It is so important as a new mum that you take some time each day for yourself. As impossible as this seems to every new parent with a newborn baby, it can be achieved by including a few basic healthy habits into your daily routine.
It is especially important in the first 6-8 weeks after child birth to take good care of yourself to rebuild your strength. You will also need plenty of rest, good nutrition, and help during the first few weeks.
You probably won't get a solid eight hours sleep for many years to come however every minute of sleep here and there will help you to better care for your baby.
Here are some tips to help you get more rest:
Let others help
Basically for the first few weeks your baby's routine consists of feeding every three hours day and night, then a nappy change, then settling them back to sleep. By the time you have settled them back to sleep you don't have long before they wake for their next feed. So let others take care of nappy change, settling, bathing etc. so you can get a little more sleep.
Sleep when baby sleeps
As hard as this is when there are one million other things to be done around the house - the dishes and washing can wait! Look after yourself by sleeping when your baby sleeps. It will help you feel so much better after a nap and you will be in a better frame of mind to care for your baby.
As a new mother especially if you are breastfeeding, it is so important to eat a healthy well balanced diet with a wide variety of food. Eating may be the last thing on your mind, but it is important that you make good food choices. Nutricious food will help rebuild your strength after birth and enable you to better care for your baby.
To get the increased nutrients, vitamin and mineral requirements during breastfeeding, a variety of foods from the following five food groups should be eaten daily.
Meats or Alternatives
Meats or alternatives should be eaten daily such as red meat, chicken, fish, eggs, legumes, tofu or nuts.
Fruits provide vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre. Eat two serves of fruits per day such as Avocado, Mango, Grapes, Lemon, Lime, Bananas, Berries, Orange, Apple, and Lychee.
Vegetables are also a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Eat five serves of vegetables per day from leafy greens, Broccoli, Sweet Potato, Bell Peppers, Tomatoes, Green Peas, Beetroot, Carrots, Pumpkin, Sweet Potato, Spinach, Kale, Brussels Sprouts, Asparagus and Sweet Corn.
Breads and cereals
Breads and cereals are important forms of carbohydrates. They are a great source of vitamins and fibre, and are satisfying without containing too many calories. Eight serves are recommended per day of wholemeal varieties such as bread, potatoes, breakfast cereals, rice, pasta, noodles, maize, millet, oats, sweet potatoes, yams and cornmeal.
Dairy foods are important because they contain calciumand other nutrients that your baby needs. Two serves of Dairy foods is recommended per day such as milk, cheese and yoghurt.
Eating a healthy nutritious diet can be achieved easily by making good food choices and will just become part of your daily routine. A good tip is to make sure all your snack food is healthy. Banana or mixed unsalted nuts are great instant ready snacks too.
The benefits of exercise are huge and one of the best ways you can take care of yourself as a new mum. Get outside for a few minutes each day. You can start walking and doing postpartum exercises, as advised by your healthcare provider and build up from there.
Exercise can help eliminate backache, constipation and fatigue. It is great to help lose that pregnancy weight and can help you sleep better, prevent depression, improve self esteem, prepare mind and body for the demands that come with caring for your baby or child. Plus it is one of the easiest habits to include in your new daily routine with your newborn baby.
Taking time for yourself can be achieved by including a few basic healthy habits into your daily routine. Getting rest, eating healthy and taking your newborn baby for a daily walk in the pram or carrier will all help you be a better mother for your newborn baby or child.
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