Perfect Meals For New Moms

Written by Katie Hintz-Zambrano
9:00 am
09/02/14

Photos Courtesy of Kim Genevieve

After you give birth, taking care of your newborn (versus yourself) often takes top priority, especially when the thought of cooking healthy meals seems like one task too many. But getting the needed nutrients into your postpartum bod needn’t be stressful. Just follow these six easy tips (and three recipes) from Erica Chidi, doula and founder of L.A.-based The Mama Circle.

Need more post-baby advice? Read our guide to Navigating The Postpartum Shift and our 20+ Things You Can Do To Help A New Mother article for extra help.

Pump Up The Fluids: “Make water, soups, fresh juices, nut milks, smoothies, and herbal tea the backbone of your diet during the first few weeks post-baby. Staying hydrated replenishes the fluids lost after birth and will bolster your milk supply if you’re breastfeeding.”

The Good Fats: “Whole-fat foods are excellent for producing energy that lasts. Ideally, try incorporating whole-fat organic dairy products into your diet. Excellent vegan-friendly options include avocados and coconut oil, as well. Fat is essential in the manufacture of hormones, which are in the process of acclimating after birth. Good fat in every meal goes a long, long way.”

Pack On The Protein: “Whether animal- or plant-based, try and have a substantial portion of protein in every meal. Increased protein is essential to help repair stressed tissues after delivery and to support the energy needs of breastfeeding.”

Focus On Fiber: “Nuts, lentils, quinoa, carrots (especially fresh carrot juice), and leafy greens like kale are excellent sources of fiber. During pregnancy and after birth, your intestinal muscle capacity is reduced and remains impacted during the first 2-3 months postpartum. Adding more fiber to your diet will help shift that sluggishness and keep things moving. Remember fiber needs fluids to work efficiently.”

Don’t Forget Iron: “Most women experience locia (postpartum bleeding) during the first four weeks after having their babe. It’s totally normal, but it can leave you feeling a little listless. Incorporating iron-rich foods can help combat that— think beets, sprouts, chicken liver, and black-strap molasses. Floradix, a German liquid supplement, can also help replenish iron stalls and can be taken on its own or added to a smoothie.”

Cull The Sugar: “Sugars are quickly broken down by the body, spiking your insulin levels and giving you a temporary rush. This spike is followed by a sudden slump, leaving the body exhausted, which isn’t the best when you’re keeping up with a new babe. If you need a sugar fix, consider using sugar substitutes like raw honey, coconut sugar, or using raw sugar moderately.”

Now, to the recipes! Click below.

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