5 Essential Nutrients for Postpartum Nourishment

Bringing new life into the world is a transformative journey, one that requires a mother’s body to undergo tremendous changes. The postpartum phase is a delicate season of recovery and replenishment. Just as pregnancy demands specific nutrients, postpartum calls for a unique set of nourishing elements. 5 essential nutrients stand out for their vital roles in supporting both the mother’s well-being and the development of the newborn: choline, iodine, zinc, iron, and folate.

Choline: Powering Cognitive Development

This essential nutrient plays a critical role in brain development and function, making it a vital component during the postpartum phase when the infant &
brain is rapidly growing. Choline supports memory, learning, and mood regulation, factors that greatly affect a new mother’s overall well-being.

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Found in eggs (especially egg yolks), salmon, cod, chicken, brussels sprouts, quinoa.

Iodine: Fuelling Thyroid Health

The thyroid gland’s health is paramount for postpartum recovery. Iodine, a trace element, is a key player in maintaining thyroid function and regulating
metabolism. Ensuring adequate iodine intake supports hormone balance, energy levels, and mental clarity.

Iodine is found in seaweed, cod, shrimp, tuna, salmon, dairy, eggs.

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Zinc: Strengthening Immunity and Healing

The immune system’s role in postpartum recovery cannot be overlooked. Zinc, an essential mineral, aids in bolstering the immune system and promoting
healing – both important aspects of the postpartum journey. As the body recovers from childbirth, zinc contributes to tissue repair, helping mothers regain strength and vitality.

Zinc is most abundantly found in oysters, beef, chicken, legumes, nuts, seeds, whole grains.

Iron: Combating Fatigue and Restoring Energy

Iron deficiency is a common concern during the postpartum period, and with good reason. Birth leads to blood loss, depleting iron stores and causing fatigue.
Restoring iron levels is essential for combating postpartum exhaustion and supporting energy levels.

Iron rich foods include red meat, chicken, turkey, fish, legumes, spinach, seeds.

Folate: Supporting Mood and Cellular Health

Folate, a B-vitamin, is renowned for its role in preventing neural tube defects during pregnancy. However, its importance doesn’t diminish after birth. Folate
continues to contribute to mood regulation and cellular health, which are key to maintaining mental well-being and physical vitality during the postpartum
phase.

Folate can be found in legumes, leafy greens, avocado, oranges, and grapefruit.

Nutrient dense postpartum recipe: Black sesame seed + greens frittata

Ingredients: 

  1. 2 tbsp olive oil or avocado oil
  2. 6 large eggs
  3. 2 sprigs of thyme, leaves removed
  4. 1 spring onion, sliced
  5. 1/2 cup lacinato kale, roughly chopped
  6. 1/2 cup spinach, roughly chopped
  7. 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  8. 1 tbsp lemon peel
  9. 2 tbsp black sesame seeds
  10. Sea salt to taste

Method

  • Preheat oven to 200 C
  • Prep all ingredients
  • Heat olive oil on med-high in a cast iron pan on the stovetop
  • Sauté onion for 3 minutes
  • Add garlic, thyme, & lemon peel, stirring for 1 minute
  • Add kale and spinach, saute for 1 minute
  • Whisk eggs and add to the pan, evening out the egg mixture across pan 
  • Sprinkle sesame seeds on top
  • Remove from heat and add to oven for 10 minutes
  • Remove from oven and let cool before slicing
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This article has been written by Sydney Bliss- a postpartum doula, mothers’ chef, and the founder of Milky Oat, an intentionally curated postpartum meal delivery service in California. 

www.milkyoat.com

https://www.instagram.com/milkyoatco/ / @milkyoatco

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Looking for more? We discuss all things postpartum in Why Prenatal Vitamins Are Important Postpartum.

We cover even more over on our journal.

Visit our shop to find out more about The Prenatal supplement to help support a healthy postpartum.

moode bottle
Visit our shop to find out more about The Prenatal supplement to help support a healthy pregnancy.

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