While water is usually my first choice of drink, it’s definitely not my favorite nor is it easy to drink the recommended 8 glasses a day. Before I got pregnant with Sofía, I got by drinking less than 2 cups of water most days, and I didn’t really drink other liquids (except for milk in my cereal). I have just always been that way – drinking less than what I should – because I forget about it.
Did you know you should drink even more water while breastfeeding than during pregnancy? Obviously, this is because your body relies on the liquids you consume to produce breast milk for your baby. It’s not always easy to drink more water when you have a baby around because there is so much going on! If you need some ideas to help you drink more while breastfeeding, read on!
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8 Ideas to Help You Drink More While Breastfeeding
If you already are drinking nearly 8 glasses of water each day, you really only need a few more while breastfeeding. But it can sometimes be difficult to get those extra ones in, so here are some ideas to help you out!
1. Drink a glass of water each time you sit down to nurse
I don’t know about your baby, but mine tends to drink for a while on both sides. If you get a glass of water ready before each breastfeeding session it should be pretty easy to drink it while your baby is nursing. There’s no need to down it all at once, but try to finish all of it before your baby is done.
2. Drink from a clear water bottle with the volume labeled on it
I am more motivated to drink water when I know how much I’ve already drank and how much more I need to drink. I love the big water bottles I got from the hospital each time I had my girls, but the straw does get gross after a while, even after washing it a lot. Lately I’ve been using a Camelback Chute* and it’s perfect for measuring my water intake.
I’ve tried using water bottles that aren’t labeled with the ounces, and I tend to forget to drink most of the time.
3. Keep the water next to you whether at home, at work, or in the car
I drink the most water when I’m driving because I have the water in the passenger seat or right next to me. When I arrive at my destination, I always have to go to the bathroom, though. 🙂
When I was pregnant with my first baby, I would keep my water bottle on my desk at work so I could just reach for it whenever I needed a drink. Now that I’m home most of the time it’s hard to keep my water next to me, but I keep it on the kitchen table so every time I walk through I notice it and drink some.
4. Track how much water you are drinking
I am motivated by lists and visual reminders, so if I use a water tracker (click here to download the one you see above), I can see how much more water I need to drink before the end of the day. If you end up using my water tracker, just print one copy out and put it in a clear sheet protector. You can write on it with a permanent marker, and remove what you’ve written at the end of the week with some rubbing alcohol or finger nail polish remover and a cotton ball.
Another way to track your water intake is with a water drinking app. I’ve never tried any of these apps, but they all seemed to have good reviews:
- Daily Water (free; for iPhones)
- Water Your Body (free; for Android)
- Drinking Water (free; for Android)
- Waterlogged (free; for iPhones)
- Water Minder ($0.99; for iPhones)
- Hydro Drink Water (free; for Android)
5. Set a timer
When I was in the hospital after Sofía was born, I saw a lactation consultant, and she said that drinking 5 ounces every hour should be sufficient. If you were to drink 5 ounces every hour from 7 am until 10 pm, that would bring your total water intake to 80 ounces which is 10 cups. Set a timer every hour and drink 5 ounces when it goes off, and you’ll get there no sweat.
6. Get support
Enlist your kids, spouse, friends, etc. to help you drink more water. When I need Sofía to drink more water, I often say to her, “Mommy needs water,” and then I drink some water. She will then follow suit and drink water as well. If mommy is doing it then it must be the cool thing to do.
Same goes for you as an adult. If your best friend texts you a few times a day to remind you, and it motivates you to drink more, by all means keep it up. Maybe you and your spouse both need to improve in your daily water intake. Find a way to help each other so you are both drinking more.
7. Play a water drinking game
I hadn’t even thought of playing games to increase water intake, but then I came across an article on WikiHow called How to Drink More Water Every Day. It gives the details for four different water games to play so you can drink more water. The games the article describes are Water Pong, Water Bank, filling out a Water Card for prizes, and doing a Charity Water Drive.
I like the idea, but I’m not sure it’s something I personally could do on a daily basis. If you need your kids to drink more water, this will probably work the best of them all.
8. Add all-natural flavors to your water
You can always freeze berries, grapes, or other fruits and add them to your water to make it a little tastier and fun to drink! Even just a simple lemon or lime slice could make it taste better and be healthier for you!
Drinking water is so important for you and your baby, so try your best to get enough water throughout each and every day.
Do you have any cool tricks to help you drink more water while breastfeeding?
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