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Those first few days – or rather weeks – were an exhausted blur for me.
Getting out of the house was a major achievement at which I frequently failed!
And that was before all the curved balls motherhood pitches at us, whether it’s poor milk supply, colic, reflux or the baby blues …
They hit you so quick and then you’re back footed into desperate attempts – aided by Dr Google – to “fix” the problem.
Looking back, I now understand some simple lifestyle changes in late pregnancy and right after my daughter was born would have really helped. I thought I was being healthy but was missing the easy tricks.
It’s well known for example that mums’ diet can play a part in colic – if you’re breastfeeding – but fiddling around once the colic has appeared rarely helps. Increasingly panicked changes are actually stressful and guess what is bad for colic – yep, you guessed it, stressed mummy!
Avoiding colic associated foods right from the start however, really does help!
So this is the list of easy health tips for new mums – many of which you can adapt before baby’s born – that I really wish I had had at my finger tips when I first became a mum.
The tips are not a miracle cure all but if nothing else they will help you feel stronger and calmer.
Easy Health Tips for New Mums
- Sleep, sleep, sleep … whenever you can!
- Limit visits in first few weeks so can rest as much as possible
- Shower & dress first thing so can get fresh air & sunlight early
- Handover essential housework to partners, family and friends
- Walk outside everyday for at least 20 minutes as early as possible
- Eat protein & complex carbs for breakfast e.g. egg & wholemeal toast
- Eat a small healthy snack every few hours
- Eat oily fish … helps to fight depression
- Eat lots of low fat dairy … need calcium but full fat can cause colic
- Eat lean beef … high levels of protein, iron and B12 very useful
- Enjoy beans & pulses in moderation – useful fibre but bad for colic
- Drink plenty of fluid – have a jug / bottle of water on go at all times
- Enjoy lots of non-acidic fruit – acidic citrus fruit a cause of colic
- Eat non-gaseous leafy greens but avoid broccoli, cabbage & cauliflower
- Eat whole grain bread & cereal – has B vitamins good for mental health
- Take a multi-vitamin designed for new mums
- Stock up freezer with as many healthy home made meals as you can
- Drink a herbal tea for mums … they can help both before and after birth
- Practice deep breathing exercises – breathe in for 4 and out for 6 – reduces stress
- Walk and talk – meet other mums & combine fresh air & chat
- Keep off caffeine – even if not breastfeeding bad for stress
- Cut down chocolate – glucose rushes play havoc with new-mum hormones
- Moderate sugar – eat in e.g. fruit puddings where glucose impact less
- Moderate spices – garlic, onion & hot spices may contribute to colic
- Get someone else to do one feed – lets baby bond with others & you rest
- Go to the hairdressers – sometimes little things help so much!
- Don’t worry about randomly bursting into tears
- Don’t worry about being anxious about “ridiculous” things that could harm your baby
- Treat yourself! Do something that is just about you …
- Ask for help when you need it & never feel guilty about asking …
If you found these health tips for new mums helpful do check out our other Pregnancy & Baby posts… they are crammed full of practical tips from other mums.
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