Guest post by nutrition-guru Anna Bohnengel
Mama, life is moving fast. You’ve got a sweet, soft bundle of baby squirming in your arms and it’s already time to start thinking about making another.
Eeeek! It’s all so exciting, but also kind of scary!
Take a deep breath, because you got this. You were made for this. And there is so much you can do to fortify your mama superpowers. The first of which, is eating well.
Growing another human, whether in your belly or on your breast, takes a lot out of you. The World Health Organization recommends waiting two years between pregnancies to rebuild your nutrient stores. Whether you have two years to wait or not, take this time in-between babies to indulge in nourishing yourself.
This is not a time for deprivation!
You can get your body back later. Right now, focus on treating yourself to the most nourishing, health-enhancing foods you can get your hands on. See just how good you can feel from the inside out.
Tip: Ignore the ‘pre’ in prenatal vitamins and take them before during and after pregnancy. If you know another babe is on the way, there’s no reason to stop taking them!
Here are three particularly nutrient dense foods to replenish your nutrient stores post-partum and make sure you’re set up to thrive the next time around:
This pretty pink fish is a rich source of omega-3 fatty-acids and vitamin D, nutrients that are in short supply in the typical American diet, yet they are essential to a healthy pregnancy. Omega-3s can help reduce inflammation in mom while boosting the baby brain development. Vitamin D enables calcium absorption for strong bones. Both nutrients help protect you from post-partum depression.
Recipe: Lemon-Dill Salmon Cakes
Eggs (with the yolk!)
Eggs are a nutrition powerhouse. They provide vitamin D, zinc, B-vitamins, protein, antioxidants, and too often overlooked, choline. Choline is important for cell formation and cognitive function. This nutrient is also needed in higher quantity during pregnancy and breastfeeding. To meet your choline needs, dish up three (yes, three) eggs a day.
Recipe: Mediterranean Egg Muffins
From greens to root bulb, beets are packed with nutrients mamas need. The greens have much needed calcium and folate (think spinal cord development in baby) and fiber (keeping mom regular). The deep purple beetroot provides iron to keep fatigue at bay.
Recipe: Beet-Avocado Smoothie
Anna Bohnengel is a registered dietitian and co-founder of Alavita Perinatal Nutrition. Trained at the National Institutes of Health, she has spent most of her career at Oregon Health & Science University.
She has years of experience helping women achieve their healthiest, happiest self with a fresh, simple and results-driven approach to eating good food. As a new mom herself, she is now dedicated to helping women feel confident and nourished as they venture into mamahood.