Calm your colicky baby
Life Positive|October 2020
Calm your colicky baby
Naini Setalvad provides diet options for nursing mothers to prevent infantile colic in their babies
Naini Setalvad

One just cannot compare the absolute joy, light, and happiness a newborn baby brings to a household. Watching a tiny life grow and adapt to its surroundings is heart-warming for the parents as well as all the relatives who fuss over the child. This enchanting experience can be dampened when the baby begins to cry incessantly. All babies cry, but it becomes an area of concern when there is continuous wailing for hours. There can be many reasons that elicit this discomfort, but more often than not, the cause is colic.

Infantile colic can be defined by the ‘rule of three’: crying more than three hours a day, for more than three days a week, for more than three weeks a month. The cause of colic in infants is largely unknown, and the fact that infants eventually outgrow it within four to six months suggests slow neurodevelopment that eventually catches up with time, as mentioned by S Wade and T Kilgour in their clinical review on colic. Having said this, there is a strong correlation between the mother’s diet and the occurrence of colic. Here are certain foods a nursing mother should avoid if her child is suffering from colic:

Cruciferous vegetables: Often, lactating mothers are told to consume all types of green vegetables. I say avoid the greens, and by that I mean specifically the green cruciferous vegetables. Cabbage, lettuce, cauliflower, and broccoli can cause discomfort to the child as suggested by a study carried out by K Lust and J Brown. These contain compounds that are hard to breakdown and get transmitted into the mother’s milk and cause the formation of gas in the infant’s belly.

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October 2020