Feeding, diapers, burping, rocking, pain killers, feeding….Sound familiar? Ah, yes the joys of new motherhood. The miracle of new life and cuteness gives way to this endless and overwhelming cycle very quickly. Thinking of meals seems impossible and soon chinese takeout boxes pile up in the kitchen. Luckily, like some new mothers, I had my own mother come and stay with me and she was an absolute life saver; with her healthy and delicious home cooked meals, I had the energy I needed and a quick recovery. I know this is a luxury, but I do believe that it is possible to be healthy during the first six weeks if you are prepared. If you’re about to have your first child, are planning for a second, or would like to remain healthy after your mother/relative has left, here are some tips that will really help you.
When you’re pregnant cook as many meals as you can fit in your freezer before the baby comes. If all you have to do is defrost, you will be much less tempted to order in. Cook dishes in bulk so you can split them into three or four portions. That way you won’t have to do as much cooking.
I know your meal may not look like the photo above but it’s essentially a piece of grilled salmon, surrounded by a few tomatoes, on top of a grain such as quinoa or couscous. Grilling or baking is a quick and healthy way to prepare almost any meat. Get someone to pick up fish such as salmon and grill it or put it in the oven for 15-20 mins to eat with a salad or for dinner with some vegetables. Shrimps take 2-3 mins. Even chicken can be boiled or grilled easily to be used in salads/sandwiches or pasta sauces. Identify foods that need minimal prep and can provide the nutrition required.
KEEP THE FRIDGE STOCKED WITH HEALTHY SNACKS
It doesn’t take much time to cut up fruits and vegetables. In the morning cut up a few portions of fruits and vegetables or have precut vegetables/fruits from the grocery store stocked in your fridge. You will need to snack (especially if you’re breastfeeding) between meals and these will do your body much more good than cookies or chocolates.
Make two smoothies every morning and put it in your fridge. Throw your favorite fruit in the blender with a few tablespoons of yogurt and some orange juice. The whole process takes a few minutes and will provide a very healthy and quick energy boost during the day or fuel during the sleepless nights.
If all else fails and you have to get food from somewhere look for healthy options. Some cities have healthy meal delivery options at reasonable prices. There are also people who cook healthy meals at home and cater weekly. There are options out there. Just make sure that they have been tried and tested before the baby arrives so you have a reliable back up plan.