Boosting Immunity While Breastfeeding: Vitamins and Their Safety

Originally Published on November 30, 2020 Postpartum Care | By Sara Lindberg

Marc Tran/Stocksy United

Staying healthy is critical for both you and your baby, especially during cold and flu season. Boosting immunity by eating nutritious food is a great place to start.

But sometimes (OK, all the time!), life gets hectic, and eating is something you do between nursing, work, and caring for other kids.

To fill the gaps, a lot of breastfeeding folks consider taking immune-boosting supplements in addition to their daily postnatal multivitamin.

But is that safe?

Here’s what you need to know about boosting immunity with supplements while pregnant.
What vitamins and nutrients do you need when breastfeeding?

Taking a multivitamin while breastfeeding is something your doctor will likely discuss with you during a prenatal visit or your 6-week checkup.

Since many people continue taking their prenatal vitamin while breastfeeding, most of the key nutrients needed during the postpartum period are already covered.

That said, there are some essential nutrients breastfeeding moms should make sure they are getting daily. According to Sherry Ross, MD, an OB-GYN in Santa Monica, California, if you’re breastfeeding, you should focus on the following essential nutrients:

  • calcium
  • folic acid
  • iodine
  • iron
  • vitamin A
  • vitamin B6
  • vitamin B12
  • vitamin C
  • vitamin D
  • DHA — docosahexaenoic acid, a type of omega-3 fat

Looking for the right postnatal vitamin?

Check out our recommendations for the best multivitamins for breastfeeding moms here. And rest assured knowing all the vitamins and supplements Healthline recommends are medically vetted.


To help boost immunity, check the label of your multivitamin for vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B complex, probiotics, and zinc.

Some immune-boosting supplements also contain echinacea and elderberry, but according to the National Library of Medicine’s Drug and Lactation Database, no data exists on the safety and efficacy of elderberryTrusted Source or echinaceaTrusted Source in nursing mothers or infants. | | | Next → |

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