Part I: Pre-natal NutritionAugust 2020
As my subscribers know, I welcomed my first baby five months ago (side note; you should totally subscribe just click here). Let me tell you it’s been a whirlwind. But more on that later. I thought I’d go through my pre-natal nutrition, post-natal and life now five months on.
Pre and post natal nutrition is not my speciality, but I thought you might be interested to know what I did. So here goes…
We eat a generally healthy diet, I include plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, grass fed meats, grains, seeds and nuts. So I didn’t alter our diet in anyway prior to commencing operation Baby Worth. However, this is the first place you should tweak if you’re nutrition is sub-standard ie; you eat take away more than you cook. I have not been on the oral contraceptive pill for over seven years, so I didn’t need to detox my body of any synthetic hormones. It also meant my period was regular, I don’t experience PMS symptoms or other period issues (check out my post here on periods).
I did however, increase my supplement use. As I don’t like seafood (yes, I know a nutritionist who recommends seafood but doesn’t actually eat it herself), I took a fish oil supplement every day. I also started taking a pre-natal multi and zinc.
I spoke to my doctor and had some blood tests to get my baseline health status. This included getting my iron checked, thyroid health, full bloods and liver function test and lipid profile. I did this so that when I go back for my post natal check up, I can have the same tests run again and see where I may need extra support.
The why of Pre-natal Supplementation
Here are my three supplements and why I took them:
Fish oil: omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA are essential for brain growth and development and development of the retinas during the third trimester. In pregnancy, many women reduce their fish intake, or like me, just don’t eat it.
Pre-natal multi: a good quality pre-natal multi is worth its weight in gold. I had lower iron than I would have liked, so I took a pre-natal that included iron and occasionally (read: when I remembered!) took an additional iron supplement to boost my stores. Your blood increases a whopping 50% in pregnancy, you need to draw on your iron and so for me this was needed.
Zinc: such a great little mineral. Zinc is known to help regulate and balance hormones. It nourishes ovary eggs and promotes ovulation. I mean come on, tick, tick and tick.
Do you need supplements for pre-natal nutrition?
In short, maybe. The best thing to do is seek out the support of a nutritionist that works in the area of fertility. They will guide you and create a specific plan for you. Fertility is an emotionally charged area, and as someone who often takes on the emotion of their clients (I try not too, but sometimes you just cant help it – I‘m just as much invested in you as you are in me) I can’t work in this area.
Pre-natal nutrition steps I recommend
– As mentioned above, speak to a nutritionist
– Review your own diet and assess whether you think it could be improved
– Get some bloods done to know your starting level of health
– Move your body regularly (however you like, don’t punish yourself at the gym if you hate it)
– Focus on reducing your stress or finding better coping mechanisms
– Learn your cycle and what a healthy cycle looks like
– And most importantly, have fun, don’t make it a chore… boom-chicka-wa-wow!
Until next time… x
Written by Jessica Worth, Nutritionist, Central Coast, Toukley
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