Postpartum nutrition: Fight the "baby blues" with these tips
Did you know that you can fight the so-called "baby blues" with healthy food? Here are some helpful postpartum nutrition tips.
It’s totally normal to feel a little moody right after giving birth. With your body recovering from labor, your hormones going haywire, and your newborn demanding attention all throughout the day, who can blame you? Anyone would be cranky.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is probably the farthest thing on your mind right now, but it’s especially vital that you take care of your body during this period. Fight the so-called “baby blues” by eating healthy food.
Avoid processed food
First of all, if you haven’t been avoiding processed food, now’s the best time to start. Processed foods are not just bad for your physical health; studies have also found that diets rich in processed foods lead to higher rates of depressive illness, including postpartum depression.
Stay away from quick fixes
Caffeinated drinks, chocolates, and simple carbohydrates may energize you quickly, but when you come down from the rush you might feel even worse. Try adding a teaspoon of honey to some hot water instead.
Complex carbs and protein are your best friends
Unstable blood sugar levels can aggravate your depression and anxiety. Focus on small, regular meals high in complex carbs, essential fats, and protein, which will keep your blood sugar levels from plummeting.
Boost your serotonin levels with tryptophan
The chemical serotonin is your mood stabilizer. When your serotonin levels are low, it can cause mood swings and anxiety, so try to increase your serotonin levels. To produce serotonin, the body needs the amino acid tryptophan, which can be found in the following foods:
- high-quality eggs
- salmon or tuna
- turkey or chicken
Note: If you think you’re suffering from postpartum depression instead of baby blues, contact your doctor. Healthy foods help with mood management, but postpartum depression needs professional treatment. Look out for severe mood swings, excessive crying, severe anxiety, panic attacks, and thoughts of harming yourself or your baby.