Pregnancy Nutrition: Healthy Eating for You and Your Baby

preg nutrition

I am thrilled to have a guest blogger today, the super-talented Melissa Schollaert of Real Nutritious Living. When she and I talked about doing a little blog trade, I asked her if she could fill me in on holistic nutrition for pregnancy. As soon as I got her post, I wondered why I didn’t ask earlier! Read on for Melissa’s great thoughts on keeping you and baby nourished through all three trimesters:

When you are pregnant, the food you eat matters more than ever. In each trimester your baby continually develops and it’s important to use specific and smart nutrition to ensure your healthiest possible pregnancy. Below are a few of my favorite go to tips to help you accomplish just that.

First Trimester: Your baby’s nervous system is forming in the first trimester and if you are not taking in enough calcium, your body will leach it from your bones in order to give it to your baby. It’s important to avoid that at all cost!

  • Salt – Drink mineralized water; eat sea vegetables (kelp and dulce), Himalayan and Celtic sea salt daily.
  • Calcium – Leafy greens and seeds, especially sesame seeds. It’s important to note that caution should be exercised with eating nuts. They should not be consumed daily as research shows this leads to a 50 percent increase in childhood asthma.
  • Folic acid – 800mcgs in your prenatal vitamin and in asparagus, liver, lentils, broccoli and citrus.
  • Protein – 80 grams/day.  Some research shows lower risk of pre-eclampsia and other complications with adequate protein, and some women report less morning sickness when they consume this much protein.

SECOND TRIMESTER: Your baby’s skin and bones are forming in the second trimester, and requiring much more magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin C and collagen than ever.

  • Magnesium – Eat foods high in magnesium like buckwheat, millet, seeds, and everyone’s favorite, raw chocolate. If you are getting muscle cramps, foot cramps, and restless legs at night or headaches, then we suggest supplementing with high quality magnesium oil. I recommend not ingesting it; but doing a 20-minute foot soak at night with 2oz magnesium oil to 64 ounces hot water.
  • Vitamin A – Shelf your current fish oil and switch to Green Pastures High Vitamin A Butter Oil.
  • Vitamin C – Add lemon to your morning water and a food based C, like Premier Research Labs and eat C rich foods like bell peppers and berries.
  • Collagen – My favorite food source of collagen is drinking 2 cups of bone broth daily. It will assist in collagen production. Here are instructions on how to make bone broth.

THIRD TRIMESTER: Baby’s brain is growing quickly in the third trimester, and taste buds are continuing to develop. This is the phase where baby will develop tastes for the foods you eat. The lungs are developing and baby is beginning to utilize their organs on their own as well as eliminate waste.

Foods that support lung function include lotus root and all antioxidants like turmeric, acai, cloves, apples and red, yellow and orange bell peppers.

The other food focus should be on pastured animal meats, high quality egg yolks, grass fed beef and wild fatty fish. This is the phase to add back high quality fish oil. We believe the best for baby and mama is fermented cod liver and butter oil (Green Pastures makes a great one.)

AVOID:

  • Trans fatty acids (e.g., hydrogenated oils)
  • Junk foods including commercial fried foods
  • Sugar and sweeteners
  • White flour
  • Caffeine – including soft drinks and coffee
  • Soy
  • Fluoridated or chlorinated water

Melissa Schollaert is a Holistic Health & Nutrition Counselor and founder of Real Nutritious Living. She’s been an on-camera expert for ABC, NBC, and GoodDayLive, with her writing published on a number of healthy living and nutrition websites. Melissa also teaches cooking classes and workshops at Whole Foods and various other retail outlets. She’s an avid yogi, always improving surfer, and a firm believer in faith, love, and the healing power of green juice. She’s got a heart for helping others achieve their health goals to attain their healthiest, happiest life.

Visit her blog: www.RNLblog.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/realnutritiousliving

Twitter: @realnutritious

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Why You Need a Spring Cleaning and How to Do It…

I’d like to introduce you to the dynamic Melissa of Real Nutrition Living. She and I thought it would be fun to trade posts this week. I’ve got a delicious Indian Spiced Soup waiting for you over there, and she’s got some easy detox tips for us. Without further adieu, here’s Melissa!

mayflowers

Image Credit: the lovely Sara Beth Cobb of Nimblee Designs.

Spring has finally arrived, a time for showers, flowers, sunshine, fun and cleaning! What, Cleaning? Well, you know the drill. It’s time to clean out closets and break up the dust.  While you’re in that cleaning mode, let’s not forget the most important thing to take care of, YOU! Just as April showers bring May flowers, you need a shower too. No, not literally- well maybe, but what I mean is you may need to take a little time to take care of yourself so you come out bright, beautiful and energetic, just like those May flowers.

Unfortunately, we’re living in a toxic world, my friends. Our food supply, beauty, and cleaning products are full of chemicals, eighty-percent of our air tests positive for metals, we’re stressed and pressed for time, and the list goes on. Often, these toxins can take up residence in the fat cells, muscles and other tissues and organs in our system.  We know these toxins can overload our immune system, causing fatigue, inflammation, weight gain, acne, mental fog and the list goes on.

This is most definitely not a helpless situation. There is much we can do to cleanse our systems and stay bright as those May flowers.  Here’s a practical list:

  1. Drink lemon water first thing in the morning to wake up the liver and digestive system. It helps to flush out toxins, as it acts as a diuretic. It will help balance pH and alkalize the system as well as clear up your skin and provide relief against inflammation. Sip throughout the day for full benefits.
  2. Make at least half of your diet raw or uncooked, and almost all organic. Additionally, make sure the majority of these foods are fruits and veggies. Juicing, salads, and green smoothies are a great way to clean up the system. Remember to keep a 3 vegetable: 1 fruit ratio!
  3. Drink dandelion root tea to cleanse the liver. The liver is the filter of the body and just like your vacuum filter; it must be cleaned out from time to time. Eating plenty of greens also helps cleanse the liver. We also know the bile of a clean liver will flow properly aiding in healthy digestion and elimination. When all of our elimination channels are open, we rid of toxins more easily and keep healthy and energetic.
  4. Have fermented foods daily (sauerkraut, komboucha, homemade kefir or yogurt, and cultured veggies will all do just fine). It will help promote good bacteria in our gut. We now know gut flora (bacteria) is actually linked to not only our immune system, but our heart health as well!!
  5. Sweat every day! This simple step is often over looked, but we eliminate a lot of toxins through the skin and when our pores are all opened up, it will assist this process. If you’re not up to moving yourself, get in a hot sauna or take a hot bath.
  6. Do an electronic detox. While cleaning up the body, it’s a good idea take some extra quiet time for spirituality, meditation, and/or extra rest. Leave the phone and computer off and turn off the bedside clock, even just for a few hours. Instead, take a nap, a bath, a walk outside with Fido or go have a raw food picnic in the park with your sweetie. Anything that nourishes you and fills you up. The Law of Physics says energy is neither created nor destroyed (and who can argue with physics??) So while you rid of excess negative energy (toxins), refill the tank with positive things to leave you refreshed and as beautiful, vibrant and energetic as those May flowers.

Lastly, if you’re feeling pretty toxic and require a deeper cleanse, please seek the expertise of a Holistic Health Practitioner to assist you. A professional will be able to assist you through your cleanse to be sure you get optimal results, as well as help guide you through any side effects or symptoms. Because we are all bio individual, a health care professional will also be able to make the best recommendations for you with regard to your health and lifestyle.

Melissa Schollaert is a Holistic Health & Nutrition Counselor and founder of Real Nutritious Living. She’s been an on-camera expert for ABC, NBC, and GoodDayLive, with her writing published on a number of healthy living and nutrition websites. She also teaches cooking classes and workshops at Whole Foods and various other retail outlets.  She’s an avid yogi, always improving surfer, and a firm believer in faith, love, and the healing power of green juice. She’s got a heart for helping others achieve their health goals to attain their healthiest happiest life.  Check out her website, Follow her blog, “Like” her on FaceBook , and enjoy tips and tweeting here.