Here is Blog No. 1 in our Postpartum Corvallis series! We'll bring you a series of twelve posts over the next three months, offering some great information about local resources as well as some in-depth profiles of some of the amazing birth professionals in our area.
So let's start at the beginning. Breakfast. Between feeding the baby, diaper changes, and settling the baby back to sleep, it can be a challenge to eat well during the first few weeks or month of baby's life. Especially if you are breastfeeding, eating well is extremely important. After a night of nursing, most moms feel intensely hungry and thirsty when they wake up. Did you know that nursing requires 600 extra calories beyond your normal dietary needs? This is no time to be dieting, or skimping on the nutrient density of your foods. But we all know that eating good food takes a bit of planning and preparation. And when you are famished and tired, it's so easy to grab a handful of candy because you know it will keep you going, at least for a few more minutes.
Here are five tips for getting the nutrition you need to stay healthy as you recover from birth.
1. One-handed is the way to go.
If you can eat it with one hand, you can eat while holding your baby. You'll be holding your baby a lot, so keeping this tip in mind can make it that much easier to find something good to eat. A handful of almonds, for instance, is a more healthful choice than a handful of M&Ms, and is just as easy to eat. Keep granola, dried fruit, and nuts within easy reach.
2. Let others cook for you.
Don't forget to add a Meal Train sign up to your baby shower activities, and request that people bring a variety of foods for you, not just casseroles. Another great idea is to ask for gift certificates to your favorite take-out restaurant and even gift cards to grocery stores that have nice hot food bars.
3. Two words: Breakfast Burrito.
You can make a huge batch of breakfast burritos before the baby comes and freeze them. Then, just open the freezer, pop one or two into the microwave and in under two minutes you'll have a great meal ready to eat with almost no clean up required.
Stock your freezer with your favorite frozen fruits, keep some greek yogurt in your fridge, and you are on your way to a great one-handed, protein-packed superfood breakfast with just a few minutes of preparation.
5. Stay hydrated.
Hydration is important in the postpartum period for all sorts of reasons. It helps prevent constipation, helps your body heal, and is essential for milk production. Most women feel very thirsty in the weeks after giving birth, especially when breastfeeding. Make sure your support people remember to get you a glass of water every time you sit down to nurse the baby. If you start feeling really tired, or get a headache, drink more water!
Need help with any of these tips? Proud Mama Support Services can help with that. That's what we're here for. We are experts at making delicious food packed with the nutrition that new moms really need. Plus, we don't leave the dirty dishes in the sink!
1. When she came over today, I had just gotten up after a long night with the baby. I was still in my pajamas, the dishes from dinner were still in the sink, and there was baby paraphernalia scattered all over the living room. I hadn't brushed my teeth yet, or eaten breakfast. She came in, but didn't judge the state of the house or me. After checking in with me about how the night had gone, she made some suggestions for how I could get more sleep while still meeting all of my baby's needs during the night. I hadn't thought of those things before--they seem so simple and obvious, but my sleep-deprived brain didn't think of them. She suggested things like having water and snacks by the bed so I don't have to go the kitchen when I'm thirsty or hungry in the middle of the night from nursing, and using the dimmest light possible when changing the baby's diaper so my sleep isn't further interrupted by turning the overhead lights on. So glad she's here!