphians were also 58% more likely to drink bottled water every day.

There’s enough evidence to suggest that consumption of sugary drinks not only leads to weight gain, but also higher risk of diabetesheartdisease and toothdecay.

This study strengthens the need for implementation of a similar tax in all countries. UK has taken the initiative, let’s hope the rest will follow soon.


Categories Other nutrition blog

Water is the best drink

Upto 60% of the human body is made of water and daily water intake is essential to maintain the fluidbalance in our bodies. Many of us like to believe that teacoffee and areateddrinks can be counted towards the daily fluid requirement. Not quite and Pepsi Co seems to agree. A company based on selling processed snacks and drinks now wants to help consumers adopt healthierlife choices. To help people increase water intake they are looking to introduce flavoured water which uses no artificial flavouring.


Categories Other nutrition blog


A new health suggestion is the inclusion of microgreens. Microgreens are greens that are harvested before they have ripened fully.

The variety of these nutritional dynamos is vast. It starts at everyday Indian kitchen staples cabbage, beetroots, coriander, mint , carrots, raddish, mustard greens and extends to the more exotic argula, chives, kale, watercress and basil.

The nutrition powerhouse of microgreens comes from –
1. 40 times higher levels of vital nutrients
Studies have shown that microgreens have 40 times higher levels of vital nutrients than the same mature greens. Take for example cabbage which in the microgreen form has 40x Vit E and 6x Vit C. Our normal coriander is a great source of beta carotene, but the microgreen version has 3x of the nature’s betacarotene levels.

2. Packed with Antioxidants

#Microgreens have high levels polyphenols which contains antioxidant properties. These antioxidants keep the body fighting fit against freerdaicals that cause some of the most harmful chronic diseases.

With the above two it is obvious that microgreens will improve health and help prevent chronicdiseases.


Categories Children Diet, Nutrition Blogs

Workshop on child nutrition

Good morning everyone. I thought today I’ll tell you a little bit about my workshop tomorrow and what I will talk about.

There are 2 main areas in our kids’ lives currently for maximum concern:
1. The rising air pollution and newer strains of viral infections – our kids are falling sick repeatedly
2. Competition in school – we all want our kids to perform well, not just academically but also in extra curricular activities.

My talk tomorrow will focus on how the food, we as mothers put on the table can help our children; in improving their body’s natural defense mechanism to fight infections, and; in improving their performance in school.

I will also give you suggestions of how to incorporate these nutrients in everyday foods. There will be lunch box suggestions and tips, and much more.

You all must have heard the saying:

“You Are What You Eat”. I like to differ.

I say – “You Are What Your Body Absorbs.”

So, together lets give our children all the advantages we can to help them grow up to be healthy adults. The health and progress of our nation depends on our children and ultimately on us mothers!


Categories Children Diet, Nutrition Blogs

Childhood Obesity

It is not uncommon in Indian families to have nani and dadi love their “golu molu” grandchildren. Chubby cheeks and fleshy little legs get oodles of love while those with leaner cheeks and legs miss all the oohs and aahs. As a mother of two and a nutritionist and dietician, I advocate healthybabies.

Overweight babies weigh more than they should but that is different from obesity where babies have too much fat. It is the excess fat that later in life causes diabetes and cardiac problems. But more importantly, obesity could lead to childhood issues such as being bullied in school, not being able to participate in all activities and having an issue finding the right and desired attire. These then lead to poor selfesteemsadness and maybe even depression.

To ensure that our children have a happy childhood and a healthful life, as a family we need to bring in change. Starting with a healthy breakfast we as mothers need to ensure that the family’s intake of fresh produce increases. It is recommended to eat fruits and vegetables of 5 colours daily. Think orange, red, yellow, green and white.

Evenings should be outdoorsy. A walk together maybe or a walk for the parents while the children cycle or jungle gym. Swimming over the weekends or cricket or badminton ? We need to leave the television, the tablets and the mobiles to rest while we all get our daily dose of the outdoors.

A third of Indian children in the metros are overweight. Healthy childhood builds healthier families and a prosperous nation. If you want any more details or diet suggestions do not hesitate to contact me

Enquire Now!
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