The adjustments of becoming pregnant and starting a newish career/job has kept me away from this wonderful outlet of sharing all the good food, well-being and nutrition that inspires me to live a heathy life. Diving into the possibility of becoming pregnant was terrifying and exciting and after seeing how easily it can happen. I have some ideas of why it may have - as for some, I know it does not. I hope to provide a little insight I’ve learned along the way that you can apply to begin housing a little being.
As well, I’ve been busy in the kitchen coming up with specific nutrient-dense recipes whilst being in this prenatal phase (and preparing for the postnatal - that will be in another post!). Foods and beverages that have worked for me to maintain a healthy weight gain, but also supply the proper nutrients my growing babe needs before coming into this mad world!
Anyone who’s been pregnant knows how awkwardly uncomfortable this last stage is, 38+ weeks to be exact! Finding a comfortable position to even write this is challenging! But like my yoga teacher said this morning, it’s the perfect place for baby until it’s ready to make an appearance. So until then, I’m hanging in!
Here are a few of the practices and pointers I found to helped guide me through this amazing transition and time in both our lives…
- Detox The thing about detoxing is I think it can be taken to extremes, with crazy honey and lemon water only diets, fasting for days and those crazy kits you can buy (which I’ve done on numerous occasions). By detox, in this sense is in reference to what my natropath and other leading health professionals whom I follow taught me. There are many toxins in our environment that are out of our control, however the products and materials we use in our daily life are in our control.
- While my intention was to soley rid our home of these toxic substances for our greater health and disease prevention, this can be a practice for those who are looking to release excess chemicals and endocrine disruptors that can adversley effect your chances of concieving. Here are a couple examples… all cosmetics or products you use on your skin that absorb into your blood stream, (this is a great site to help with these things) non-stick pans or aluminum and anything in plastic. I’ve always been a #hippyatheart so for me, I had already been using shampoos, deoderants, soaps and cosmetics with out all the junk for years. It was the plastic I found tricky to get around, mason jars are now my best friend!
- Nutrition Now onto the good stuff, the real meat of being pregnant. Now that you’ve detoxified your home and powder room, move on up to your fridge and cupboards for an overhaul. As a Natural Therapuetic Chef, I’m more than ever aware of the issues with our food system. Being mindful is the first step to good nutrition, avoiding processed and packaged goods loaded with harmful preservatives and excess sugars and poor salts is a great start. Then the rest is just about eating local and seasonal, supporting your community butcher and going to the market for your produce. Sticking with nutrient-dense foods like leafy greens, colourful vegetables, high quality meats and healthy fats like avocados, nuts and seeds as well as coconut oil and grass-fed butter in moderation - of course organic whenever possible.
- Yoga/Exercise For me, this is a must. I NEED to have a physical outlet for multiple reasons. But mainly as a meditative, stress and detoxification process it provides me with such a relief. In the first half of my pregnancy I ran in place of my practice of Bikram yoga, which was very difficult but for the health and growth of the wee one, I waited for the clearance from my midwife. Once I was, it felt great to be back stretching and sweating the toxins from my organs and tissues. It’s super important especially for an expecting mama like myself to properly hydrate in and out of the yoga room so tonnes of honey and lemon water or coconut water do the trick. Offsetting this more intense yoga with a prenatal form was a nice balance and a must for preparing my body for birth and quicker recovery.
That’s about it, I’m sure there’s more I could include but to keep within my scope of practice as a Natural Chef, I will continue in my next post with a couple of the recipes I think were great in each trimester. And if I don’t pop before too soon, I’ll try to squeeze in some of the post-natal recipes I’ve prepared for my recovery - super time-savers and packed with all a new mama (and papa) are in need of. Otherwise, I’ll see you on the flipside!