We are excited to share one of our fave stories from Fitness Magazine here on FitSugar!
Ah, motherhood. You've gained a new little bundle of joy — and to go with it, some extra pounds. Don't let food worries add to your stress and sleepless nights as you adjust to your new schedule. We sought out the best foods to keep you going and slim you down in the process.
Rev Up Your Engine
The key to your energy isn't just how much (or little) you sleep each night, but instead, what's on your plate. "One of the main things a healthy diet can do is give new moms energy," says Kathy McManus, RD, a Fitness advisory board member and director of the department of nutrition at Brigham Women's Hospital in Boston. "It's important to spread food throughout the day so that you get an even amount of calories. This will give you lasting power to take care of your baby and yourself."
See more tips after the break!
When you eat foods rich with nutrients, you'll notice that your calories go a long way. You'll feel fuller longer, and will have the get-up-and-go mentality you need for those 3 a.m. feeding calls. McManus suggests the following to fuel up on:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains
- Lean protein, like fish, beef, and soy foods
- Dairy — choose skim or low-fat milk
- Leafy greens
- Iron, especially if you suffer from postpartum symptoms. You can find this in things like fortified cereals, prune juice, and lean meats.
- Vitamin C, which can help with wound healing for mothers who delivered via C-section. Find this in oranges, tomatoes, and natural fruit juices.
If you're in the mood for a snack, McManus says to think carefully before you choose. Steer clear from snack packs since they are stocked with tons of artificial sweeteners. Instead, either have a tiny portion of what you actually want or pick from one of the following:
- Whole-grain crackers with hummus
- Nuts (stash some in your purse in case you get a craving on the go)
- A cup of whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk
- A hardboiled egg with some carrots
- Low-fat cheese with a piece of fruit
- Peanut butter on an apple
- Plain Greek yogurt — add in a cup of berries to avoid added sugar from the flavored kind.
More from Fitness:
The Truth About Your Body After Baby