It’s not unusual to feel down in those first few weeks after the arrival of a baby. You are recuperating physically from the strains of childbirth, dealing with baby blues, and adapting to life with your newborn. All this can make you feel exhausted, bad-tempered, and anxious.
While caring for a baby can be all-consuming, it’s vital to take care of yourself as well. Often, new moms have a hard time getting adequate rest and physical exercise in those first taxing months, and it’s also hard to take a proper meal. However, eating healthy foods on a regular basis can help improve your mood and energy levels to sustain you through those difficult days and nights.
Begin with a balanced diet and sip lots of water. Always create time for a quick snack or meal even if it means putting the baby down or handing her off to a confinement lady or your spouse for a few minutes.
Read on about the best foods for new moms.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Your diet should include omega 3 fatty acids which are primarily found in fish, nuts, and seeds. Besides enhancing brain function and protecting against heart disease, omega 3 fatty acids are also responsible for lowering the rates of postpartum blues among new moms. Thus, new mothers should stock up foods such as salmon, walnuts and flaxseed oil which are rich sources of omega 3 fatty acids.
The diet of a new mom should also include enough protein. Eating small quantities of protein during daytime helps maintain moderate blood sugar levels as well as stable moods. Furthermore, intake of dairy products, meat, and poultry accompanied by low-glycemic carbohydrates like whole grains, nuts, and beans can enhance the secretion of serotonin, which has a soothing effect on the mind. To add more protein in your diet, consider scrambled eggs for breakfast, yoghurt or cheese for a snack, and roast beef sandwich for lunch. Ideally, nursing moms should take more proteins compared to those moms who are not nursing.
Instead of eating three main meals in a day, try to consume five smaller meals to maintain your energy levels. It’s undoubtedly a better method of eating as it preserves your energy levels on a steady keel for the entire day, instead of seesawing between fullness and hunger. Sometimes, new moms, have a hard time eating a single meal in a day, let alone three. In this case, stock up your fridge with simple snacks or quick small foods rich in protein or complex carbohydrates. Try whole grain bread with peanut butter, cheese, and crackers, cereals, yoghurt, and fruit.
In the first couple of weeks following your delivery, dehydration will be a constant headache and will make you feel tired and sleepy. Therefore, you should hydrate yourself as much as possible. In fact, water intake is the easiest thing new moms can do to keep up their energy levels. We advise confinement mothers to consume red dates tea instead of water for their hydration due to the health properties of red dates tea. Carry a bottle of red dates teas in your diaper bag, in the stroller or car whenever you’re on the move.
Piece of fruit
Because new moms don’t have the time to prepare meals on their own unless they hire a confinement nanny to cook on their behalf, a piece of fruit may be the best bet when she needs something quick to eat. Fruit energizes you and does not later result in a crash as is the case with junk food packed with refined sugar. Moreover, fruits like peaches, oranges, pears, and apples are rich in fibre and require no prep work.
While a supplement should not replace a healthy diet consisting of veggies and fruits, it may be difficult to access all nutrients during the first few weeks after the arrival of a newborn. Therefore, go on with the intake of a prenatal vitamin for a few months after delivery. Prenatal vitamins feature more iron than multivitamins, which is vital because new moms have their iron stores used up after child delivery.
It won’t hurt to include the foods mentioned above in your postpartum nutrition list. After all, not only are they delicious, they will also lower your baby blues.