hemp protein barsNo CommentsRead more
I know some of you were asking for granola bars, and while these aren’t granola bars per se, they are delicious! Made with four types of seeds, they’re packed with protein, iron, B vitamins, magnesium and omega-3s (those essential fatty acids you keep hearing about that reduce inflammation). Omega-3s are important for baby’s brain development as well as brain health for all ages! Both hemp and chia seeds are complete plant proteins, meaning they contain all 9 essential amino acids we need as humans. Hemp is also one of the world’s most sustainable crops because it grows in nearly every climate and is used all over the world as a source of food, fiber, textile, paper and even fuel! To make these bars a little more toddler friendly, I cut them up into bite sized chunks.
preparing your body for pregnancyNo CommentsRead more
I feel very lucky to have learned how closely related the way we treat our bodies is to our health before I was ready to have children. If I had still been eating bagels and quad venti caramel macchiatos from Starbucks, I know this season of my life would have looked very different. I had been eating a nutrient rich diet for years before my husband and I even started talking about children. I was able to balance my hormones and heal myself of debilitating dysmenorrhea just by cutting out sugar and processed food from my diet. I had done biannual whole food cleanses for a few years to rid my body of any toxins that had accumulated. In the year leading up to “trying” I was very intent on limiting alcohol to very special occasions, exercising regularly and eating as much nutrient rich plant foods as possible. Even when we started trying for a baby, it took us almost a year to get pregnant.
If you are able to plan ahead of time for pregnancy, you are really giving yourself and your baby the best environment to thrive. Most expecting mommas spend hours researching the best carseat, mattress, stroller, etc. but put very little energy into preparing their bodies for the miracle of carrying and forming a baby for 40 weeks! I’m not saying that researching those things are wrong, I’m just saying that if a tiny human is growing from what is stored in our bodies, wouldn’t we want to have the best nutrient store to grow the strongest and healthiest baby possible? I like to think of our bodies as gardens. The more you tend to your garden and feed it with the right compost, clean water and sunshine, the better the vegetables will taste and grow. The same goes for our bodies and growing a baby.
all fat is not created equalNo CommentsRead more
We need three types of macronutrients to live – carbohydrates, protein and fat. However not all fat is created equal. I think most of us know that saturated fat from meat (red meat, white meat, dairy, eggs and fish) creates plaque in our bodies and increases risk of heart disease and stroke and that trans-fats (partially hydrogenated oils) are even worse still. But what is considered healthy fat? It’s best to stick with whole food forms of fat, and limit oil consumption. Although I do use small amounts of olive and coconut oil for dressings, cooking and baking, it is not what I would consider a health food. Comparatively, it is high in calories and low in nutrients and for the majority of our food, we should stick with foods low in calories and high in nutrients. Dr. Fuhrman, who I received my Certificate in Nutritarian Studies from, says H=N/C (health = nutrients/calories), in other words, the more nutrients per calorie, the better for our health. Below are the fats that give you the best bang for your calorie buck.
my family’s clean skin & hair care routineNo CommentsRead more
If you’ve been following along for awhile you probably already saw my clean make-up routine post where I talk about the dangerous ingredients often used in make-up and skin care products. Ingredients that can damage sperm, interfere with normal child development and increase risk for breast cancer as well as other cancers. I included a list of 20 ingredients we should avoid in that post or you can download the ThinkDirty app or the Environmental Working Group’s Healthy Living app and start scanning your products right away to rate them.
my daughter’s birth storyNo CommentsRead more
Introvert by nature, I tend not to share deeply personal things in this space, but as I mentioned when I shared my son’s birth story, my hope is that in sharing this, I can help empower other women, educate them on birth choice, and keep them and their babies safer.
my son’s birth storyNo CommentsRead more
A woman’s birth experience is incredibly important and life changing, something that she will always remember. My grandmother still talks about all five of her births to this day, one of which involved a vacuum and her son losing some of his scalp. It is a transformative experience that can be either beautiful and empowering or devastating, traumatic and one that scars her literally and figuratively. Before I became pregnant I was fortunate enough to learn about birth choice. My mom had two out of the four of us at home with a midwife, and all four of us without any drugs. My little sister was born upstairs in my parent’s bedroom while I played with my siblings downstairs. We all piled in bed to meet her when she was just minutes old. My oldest sister had used a group of midwives for both of her daughters, one in a hospital, one at home in the water. Not all women have the privilege of knowing women who talk about their birth experience and birth choice. For me, it was incredibly empowering to know these women and also read every birth story I came across, including all the stories in Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth (which is a must read for any woman who is or wants to become pregnant). The United States has the second worst newborn death rate in the developed world and has one of the highest maternal mortality rates among all industrialized countries. There is no reason for this, and we need to change these statistics. I am a very private person by nature, but I have decided to share my birth stories here in hopes that it will empower other women, educate them on birth choice, and keep them and their babies safer.
protein power ballsNo CommentsRead more
These snack balls are perfect for a pre work out snack, post work out recovery, lunch box treat, or in my case “need calories for breastfeeding” snack. They are packed with protein (4-5 grams per ball), good fats and minimal natural sugar from the dates which you can certainly omit if you don’t want any sugar. I’ve made these with sunbutter so that they are allergy friendly but you can use whatever nut butter you have on hand (peanut, cashew, almond, etc).
electrolyte ice cubes for morning sickness & laborNo CommentsRead more
Before I became pregnant I liked to think I wouldn’t have morning sickness. I don’t have a weak stomach, I don’t get car sickness or get nauseous easily. When I found out I was pregnant with my son I felt great, for not even two days, then the all-day nausea hit me like a boulder. Food was the last thing on earth I wanted to think about, see or smell, never mind eat. I dreaded going to work and when I got home I would lie on the couch, watch The Office and beg my husband to bring me ice cubes. I looked forward to vomiting (which didn’t even happen once per day) because it was the only way to get a few minutes of relief. Some mommas out there know exactly what I’m talking about and this post is for you! But it’s also for anyone who plans to labor as much as possible at home or is planning a home birth! If you are planning to deliver in a hospital or birth center, you can ask if they have a freezer you can use so you can take these with you.
my clean make-up routineNo CommentsRead more
What would you think if I told you that skincare products are not regulated and all of the ingredients don’t even have to be listed on the label? Not only that, but that most of these common ingredients are scientifically proven as hormone disruptors and can even increase your risk for cancer? It is in fact, true. When I first discovered how many toxic chemicals were lurking in my skincare products I was alarmed! The average woman uses 12 products containing 168 different ingredients daily and the average man uses 6 products daily with 85 ingredients. Our skin is the largest organ in our bodies and absorbs up to 64% of what we apply on it. The purpose of this post is to educate other women and men about the dangers of some common skincare ingredients that can damage sperm, interfere with normal child development and increase risk for breast cancer as well as other cancers.
shaved asparagus saladNo CommentsRead more
One of the very first spring vegetables to emerge on the east coast is one of my favorites, asparagus! One cup of asparagus provides you with 100% DV of vitamin K and 67% DV of folate, both super important for women who want to become pregnant or are pregnant. It’s also an excellent source of copper, vitamin B1, selenium, vitamin B2, vitamin C and vitamin E. Asparagus is sensitive to heat so to get the most nutrition out of it, it’s best to eat it raw or steam it only for a few minutes. The first time I heard of shaving asparagus and eating it raw was probably six years ago and I’ve been hooked ever since!