a baby is a very exciting time, however it can also be an un-nerving
experience and many woman worry during their nine months about the
health of their baby.
To alleviate the stress that builds up during the pregnancy, plan
instead to have a healthy pregnancy and guide your thoughts to the
positive aspects of this wonderful experience. You can then rest
assured that you have done your very best to have a healthy baby.
It is important not to feel guilty about what you
might have eaten or done during the first few weeks of pregnancy.
It is natural to worry and you cannot change the past but you can
start to make healthy choices for yourself and your baby now.
If you are not already on a macrobiotic diet, make simple and slow
changes to your diet. Begin by adding organic whole grains, vegetable
protein, and fresh vegetables into your present diet rather than
cutting out the old foods.
Pregnancy is a healthy time. It is very important
to eat a wide variety of foods. Your baby needs a broad selection
of ingredients and nutrients to choose from.
Pregnancy is not the time to be working on your condition
and eating a restricted diet. Aim to eat in a balanced manner and
this will improve your health and the health of your baby.
Use organic, living foods every day. This includes whole
grains, beans, sea vegetables, vegetables, nuts, seeds and fruit.
If you are changing over to a macrobiotic diet at beginning
of pregnancy go very slowly - introduce new foods and better quality
ingredients over a number of weeks - add foods in rather than cut
Eat a broad diet including; cracked grains,
sourdough bread, noodles, pasta, olive and sesame oil, root vegetables,
round vegetables, leafy vegetables, all kinds of beans, tofu, tempeh,
seitan, natto, fish (if craved), all kinds of sea vegetables including
toasted nori (almost daily, fruit, various seasonings.
Use a variety of cooking styles; soups, steaming, blanching,
pressed salad, raw salad, stews, long sauté, stir-fry, tempura
and deep frying (once a week or so), pressure-cooking, and baking.
Make home made sugar free desserts; kanten, mousse, sweet
kuzu, rice pudding, steamed fruit, cookies and pies (less often
but still make them)
Remember to include natural sweet taste: pureed sweet soups,
sweet vegetable puree, sweet vegetable tea, carrot juice, hot apple
juice, amasake, and steamed fruit.
Remember to use some gentle grounding dishes: steamed whole
vegetables, stews, long sauté, and baked beans.
Remember to keep it light: blanched, pressed, and raw salads.
Make dressings with brown rice vinegar, lemon, or umeboshi. Use
light pickles such as sauerkraut and dill.
Keep it rich and nourishing: Use oil on a daily basis, use
tahini or nut butters in dressings or cooking, have steamed sourdough
bread, add sautéed vegetables to grain dishes or a little
oil to soup, use nuts and seeds to garnish dishes.
Use vegetable protein: Beans in stews, soups or salads, tofu
or tempeh in soup, vegetables dishes or on bread, natto on rice
or with broth and seitan in stews.
Soups can be varied; thick, brothy, pureed, or with noodles, grains,
and beans. Have miso a few times a week. It isn't necessary to have
miso on a daily basis. Enjoy daily soups seasoned with salt or shoyu
When eating out ENJOY IT! Relish every moment and every dish.
Please do not feel guilty. Choose sensibly such as Japanese, Italian,
Greek or Seafood.
If you crave an extreme food like ice cream, try to satisfy
it first with a healthy alternative. If you cannot satisfy it there,
have a small amount and really enjoy it.
Don't replace snacks for a meal. If you have filled up on
snack food, have a small plate of a balanced meal. This will help
to bring you back to balance, and keep you balanced in general.
Morning sickness - these are
some of the causes: change in hormones, low blood sugar, stress, fatigue,
or change in digestion. There is a direct relationship between the
liver and placenta. If the liver is stagnated there is more chance
of morning sickness.
for Morning Sickness
Chew slowly, have smaller and more meals,
increase vegetables and vegetable quality protein, avoid extremes
especially sugar, spices, oily/greasy foods, baked flour, animal
food or salt.
Foods that help - sauerkraut, lightly steamed greens with
lemon, tea with lemon, ginger tea, ginger in soup and other dishes,
umeboshi, rice cakes.
Make sure to rest and exercise outdoors.
Get gentle massage especially shiatsu.
Aromatherapy - essential oils such as lavender, lemon and
Increase intake of vegetables. Make 50% of
your diet vegetables.
Increase green leafy vegetables.
Cut back on salt, baked foods, refined flour, animal foods
or too much grain.
Drink warm kukicha tea. If you tend not to drink much, increase
your liquid intake.
Take kanten tea or aduki bean tea.
Make aduki beans with sweet vegetables.
Daily body rub.
Get a massage.
for Increasing Iron
Eat a variety of organic living foods
Don't eat more that 50% grain. 40% is fine. Don't forget
that bread, cookies, pies, rice cakes, rice pudding etc are grains
and increase your daily intake.
Eat at least 50% vegetables.
Have sukiyaki on a weekly basis.
Eat a bunch of blanched watercress daily.
Use dulse in vegetable dishes and soups a few times a week.
Have tempeh cooked with greens, sauerkraut and dulse.
Make carrot and burdock kinpira at least once a week.
Make fish soup or stew with root and round vegetables. Can
sauté the vegetables first. Add greens and ginger at the
end. Season with miso.
Use mochi in miso soup.
Have sweet rice and aduki beans and add sautéed onion
at the end on a weekly basis.
Keep all seasonings mild.
Walk out in nature every day.
Do breathing exercises daily.
Do the body rub daily.
Make time for yourself. You become
a mother as soon as you become pregnant and your baby needs you
already. This is a very important time for you to get to know your
baby. This is a time to understand and observe the changes that
are going on in your body. Look for ways to slow down and focus
on you and the baby. If you haven't practiced meditation before,
early pregnancy is a great time to start. Meditation doesn't have
to be a huge procedure. It can be as simple as sitting in a rocking
chair and observing your breath or quietly knitting. Walking in
nature and being conscious of the contact with the earth in each
step is another example of simple meditation.
There are masses of books and guides on meditation
that offer a variety of different styles. You can also take a workshop
if you enjoy the company of others. Chanting is also a wonderful
to move and cleanse your energy.
Make time for exercise. If you have
already being following an exercise program, you may wish to continue
that in a modified form. The safest kind of exercise during pregnancy
is walking in nature, tai chi and yoga. It is not a good idea to
start any strenuous or dangerous exercise at this stage. Walking
is one of the most balanced forms of exercise. Remember that even
blocks of 15 minutes are as beneficial as exercising for an hour
at a time. As your pregnancy progresses you may find it easier to
exercise for shorter periods rather than one long stint. Try to
walk as much as possible in your daily life, to work, use stairs,
park your car further away from the store or walk during your lunch
hour or after dinner.
Fatigue. During the first few months
it is normal to feel tired. Listen to your body. You are going through
huge hormonal changes during this period and you need extra rest.
Take the time to nap even if it is for only 15 minutes or relax
with your feet up. You may have to go to bed earlier too. Most women
do get their energy back again in the second trimester.
Read more articles
from Melanie Waxman and about Macrobiotic Family Health»