Herbs and Nutrition, during childbearing years

CAM00365

Eat for You and for Your Baby

Your baby is nourished by    your body as the plant obtains nourishment from the soil. A healthy    baby is the result of a healthy mother. It is good to know which of    the foods that we take contribute to a healthy baby. Most herbs listed here (except for the red raspberry) should be taken during the    last trimester and only after consultation first with your midwife or doctor.

Carbohydrates Vitamin A Vitamin B1 Vitamin B5 Vitamin D Choline Herbs to stimulate labor
Protein Calcium Vitamin B2 Vitamin B12 Vitamin E Herbs for Cleaning Herbs to stop hemorrhage
Fats Iron Vitamin B3 Vitamin C Biotin Herbs for easing labor pains Herbs for Preventing Pre-eclampsia
Vitamins Iodine Manganese Selenium General Toner Herbs Herbs to expel placenta
Minerals Magnesium Potassium Zinc Herbal Resource List Herbs to relax

Carbohydrates

Each gram of    carbohydrates provides the body with four calories. Most foods    containing carbohydrates have other essential nutrients such as honey    and blackstrap molasses which also contain iron and B vitamins.    Grains, fruits and vegetables contain carbohydrates which provide    fuel and energy for the body. Pregnant mothers need about 2,200    calories per day while nursing mothers need these and an additional    of about 800 calories per day.

Proteins

Many a pregnancy induced    hypertension could be avoided by taking an adequate amount of    protein. About 90 grams of protein is needed by a pregnant mother for    the growth and maintenance of body tissues of the baby and the    mother. Complete protein foods are found in meat, fish, eggs, milk    and cheese while incomplete protein foods are found in legumes,    grains, seeds and nuts. Some sources of protein include: meat,    poultry, fish, eggs, milk, nuts, beans, peas. Some combinations of    proteins providing the complete protein that the body needs are:

rice and legumes rice and legumes and wheat wheat, sesame and soybean
corn and legumes  rice and milk or wheat peanuts and milk
wheat and legumes wheat and cheese wheat and milk

Fats

Your fat intake should be    about 35% of your total calories. Each gram of fat provides the body    with nine calories. Fat is important in maintaining body heat    especially in cold climates. It aids in the absorption and    utilization of carotene, the vegetable form of Vitamin A.


Vitamins

Vitamin    A is essential for good vision. It helps reduce susceptibility to    infection. It is essential for healthy skin, good blood, strong bones    and teeth, kidneys, bladder, lungs, and membranes. Natural Sources:    Fish liver oils, sheep and beef liver, carrots, yams, dairy products,    liver, dark green and yellow leafy vegetables.

Beta Carotene provides    the body with a safe source of Vitamin A. It works with other natural    protectors to defend your cells from harmful free radical damage.    Natural Sources: Dark green leafy vegetables, yellow and orange    vegetables and fruits.

Vitamin    B-1    (Thiamine) aids in digestion. It is necessary for metabolism of sugar    and starch to provide energy. It maintains a healthy nervous system.    Alcohol can cause deficiencies of this vitamin and all the B-complex    vitamins. Natural Sources: Brewer’s Yeast, wheat germ, liver,    whole-grain cereals, fish and poultry, egg yolks, nuts, legumes,    brown rice, and blackstrap molasses.

Vitamin    B-2 (Riboflavin)    helps the body obtain energy from protein, carbohydrates and fats.    It helps maintain good vision and healthy skin. Natural Sources:    brewer’s yeast, alfalfa, almonds, liver and other organ meats, leafy    vegetables, whole-grain breads and milk.

Vitamin    B-3    (Niacin) helps the body utilize protein, fats and carbohydrates. It    is necessary for healthy nervous system and digestive system. Natural    Sources: lean meats, poultry, fish, peanuts, milk and milk products,    and rice bran.

Vitamin    B-5 (Panthothenic    Acid) helps release energy from protein, carbohydrates and fats. It    is needed to support a variety of body functions, including the    maintenance of a healthy digestive system. Sources: royal jelly,    brewer’s yeast, brown rice, organ meats, salmon, egg yolks, legumes,    wheat germ.

Vitamin    B-6 (Pyridoxine)    is essential for the body’s utilization of protein. It is    needed for the production of red blood cells, nerve tissue and    antibodies. Women taking oral contraceptives have lower levels of    Vitamin B-6. Drinking alcohol also lowers the level of B-6 in the    body. Natural Sources: brewer’s yeast, meats, whole grains/wheat,    bananas, green leafy vegetables, liver, brown rice, soybeans, rye,    and lentils.

Vitamin    B-12    (Cyanocobalamin) is necessary for the normal development of red blood    cells, and the functioning of cells, particularly in the bone marrow,    nervous system and intestines. Natural Sources: meat, sardines,    mackerel, dairy products and fermented soy products.

Biotin    is important in the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates and proteins.    Natural Sources: liver, brewer’s yeast, eggs, sardines, legumes,    brown rice and whole-grain cereals.

Vitamin    C is    necessary to produce collagen, the connective material of all body    tissues. It is important for healthy teeth and gums. It strengthens    capillaries and other blood vessels. It plays an important role in    healing injuries. It aids the body’s absorption of iron. It    helps fights infection and it is important in boosting the immune    system. Taken by mothers with breast engorgement, mastitis, or any    time the body feels weak.

Vitamin C is water    soluble so it cannot be stored by your body and must be frequently    replaced. Stress decreases your body’s supply of Vitamin C.    Clinical tests have shown that smokers and women taking birth control    pills have significantly lower blood levels of Vitamin C than    non-smokers and women who are not taking birth control pills. Natural    Sources: Citrus fruits and juices, acerola cherries, cantaloupe,    broccoli, alfalfa sprouts, tomatoes, green and red peppers, and strawberries.

Choline    is an element found in lecithin which is considered important in the    transmission of nerve impulses. Natural Sources: lecithin, egg yolks,    liver, wheat germ, Brewer’s yeast.

Vitamin    D is    necessary in the absorption of calcium and phosphorous which are    required for bone formation. It is also necessary in maintaining a    stable nervous system and normal heart function. Take a nice walk and    get fresh, clean air daily. Other sources: sardines, salmon, tuna,    egg yolk, sunflower seeds.

Vitamin    E protects fat soluble vitamins and red blood cells. It is    essential in cellular respiration and protection. It inhibits    coagulation of blood by preventing clots. Sources: wheat germ,    safflower nuts, sunflower seeds, whole wheat.


Minerals

Calcium    is the most abundant mineral in the body. It is essential for the    formation and repair of bone and teeth. It regulates certain body    processes such as normal behavior of nerves, muscle tone and blood    clotting. Natural Sources: Milk and milk products, fish and other    seafoods, green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, dried peas and    beans. About 800 mg per day are required for a pregnant mother. The    following table lists the food sources and amount of calcium in each food.

Food: 200 mg = 3/4 cup baby cereal    185 mg = 1 cup cream of wheat   50 mg = 2 eggs

Fish: 150 mg = 3.5 oz. Canned    herring 250 mg = 3.5 oz. Canned mackerel 200 mg = 3.5 oz. Canned    salmon with bones 100 mg = 3.5 oz. oysters 350 mg = 3.5 oz. sardines    with bones

Cooked Beans: 50 mg = 1/2 cup white    50 mg = 1/2 cup red  40 mg = 1/2 cup limas 75 mg =    1/2 cup soybeans 50 mg = 1/2 cup garbanzos 25 mg = 1/2 cup lentils

Greens: 120 mg = 1/2 cup beet    greens 90 mg = 2/3 cup broccoli 60 mg = 1/2 cup chard 150 mg = 1/2    cup collards 90 mg = 1/2 cup kale 140 mg = 1/2    cup mustard greens

Dried fruits: 100 mg = 4 figs 100    mg = 8 prunes   50 mg = 1/2 cup raisins     100 mg = 1 large orange

Nuts: 125 mg = 1/3 cup almond,    unblanched 200 mg = 1/3 cup brazil nuts 50 mg = 1/4 cup peanuts with skin    50 mg = 1/4 cup peanut butter 50 mg = 1/2 cup English walnuts

Herbs    rich in calcium: amaranth, kelp, parsley

Chromium    acts with insulin to enable the body to utilize glucose, the form in    which the body utilizes carbohydrates. Natural Sources: Thyme, black    pepper, Brewer’s yeast, liver, whole wheat and whole-grain cereals.

Copper    is active in the storage and release of iron to form hemoglobin for    red blood cells. Natural Sources: Organ meats, shellfish, nuts and    dried legumes.

Iron

Iron is an essential part    of hemoglobin, a protein structure which helps the red blood cells to    carry oxygen throughout the body. Iron is important for maintaining    blood volumes. About 40 mg per day are required for a pregnant    mother. Mother’s wisdom tells us to consume three to five times    a day of greens, fruits, nuts, and other healthy food during    pregnancy. Mothers before us have prepared well during pregnancy thru    proper nutrition.

Pregnant moms should    consume more iron to compensate for the expansion of plasma volume    during the last trimester which leads to decline in the hemoglobin    and hematocrit values in the blood. Iron is important in providing    oxygenation for mother and baby. It can mean less bleeding after    birth and a healthy baby with no breathing-related problems.

Holistic midwives suggest    an iron tonic of yellow dock root made into a tea sweetened with    honey. A hot morning drink containing blackstrap molasses sweetened    with honey can be a good substitute for coffee drinkers. Cooking in    cast iron pans can help in iron absorption.

When cooking try to    combined one or two kinds of food with vitamin C-rich food. Nothing    beats organic or pesticide-free produce from the farmer’s market    and also avoid eating canned or processed foods heavily laden with    carcinogens or chemical preservatives. Whole-grain foods such as    whole wheat flour/bread, brown sugar, unprocessed grains – rolled    oats, bulgar wheat, brown rice – contain twenty more nutrients than    refined flour.

Though absorption of iron    in meats is greater than in veggies, vegan moms can still get the    necessary amount of iron by eating a wide variety of iron-rich foods.

Iron is important for    maintaining blood volumes. About 60 mg of iron per day are required    for a pregnant mother due to higher blood volume and the demands of    fetus and placenta. The following table lists the food sources and    amount of iron in each food.

Sources: 1.3 mg    = 1 cup of raw bean sprouts 3.1 mg = 1 tbsp blackstrap molasses 1.1    mg = 2/3 cup broccoli greens 2.5 mg = 3 oz canned sardines  7.5    mg = 3 oz beef liver, sauteed 5.2 mg = 3 oz clams, oysters, other    seafoods 2.0 mg = 3 oz chicken 2.8 mg = 1 medium potato baked with    skin 1.4 mg = 1 tbsp brewer’s yeast 1.0 mg = 1 egg Dried    fruits/juices/nuts: 5.1 mg = 10-12 halves apricots 5.1 mg = 10-12    halves peaches 10.5 mg = 8 oz prune juice 5.6 mg = 1 cup    raisins 3.8 mg = 3 .5 oz cashew nuts 5.0 mg = 3.5 oz    chocolate bittersweet

Cooked    Beans/Nuts: 2.1 mg = 1 cup walnuts 13.8 mg = 1 cup red 15.6 mg = 1 cup    limas 16.8 mg = 1 cup soybeans 13.8 mg = 1 cup    garbanzos 13.6 mg = 1 cup lentils 6.8 mg = 1 cup    peanuts roasted with skin 6.4 mg = 1 cup    peanuts roasted without skin 15.6 mg = 1 cup white beans 15.4 mg = 1 cup    mung beans 10.2 mg = 1 cup common peas 22.4 mg = 1 cup    pumpkin and squash kernels 14.2 mg = 1 cup    sunflower seed kernels 2.0 mg = 1/2 cup barley  1.5 mg =    1/2 cup kidney Others: 1.9 mg    = 2/3 cup beet greens kelp caviar, buckwheat, oats, hazelnuts, wheat germ

Herbs    for anemia: alfalfa, clover, dandelion, red raspberry

Note: Oregano    inhibits iron absorption.

Folic Acid is     used    in red blood cell formation. It aids in metabolism of proteins and    is necessary for growth and division of body cells. It is an    essential vitamin for pregnant women, and deficiencies have been    linked with birth defects. Spina Bifida and Anecephaly are two Neural    Tube Defects that appear to be preventable with just 400 mcg of folic    acid. Folic Acid is considered brain food, and is needed for energy    production and the formation of red blood cells. It functions as a co-enzyme    in DNA and RNA synthesis. It is important for healthy cell division    and replication. In pregnancy it helps regulate embryonic and fetal    nerve cells formation, which is vital for normal developmnent. To be    effective in prevention, this nutrient must begin before conception,    and continue well into the pregnancy. Folic acid works best when    combined with Vitamins B12 and C. Good sources are: brewer’s    yeast, alfalfa, endive, chickpeas, oats, enriched    cereals, fruits and fruit juices, leafy green vegetables, barley,    beef, bran, brown rice, cheese, liver, milk, mushrooms,salmon, tuna,    wheat germ, whole grains, and whole wheat.

Iodinesources:    Kelp, cod liver oil

Magnesium    helps in the absorption and use of calcium and phosphorous. It aids    in bone growth and is necessary for proper functioning of nerves and    muscles. Natural Sources: Green vegetables, seeds, nuts and whole grains.

Manganese    is needed for normal tendon and bone structure. Natural Sources:    bran, cloves, ginger, buckwheat, oats, hazelnuts, chestnuts, tea    leaves, peas and beans.

Potassium    is a mineral found in the cell fluid throughout the body. It helps    regulate your body’s water balance. It is necessary for normal    growth and muscle function. Natural Sources: Green leafy vegetables,    oranges, whole grains, potatoes (with skin), broccolie, avocado,    brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cantaloupes, dates, prunes and bananas.

Selenium    works with Vitamin E. Natural Sources: bran, broccoli, onions,    tomatoes, tuna, corn, cabbage, whole wheat, beans and wheat germ.

Zinc     is    essential for growth, tissue repair and sexual development. Sources:    herring, sesame seeds


More    about Herbs

General    Toner Herbs: Red    raspberry, squaw    vine, crampbark, wild yam (not to be taken during the first and    second trimester because of the possibility of fetal masculinization)

Pre-eclampsia    or Pregnancy-induced Hypertension Herbal Helpers: alfalfa,    dandelion, peppermint, parsley

Labor    Herbal Helpers

Note:     Most labor herbal helpers should    not be used during pregnancy except during labor.

To    cleanse the birthing place:    cedar, sweetgrass, sage, lavender, rosemary

To    ease labor pains:    squaw vine, *blue cohosh (not to be used with women with heart    disease), bethroot (or birthroot is used by the Native Americans to    reduce postpartum bleeding), lavender essential oil (causes    anticonvulsant activity and sedative effects), bay laurel, lemon    balm, celery, valerian essential oil (aromatheraphy for its sedative    effect), wild yam

*Note: Blue    Cohosh is an agent to induce labor. It contains glycoside    which stimulates smooth muscle in the uterus. It is not to be used in    clients with heart disease.

To stimulate labor or increase contractions:    blue cohosh, penny royal oil, rue, tansy, skullcap, motherwort, angelica

To relax labor or decrease contractions:    lobelia, celery, valerian, chamomile, lemon balm

To expel placenta: angelica, penny royal, chamomile, basil, licorice    (contains oxytocin), blue cohosh

To  stop hemorrhage: cayenne, shepperd’s purse, motherwort, blue cohosh,    bethroot, angelica, licorice, comfrey, saffron

Store    Up Energy for Birth

Mothers can take a    pointer from the way runners prepare for a marathon to ease birth.    Load up certain foods so you will store up needed energy for delivery:

  • Eat meals rich in complex     carbohydrates such as pasta.
  • Take in more potassium     (figs, bananas, legumes, lean meat) to help release energy from     protein, fats, and carbohydrates.
  • Have extra helpings of     citrus fruit and juice and iron-rich foods.
  • During delivery, you will     lose a certain amount of Vitamin C, which is needed for the healing     process after birth. Iron will give you the needed strength.

What    to avoid?

  • Preservatives such as     nitrates, Red 40, BHA, BHT etc.
  • Caffeine, alcohol, too     much salt and refined sugar
  • White flour

 Your    needs and expectations

Having a baby is a    profound passage in a woman’s life. As an expectant mother you    are endowed with the power to bear a child and participate in the    creation of a new life. Together with your partner, you will traverse    a most satisfying event as you master the birthing of a new life.    Pregnancy allows you to examine the world around you more closely.

Take care of yourself

You are now more    sensitive to the things around you as you are entering a sacred life    experience. With empowerment and joyful feelings, you can surrender    to the work of creation. This birth is special for you.

References:

Complimentary    and Alternative Medicines – Charles Feltrow, PharmD and Juan Avila,    PharmD. It is available from Springhouse Corporation, 1111 Bethlehem    Pike, P.O. Box 908, Springhouse, PA 19477.

Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine by Michael Murray

Prescriptions for Natural Healing by James Balch.

March of Dimes http://www.modimes.org/Programs2/FolicAcid/Default.htm

Herbal    Agents Resource List

American    Botanical Council http://www.herbs.org

APRALERT http://www.pmmp.uic.edu

The    Australasian College of Herbal Studies http://www.achs@herbed.com

Center    for Disease Control and Prevention http://www.cdc.gov

Lloyd    Library http://www.libraries.uc.edu/lloyd

Office    of Dietary Supplements National Institute of Health http://www.odp.od.nih.gov

Office    of Alternative Medicine http://www.altmed.od.nih.gov

US    Food and Drug Administration http://www.fda.gov

US    National Library of Medicine http://www.nlm.nih.gov

 ——————

The article above is from Connie’s ebook on pregnancy at amazon.com , now for free. Email motherhealth@gmail.com 408-854-1883 to get a free copy, just refer Connie to those who needs a retirement savings , tax-free with health benefits at no added cost in a life policy, Index Universal Life, growing at 13%.

Published by

connie dello buono

Health educator, author and enterpreneur motherhealth@gmail.com or conniedbuono@gmail.com ; cell 408-854-1883 Helping families in the bay area by providing compassionate and live-in caregivers for homebound bay area seniors. Blogs at www.clubalthea.com Currently writing a self help and self cure ebook to help transform others in their journey to wellness, Healing within, transform inside and out. This is a compilation of topics Connie answered at quora.com and posts in this site.

One thought on “Herbs and Nutrition, during childbearing years

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.