The First Step in Postnatal Care You Should Be Taking

If you’re like most moms, you probably took your prenatal vitamin religiously during your pregnancy (well, when it didn’t make you gag during the throes of first-trimester morning sickness!).

Then after delivery, you were discharged from the hospital with a brand-new baby, super-sore, with a barely recognizable body — and an appointment to see your OB in 6 weeks. So, was your body just magically supposed to return to “normal” by then?

Not exactly — while your uterus has generally contracted back to its pre-pregnancy size by the 6-week check-up, it can take several months to shed the baby weight, or feel up for exercise or intimacy. And if you’re breastfeeding, your body’s hard work continues as it works to support your baby!

So what if we told you there was something that would help your beaten-up, postpartum body? Something that would give you more energy? That would help with healing, mood and even milk supply?

Postpartum vitamins, friends. These powerful pills are just as important as your prenatals — and here’s why.

Vitamins Help Your Body Heal

Most new parents walk around in a groggy, exhausted daze. It’s hard to eat the healthiest when you’re caring for a newborn, and vitamins can fill any nutritional gaps your take-out-filled diet may be lacking!

Many postpartum women are told to continue taking prenatals “as long as they are nursing.” However, all postpartum women could benefit from taking a comprehensive vitamin such as a prenatal. In fact, prenatal vitamins help you get the right amount of key vitamins and minerals, especially folate and B vitamins that help prevent postpartum depression.

If you decide not to nurse, or are in the process of weaning, a vitamin is especially important. There are several hormonal changes that occur during and after weaning that can lead to depression and anxiety, including a dramatic drop in prolactin and oxytocin levels. The sudden decrease in these feel-good hormones could have an adverse effect on a postpartum mother’s emotions — and vitamins may help even things out.
Product Recommendation

Fairhaven Health specializes in products designed to safely and naturally promote fertility, pregnancy wellness, and breastfeeding success. The company combines traditional Western (allopathic) medicine with clinically-supported research in the herbal/homeopathic field to create supplements designed to nurture and support moms and dads in all stages of parenthood!

The PeaPod Prenatal is designed for trying-to-conceive, pregnant and nursing women. This prenatal vitamin supplies 100% or more of the Daily Value of the vitamins and minerals most essential for ensuring pregnancy wellness, including iron, vitamin C and folic acid. It also provides antioxidant support to cleanse the body of oxidizing free radicals, making it an especially great choice for postpartum women.

So whether you choose to nurse or not, give your postpartum body a little extra TLC!

Nursing Moms Need More

It’s recommended that breastfeeding moms consume an extra 300-500 calories a day from high-quality, nutrient-dense, healthy foods. However, the fact of the matter is, nursing women have unique nutritional needs that are hard to fulfill from diet alone — or even a prenatal vitamin.

For example, the typical nursing mom needs extra:

  • Iron: prevents anemia and keeps energy levels up.
  • Vitamin C: provides energy and helps the body absorb iron.
  • Calcium: builds strong bones to prevent osteoporosis later in life. Studies have shown that women often lose 3 to 5 percent of their bone mass during breastfeeding, as the growing baby’s increased need for calcium is drawn from the mother’s bones.
  • Vitamin D: helps muscles function properly, boosts energy levels, and helps your baby absorb calcium from mom’s breastmilk.

While it’s true that milk supply is not necessarily affected by mom’s diet, a mom’s energy levels, mood and overall sense of well-being will be compromised by a poor diet. What’s more, research has shown that being over-tired, over-stressed or overwhelmed can take a toll on a mother’s milk supply. Taking extra vitamins during this sensitive time will help new moms feel their best!

Product Recommendation

The Nursing Postnatal by Fairhaven Health is specifically designed to meet the unique needs of breastfeeding women. Most prenatal vitamins do not contain enough of the specific nutrients that lactating women need to ensure health of both mother and baby. The Nursing Postnatal provides comprehensive vitamin and mineral support, including 100% Daily Value of several vitamins and minerals, and extra amounts of key vitamins known to be especially important for lactating women, including Vitamin D and B vitamins.

Remember: if you’re breastfeeding, you need to take care of yourself in order to best care for your baby!

Certain Vitamins Boost Milk Supply

When you started breastfeeding, your mom or well-meaning friends probably gave you lots of interesting advice on “how to boost your milk supply:”

  • “Drink a dark beer!”
  • “Eat TONS of oatmeal!”
  • “Encapsulate your placenta!”

While these things may have a positive effect on milk supply (a polysaccharide in the barley used to make beer may stimulate prolactin; oats are a well-known milk supply booster, perhaps due to their iron content; and placenta encapsulation is thought to help with supply as the placenta contains a plethora of important vitamins), the research is, at best, mixed.

However, there are certain herbs that have been proven to help with milk supply, know as galactagogues. Many of these herbs are recommended by doctors, as they have been found to be safe for nursing moms to take. Well-known galactagogues include fenugreek, fennel, blessed thistle and alfalfa.

That’s a lot of supplements to add to your vitamin regime! What if there were a postnatal vitamin you could take which included a blend of herbs that were effective and safe for helping with your milk supply?

Product Recommendation

Fairhaven Health‘s Nursing Blend is an all-in-one capsule combining the vitamins postpartum moms need, with a blend of herbs known to boost milk production. Nursing Blend was scientifically-designed by doctors and nutritionists to specifically meet the nutritional needs of nursing mothers and their babies and to aid in milk production.

This comprehensive formula brings together essential vitamins and minerals to ensure proper nutrition, along with herbal ingredients to support breast milk production. It provides 100% Daily Value of most vitamins and minerals, and extra amounts of vitamins known to be especially important for lactating women, including Vitamin D and B vitamins. With just three capsules a day, nursing moms get everything they need to support both their health and their baby’s.

Remember that any galactagogue will be most effective in boosting milk supply when combined with increased breastfeeding frequency and milk removal. And as always, it’s best to run any prescription, supplement or vitamin you’re taking by your OB or Midwife.

So pregnant, postpartum and nursing mamas: take care of yourselves! Your health and well-being are an invaluable part of the equation here.

Looking for Un-Nursing Wear?

If you need to add some nursing clothing to your wardrobe, but don’t want to spend money on pieces you’ll only wear for a short period of time, then head on over to Melody Lane for the best in regular clothing that is versatile enough to wear before, during, and after breastfeeding! They offer trendy, classic, and comfortable clothing that is hand-picked for all the life stages women usually experience. With nothing over $100, always free shipping, and new styles featured every season, Melody Lane makes sure your “fashion meets life”.

Melody Lane | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram

For more information on what to expect after delivery, check out What To Expect From Your Post-Baby Body!

Sources: 1. American Pregnancy Association, Postnatal Vitamins While Breastfeeding | 2. Kelly Mom, What is a galactagogue? Do I need one? | 3. Kelly Mom, Sadness and depression during and after weaning | 4. Mayo Clinic, Breast-feeding nutrition: Tips for Moms | 5. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, Pregnancy, Breastfeeding, and Bone Health

Photo credits: Agnes Kindberg Photography | Sarah M. | Fairhaven Health


This post is meant for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace medical advice from your physician, doctor or health care professional. Please read our terms of use for more information.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Trackback from your site.

Sarah

Sarah is a yoga practicing, mostly vegan, coffee chugging, Jack White-loving, stay-at-home-mom to three kids 4 and under in Cincinnati, Ohio. In her free time, she does freelance work for Cincinnati Parent, Dayton Parent and Indy’s Child, and blogs about her adventures with three kids in the Queen City.

Leave a comment