Postpartum Peroid

It looks like I have been blogging exclusive for Srivalli's Blogging Marathon  for the past couple of months.With the preparation and arrival of New born at home, things are more in focus around the Lil Dude and hence all other things took a back seat.But then when it comes to this blogging marathon,I did not want to miss it at any cause and hence stole a few moments each day to gear up.This month for BM #13 , I have selected Postpartum diet as my theme. This seems apt now that I am being pampered with all the right and nutritive food and also I don't have to spend time in the kitchen churning out food for the blog. Mom makes these dishes and I happily put it up on the blog :)

Here is my first post- An introduction on the Postpartum period.Since it is essential to understand a little about postpartum period, I felt a small intro is essential before we go on to the actual theme of Postpartum diet....

The joys of welcoming a new born into the family is boundless.At the same time this period called the postpartum period is also a time of great stress and strain not only to the mother but also the other members of the family.

Postpartum is the period following the birth of the new born. This period is as crucial as the pregnancy itself. This period starts when the baby is born and continues till the mother has almost reached the pre-pregnancy weight. During this period the mother undergoes various changes - mentally-emotionally and physically.She is also trying to cope up with the new needs and demands of the new role of being a mother and trying to accustom herself to changes taking place within her body. This can cause an immense stress on her body and her mental status. Thus a good nutrition and ample rest is a must for the mother during the postpartum period.

Rest :

A new born baby in the house can change the routine of all the adults in the same household.While everyone is adjusting to the needs of the little one , the mother is also pampered and taken care of.

 These days, the mother is considered smart if she returns to normal life as soon as possible after delivery. Also since women are working, they are expected to return to their jobs. The rush of the modern days gives less time for the mother to heal as well as to bond with the new born.

After delivery the mother and the new born’s system are equally vulnerable. Though the mother may seem strong, she may be facing an inner turmoil that may lead to depression. Time has to be given for mom to rejuvenate and regain her normal status. Also time has to be given for the mother to settle into the new routine of taking care of the needs of the new born and also to bond with it. It is a life style that is new for both the mother and the infant.

Usually each culture has a certain time duration during which the mother rejuvenates. Ayurveda recommends 42 days. This is the time when the mother is given complete rest and is served with foods that are best suited for her condition and pampered by the family members.But it is rarely seen these days.

In the age of  nuclear families, this golden period is lost as the mother has to cope up with the demands of taking care of herself, the new born and the other members of the family. Help is rarely got and hence the mother is more stressed.

In olden days when joint family was the norm, the new mother is taken care of by the other women in the family. A rich treasure of knowledge in the aspects of taking care of the new born, do’s and dont’s  during the postpartum period is passed on the mother. Since there are always people around her, she was less likely to fall prey to postpartum depression. Thus the mother and the new born were healthy and happy.                            

Nutrition :

Along with a good rest, nutrition plays a very important role in bringing back the mother to the regular lifestyle.A good diet will ensure that the mother recovers from the stress of delivery and also has reserves to feed the baby and to save energy for the future.Exhaustion is a main complaint in the new mothers. A good diet will boost the energy levels of the mothers.Another common complaint is postpartum depression. This too can be fought with some super effective foods.

Though women want to return to the pre-pregnancy weight, it should be remembered that the weight loss does not happen all of a sudden and it should take a couple of months to come back to the original weight. Hence one should not follow a weight reduction diet etc.Extreme dieting or rapid loss of weight can be hazardous to the mothers health.

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables and fluids is ideal and balanced. Cutting down on oily foods and unwanted calories is essential.

Since the new mother breast feeds the baby,she will fell hungry often.Keeping some nutritious snacks / fruits handy is very essential.

Fluids too must be taken in ample quantities.They include water, fruit juices, soups, thin porridge, buttermilk,milk etc can be included along with the balanced diet.Limiting the consumption of caffeine is also recommended.Alcohol is to be avoided.Though fluids are necessary one need not freak out. Drink amply when thirsty and remaining hydrated is the key to maintaining a healthy fluid balance.

Similarly this is the period when you will be breast feeding the baby.All that you eat will be passing on to the baby just as it did when it was inside you.Earlier the nutrients passed on to the baby through the placenta now it will pass on through the breast milk. Both the nutrients and the harmful substances including chemicals, drugs etc will pass on to the baby. So it is essential to watch what you eat.

No matter how depressed or how elated or tired you feel, do not skip any meal. Skipping a meal is not going to make you feel better in any way.Instead you are going to feel more depressed and tired. Try to eat what will make you feel better.But that does not meal you can eat a pack of your favorite biscuit for breakfast and a plum cake for lunch.Choose the right food and have a nutritious snack in between.

In the next couple of post we shall see how a good diet helps in coping up with the needs and stress of postpartum period,the diet and need for breast feeding ,the diet for a healthy weight loss after delivery and of course a healthy way to exercise off those unwanted kilos....

Are you wondering if I am going to put up only 'boring' articles? Fret not dear friends,I will be intercepting articles with easy and simple postpartum recipes too.See you all tomorrow with a simple spice mix that is apt for this period....

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#13

Healthy Living...

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