KEY NUTRIENTS for POST-BABY HEALTH


A woman’s body experiences tremendous change during the pregnancy period, and continues even after baby’s arrival. Depending on your cultural practices, there is a long list of do’s and don’ts for new moms.

As an example, Chinese mothers observe 30 days of confinement while Malay and Indian moms observe up to 44 days. Each practice is done with the new mother’s well-being and recovery in mind.

Ultimately, every mother hopes to achieve speedy and better recovery. With a new baby on board, your body needs the right nutrition to keep up with your newborn’s active needs.

7 KEY NUTRIENTS to get active MOMS going:

B-COMPLEX

This 8 types of essential vitamins is important in lowering the risk of post-natal depression10 and it is good for:

• Normal red blood cell production.9
• Nervous system function.9
• BEnergy production.10

VITAMIN C

This water-soluble vitamin involve in new tissue formation and helps speed up wound recovery. It also:
• Plays a role in the cell repairing process.
• Wards off infections especially around the wound area.

OMEGA-3

Good for you, good for your baby! Omega-3 are called essential fatty acids as they are not synthesized by the body and is best obtained through supplementation. Omega-3:
• Aids in healthy development of your baby’s brain and vision.5
• Promotes good blood circulation.6,7
• Helps reduce inflammation in the body.8

CALCIUM

During pregnancy, your baby is taking your bone’s calcium to build theirs. Thus, adequate calcium intake is essential to maintain your bone strength for the future life and it:
• Ensures optimal operation of nerves and muscles.3
• Prevents muscle cramps.4

ALFAFA

Hailed as the ‘father of all foods’, alfalfa is a great natural milk booster that provides various benefits to the body and:
• Nourishment for a mother’s body, to elicit faster recovery.
• Contains fibre that helps in regulating bowel movements, post-pregnancy.

PROTEIN

Essential macronutrient that is mainly involve in the wound healing process.1,2
Protein:
• Provides long-lasting energy. • Prepares your body for production of breast milk.

MULTIVITAMINS

Multivitamins are the staples for every individual and this includes mothers undergoing confinement. Multivitamins:.
• Fill in nutritional gaps in our diet.
• Provide an energy boost.

References:
References: 1. Powanda MC, Moyer ED. Plasma proteins and wound healing. Surg Gynecol Obstet. 1981 Nov;153(5):749-55.
2. Williams JZ, Barbul A. Nutrition and wound healing. Surg Clin North Am. 2003 Jun;83(3):571-96.
3. Timothy J. B. Simons. Calcium and neuronal function. Neurosurgical Review. June 1988, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 119–129.
4. Alan R. Gaby, Nutritional Interventions for Muscle Cramps Nutritional Interventions for Muscle Cramps. Integrative Medicine. Vol. 6, No. 6. Dec 2007/Jan 2008.
5. Dunstan JA1, Simmer K, Dixon G, Prescott SL.Cognitive assessment of children at age 2(1/2) years after maternal fish oil supplementation in pregnancy: a randomized control trial Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2008 Jan;93(1):F45-50.
6. Balk EM, Lichtenstein AH, Chung M, Kupelnick B, Chew P, Lau J. Effects of omega-3 fatty acids on serum markers of cardiovascular disease risk: a systematic review. 2006 Nov;189(1):19-30.
7. 2. Jensen CD, et al. Plasma Lipids on Three Levels of Fish Oil Intake in Healthy Human Subjects. Nutr Rep Int, 1988. 38(1): p. 165-172.
8. Simopoulos AP. Omega-3 fatty acids in inflammation and autoimmune diseases. J Am Coll Nutr. 2002 Dec;21(6):495-505.
9. Barennes H, Simmala C, Odermatt P, et al. Postpartum traditions and nutrition practices among urban Lao women and their infants in Vientiane, Lao PDR. European journal of clinical nutrition. 2009;63(3):323-331. doi:10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602928.
10. C.J. Lammi-Keefe, S.C. Couch, E.H. Philipson. Nutrition and Health: Handbook of Nutrition and Pregnancy. Postpartum Depression and the Role of Nutritional FactorsHumana Press, Totowa, NJ.