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Postpartum Nutrition

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Postpartum nutrition is a great investment in a new mother and her baby.  There are many plants and food that are especially nourishing and restorative.

This photos shows the cimicifuga plant, in the middle of Summer. It’s a plant that grows well in our New England climate, especially in damp areas. The leaves are wide and there are arching spires of clustered blooms about four feet high. In late Summer and early Autumn, it gives off a sweet, earthy aroma. I think that’s appropriate for this plant who’s roots and leaves are used for pregnancy and menopause: fundamental, earthy energy.

Other herbs that are commonly recommended for breastfeeding are fenugreek, thyme and Goats Rue. They are used to boost a low milk supply. Honestly, your best bet is frequent nursing and rest in the first two weeks.

Many cultures have warm soups and hot drinks as part of their postpartum tradition. Warm spices such as ginger, garlic, coriander, cinnamon are all good for your circulation and restoring your energy.

For postpartum, some particular foods to have include:
Orange vegetables such as sweet potatoes, yams, squash, carrots. All of these are roots and roots draw alot of energy from the Earth. That’s good for restoring your own energy after birth.

Whole grains such as oats and brown rice are full of b-vitamins and easy to digest. Oatmeal may help with your milk supply, it’s certainly a sustaining meal to start the day. Mochi (pounded brown rice) dumplings in miso soup is a traditional Japanese food given to mothers after birth.

Whole nutrition and specific herbs can influence your well being and recovery. Take good care of yourself and enjoy your meals.

Robin Snyder-Drummond, BA, IBCLC
Prenatal classes and home visits
617-435-0693

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