I really love cooking for postpartum clients - generally I make light and meals. This way I’m not spending the entire postpartum visit in the kitchen and can still help with breastfeeding, newborn care, and anything else the new parents need. Postpartum nutrition is incredibly important, especially for the first several months. Your body goes through a huge transition after giving birth and nourishing it with healthy, nutritious, and soul-filling foods goes a long way in supporting your postpartum recovery.
Any breastfeeding mother will tell you, the constant hunger is REAL. Experts say that your body requires 400-500 extra calories per day to have adequate energy to make milk for your baby and sustain your own body's needs. It may seem odd to some that they experience more hunger while breastfeeding than they ever did during pregnancy, but it's quite common.
Having nutritious snacks is crucial for keeping the hunger at bay and providing your body with the necessary fuel to keep producing quality milk. We at Doulas of OC have put together 5 Easy & Nutritious snacks to have on hand while breastfeeding. Bonus, you can eat them all with one hand! We hope you enjoy!
We are often asked by our clients what they should eat and drink during labor, so we decided to provide you with our favorite round up and a free printable! Labor is (most often) a process covering the span of many hours, with your body constantly working towards the end goal of a healthy baby and mom. You will be walking, squatting, rocking and swaying as you move through your contractions. Your body temperature will increase as labor progresses and you will need nourishing food and restorative liquids to sustain you during early and active labor stages. When the body doesn't have proper nourishment, it can cause dehydration and ketosis, a metabolic state that makes your body utilize fat stores for energy when there aren't enough carbohydrates to pull from. Dehydration and Ketosis can lead to increased vomiting, nausea, headaches and sheer exhaustion. Not what you what during labor!
Am I Allowed to Eat During Labor?
The standards vary widely, so speak to your Doctor or Midwife about eating and drinking during labor and ask your hospital about their current policies. If you want to do more research, Rebecca Decker does a great analysis of the current studies available over at Evidence Based Birth. If you just want the delicious snack ideas, then we've got you covered!
What should I eat?
Nourishing Labor Snacks
- Broth / Miso Soup
- Yogurt - dairy or alternative
- Fruit - Bananas, Apples, Berries
- Protein and Granola Bars
- Energy Chews
- Salty Crackers
- String Cheese
- Toast, Bagel or English Muffin
- Peanut Butter Packets
- Honey or Agave Sticks
- Applesauce or Fruit Squeezers
- Natural Fruit Popsicles
- Scrambled or Boiled Egg
- Brown Rice or Plain Pasta
- Trail Mix
- Protein Muffins
What should I drink during Labor?
Restorative Labor Drinks
- Coconut Water
- Electrolyte Water
- Hot/Cold Water
- Hot/Cold Tea (Nettle & Raspberry Leaf)
- Ice Chips
- Electrolyte/Emergen-C Powder
- Natural Calm Powder
You're all set to keep yourself hydrated and nourished during the amazing and long race of labor. Don't Forget about that post birth meal! You will be absolutely ravenous for a hearty meal after you give birth. Write down some ideas for food delivery near your birth location (hello door dash!) and pack a frozen meal in case you have your baby in the middle of the night.
One of Chelsea and my favorite places to have work meetings (occasionally over cocktails) is Cafe Gratitude in Newport Beach. Their food is fresh and healthy and beyond delicious and they have some of the most refreshing libations out there.
I remember the first time I went to Cafe Gratitude. We were meeting Midwife, Allison Molinski, for happy hour and winding down after a long day. I looked over the menu and while there were so many enticing choices, one stood out amongst the rest... the butternut squash dip.
This is the stuff that dreams are made of. Rosemary infused butternut squash whipped into a frenzy and served on top fresh baguette slices. Oh my gosh you guys, it's almost orgasmic.