Fasting while breastfeeding or being pregnant - Is it safe?

October 1, 2021


Fasting is a natural state of a person during which the body survives due to internal nutrition and internal biochemical transformations in the body. It’s a process in which you eat very little or do not eat at all.

Recently, the so-called intermittent fasting (IF) method has become insanely popular. And while there are numerous websites and info sources about IF itself, it seems that our soon-to-be-mommies are being forgotten.

We’ll cover some pros and cons of intermittent fasting and pregnancy/breastfeeding. More importantly, we’ll clarify whether it’s safe or not.

During the last ten years, there has been an increasing percentage of obese pregnant and lactating women, as well as the entire world population. It is unhealthy to gain too much weight during both pregnancy and breastfeeding (increased risk of gestational diabetes, hypertension, birth trauma), but keep in mind, that gaining too little weight is just as unhealthy as gaining too much. Sudden weight loss is always a great stress for the body.

Pregnancy & Intermittent Fasting

If you’re planning for the future baby, weight adjustment is most recommended before conception. Radical changes in eating habits after pregnancy are not recommended. In order not to gain too much weight during pregnancy, the most important thing to remember is not to eat for two, 200-500 extra calories in the second and third trimester of pregnancy (the first trimester the body does not need extra calories). It is important to get enough protein, eat less fast-absorbing carbohydrates.

Breastfeeding & Intermittent fasting

If you’re still keen on going through Intermittent Fasting, the recommended method would be 12:12. Dinner should be eaten 3 hours before sleep-time; give 8 hours for sleep; breakfast should be eaten at least one hour after waking-up = 12 hours of fast. This method applies to both pregnancy and breastfeeding.

To lose extra pounds after childbirth - it will be easier for breastfeeding because it is a process that requires a lot of energy. It is important to remember that the slower you lose weight, the less likely it is to come back, and the less stress your body has.

Breastfeeding women need an additional 330 to 600 calories a day to support milk production. Eating enough of the right foods makes sure that your health is maintained and that your milk contains what it needs for your baby to grow.

Bottom Line

During both pregnancy and breastfeeding, intermittent weight loss results in a reduction in the amount of time the body needs to receive a certain amount of calories. At this point, it is essential to emphasize that pregnancy and lactation are one of the most cherished periods when it is important to consider your diet and nutrition.

No drastic restrictions on either macronutrients or mealtimes are recommended during this period. However, a balanced diet, proper rest, sleep regime, and lots of fluid consumption are very important.


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