Poor diet, changing lifestyle impact lactation levels in mothers

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Stress, changing diet of women as well as changing lifestyle has reduced lactation in working women, said city-based doctors. As a part of ongoing World Breast Feeding week, private and government doctors are trying to create awareness about the importance of breastfeeding both for the child and the mother.

City-based paediatrician and national chairperson of Women Doctors’ Wing of Indian Medical Association, Mona Desai told DNA that in past few decades, Indian society has undergone tremendous change, which has increased stress of lactating mothers, more so in case of a working women. With the growth in nuclear families, the range of activities a woman has to carry out has increased, which is divided among family members in case of joint families. “A nuclear family has more disadvantages. In many cases both the husband and wife are working, causing stress among women. In about 40-50%  cases in working women, we find reduced lactation in mothers,” said Desai. Moreover, with constraint of time, couples are more eating out, which has affected the nutrition intake in women. “With Swiggy and Zomato now in vogue, the trend of home cooking is on a decline. But outside food does not provide women the nutrition she needs, whether she is lactating or not,” she said adding that while it is not desirable, doctors are forced to prescribe formula food to children less than six months of age.

Dr Nishchal Bhatt, President of Paediatricians Association of Gujarat agreed with the trend and said that such cases are on a rise necessitating awareness campaign on it. “A child should get only mother’s milk for first six months. Mother’s milk is filled with all the  nutrition needed by the child.

“Not even water should be given for first six months. More and more counselling of women is happening now,” said Bhatt. With the rise in trend in working mothers, there is growing acceptance of storing mother’s milk as it can be stored in a fridge for about 24 hours. He, however, said that early initiation of breastfeeding is still an issue as there are lots of misconceptions regarding Colostrum, or the first dose of milk immediately after the delivery. He also warned about giving the baby outside food in first six months.

Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation has also charted out a detailed program to encourage breastfeeding.


  • Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation has also charted out a detailed programme to encourage breastfeeding
  • Doctors say a child should get only mother’s milk for first six months. Mother’s milk contains all the nutrition required for the child


Author: Roky