Baby Guide: What Should Mother Eat When Baby Has Jaundice?

Due to the close relationship between a mother's diet and breastfeeding, have you ever wondered: What should mother eat when baby has jaundice? If yes, you've landed in the right place! This quick guide will answer your question and cover all the informative knowledge related to this matter.

Facts of Jaundice In Newborns

Before discovering the exact answer to the parental inquiry, what should mother eat when baby has jaundice, let's grab some scientific facts of infant jaundice.


The most recognizable symptom is the change of babies' skin color to slightly yellow. This sign is usually first seen in their heads and faces.

What Should Mother Eat When Baby Has Jaundice

Source: Flickr

The yellowing might be more noticeable in other areas, such as whites of eyes, palms of hands, and soles of feet.


The main reason for newborn jaundice is high levels of bilirubin in the blood. Bilirubin is released after the old red blood cells break down. In this process, the liver excretes this byproduct from our bodies.

Jaundice occurs when the breakdown of bilirubin cannot keep up with its production. In the very early stage, a newborn’s liver is not mature enough to effectively handle the breakdown of high numbers of red blood cells. 

Normally, this disorder appears within 2-3 days after birth and goes away without treatment by two weeks. Unless managed appropriately, it can last longer and even lead to severe complications. Hence, it is important to offer proper care for babies. 

On the other hand, breast milk is the best source for newborns to get nutrients. What mothers consume surely has a certain impact on their babies’ health. So, what should mother eat when baby has jaundice?

What Should Mother Eat When Baby Has Jaundice?


Water makes up over 70 percent of the human body. Nobody can deny its vital role for most of our major systems. 

Staying hydrated is the top requirement for breastfeeding mothers. To all mums, you should make a habit of drinking from 2 to 2.5 liters of water per day.

Plenty of water can facilitate the body’s purification and liver detoxification. In addition, it saves your milk from being contaminated with harmful substances. 

Whole Grains

Whole grains stand out from other kinds of grain since it’s higher in fiber and B vitamins. Fiber is beneficial in breaking food down, removing toxins, and reducing inflammation.

Research also demonstrates that a high intake of whole-grain foods can lower the risk of liver cancer by nearly 40 percent.

You can easily buy this favorite breakfast in your place. Some are oatmeal, brown rice, whole-wheat bread, and quinoa.

What Should Mother Eat When Baby Has Jaundice - Whole-wheat bread

Whole-wheat bread 

Fresh Vegetables And Fruits

Vegetables and fruits are other indispensable answers when it comes to the question, what should mother eat if baby has jaundice?

Not to mention their high fiber, vegetables are rich in vitamins and minerals. Enough nutrients from breast milk will enhance the natural detox power of a newborn’s liver.

A highlighted name is leafy green vegetables, such as broccoli, kale, and spinach.

They’re an ideal source of digestive enzymes. These substances are helpful for the digestive system and the body's absorption. Moreover, with high antioxidants, all liver problems caused by free radicals would be solved.

Some certain fruits we’d like to suggest are citrus fruits, mangoes, berries, and coconuts. They are perfect choices due to their taste and nutrition. So why don't you eat various fruits in moderation to take advantage of their benefits?

Lean Proteins

Protein is a source of energy that can be used to repair damaged body tissues. It also provides amino acids, an essential element to produce new cells in the liver. As a result, your newborn quickly recovers from jaundice.

Lean proteins are easily digestible. They can be found in chicken breast, lean ground beef, tofu, and seafood low in mercury. They can increase milk supply and lessen the workload of infants’ livers.

Above are our recommendations on the question: what should mother eat when baby has jaundice? Keep reading to learn which food against liver function mothers should avoid.

What Should Mother Avoid Eating When Baby Has Jaundice?

Alcoholic Beverages

Abstaining from alcoholic beverages is an optimal choice for babies’ jaundice recovery. Alcohol can be detected in breast milk after mothers consume it for 2 to 3 hours. Thus, it can elevate the risk of liver damage for infants.

Processed Foods

Processed foods are attractive. But it’s often too salty, spicy, and fatty with lots of saturated fats. They’re also known as empty-calorie foods, which are high in calories but low in vital nutrients.

What Should Mother Eat When Baby Has Jaundice - Processed Foods

Source: Unplash

Besides, their strong flavors can affect the taste of breast milk. It shortens the breastfeeding duration and makes your child lose appetite.

High Sugar Drinks

Sugary beverages, like soda, are the next favorites mothers should limit. Refined sugar in these drinks is hard to digest. So, it boosts the burden of the baby's liver.

Raw Fish or Undercooked Meat

Raw fish and undercooked meat might carry bacteria and parasites. These dangerous factors can be passed to your baby through breastfeeding. They can impair liver function and cause various adverse impacts to other parts of your newborn’s body.

What Are Other Home Remedies For Baby Jaundice?


A free source for preventing and treating jaundice is sunlight. Sunbathing your infant helps break down the bilirubin in the babies’ bloodstream, thus reducing their liver’s job.

To ensure your baby's safety, expose him to well-lit sunlight for only 10 minutes twice a day.

Remember not to place your newborn under direct sunlight to protect him from harmful UV rays.

Breastfeeding Management

Scientists encourage mothers to maintain a more frequent feeding schedule for their infants. 

Studies have shown that infants should have 8-12 feedings every 24 hours. When getting enough nutrients from milk, the baby can get the liver’s function to work efficiently.


We hope that you have already found the answer to the question, what should mother eat when baby has jaundice. Other related information is also discussed in this article to offer parents a comprehensive view of this matter.

Handling a new baby is sometimes an exhausting experience. However, we all agree that every effort is deserving. And on this magical journey, we are proud of always being your companion.

Thanks for reading!

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Donna S Huff
Donna S Huff
I am a data-cruncher and bon vivant, who loves cooking, eating, and all things food.