Postnatal nutritional depletion is very much on the rise amongst women today and fairly common following pregnancy, breastfeeding and sleep deprivation.
This is why it is vital for every woman to be on top of their nutritional intake and to nourish their bodies during and after giving birth.
Your body is a power house that just created a tiny human who now also needs to be breastfed every other hour of the day – this demands lots of energy and nutrients! Not wonder the postnatal body needs lots of nourishment and healing during the 4th trimester and the months following.
I always recommend my clients getting their levels checked with your GP or health practitioner to detect any nutritional deficiencies so they can be corrected soon as possible.
Here are my top nutrients for a healthy postnatal recovery:
Omega 3 DHA – Increased demand during breastfeeding and supplementing is recommended for both mother and baby. I do recommend investing in a good quality fish oil, but eating fatty fish like wild caught salmon, mackerel and herring three times a week will also increase levels.
Magnesium – Great for stress support, balancing blood sugar levels, reducing muscle pain and supporting tiredness. Think lots of leafy greens, nuts, seeds, legumes and raw cacao.
Iron – Adequate levels can support tiredness, exhaustion and feelings of fatigue. Low iron levels amongst women are very common even before pregnancy so aim to eat good quality grass-fed red meat every week or consult about getting an iron supplement that works for your body.
Zinc – Adequate levels may support wound and tissue healing. Low levels are specifically associated with postpartum depression and symptoms like anxiety. Foods high in zinc are meats, shellfish, seeds, nuts and legumes.
Iodine – A common postpartum deficiency that may result in poor thyroid function which may alter a healthy metabolism. Because of our depleted soils, many of us do not get enough iodine through diet so try to eat foods like seaweed, kelp and other sea vegetables.
My job as a nutritionist is always to support your wellbeing throughout this stage and making sure you and your baby is on top of your daily nutritional requirements so you can function at your best!