In Ayurveda we treat the new mother with just as much importance as the new born baby, including what she eats. Now matter how a mother gives birth, her body goes through huge transformations and as she heals, it’s important for her to eat foods that are easy on the digestive system; these foods include warm, cooked, and nutrient dense. There is also a lot going on in the household as the family adjusts to the new changes so easy and quick meals are vital. One of my favorite meals to prepare for new mothers is Kitchari. You simply add all the ingredients to a rice cooker, hit start, and have a delicious meal ready in 20-40 minutes. Just as our bodies know how to give birth, they also know how to heal during postpartum, we just need to offer our bodies tools and support to promote the natural process.
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. fennel seed
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
Small handful fresh cilantro
1 small carrot chopped
1/2 zucchini quartered and sliced
1. Rinse red lentils and rice under water until water runs clear then add to rice cooker and add 4 cups fresh water
2. Melt ghee on low heat and add spices, heating until just fragrant (about 2- 3 min)
3. Add fresh cilantro to pan and stir until just wilted
4. Add spice mixture and fresh vegetables to rice cooker pot and hit start
(If your rice cooker has the setting, set to porridge otherwise choose 'white rice' setting.)
In Ayurveda it is believed that the postpartum period is a time where your vata dosha goes out of balance, therefor you want to avoid foods that will increase vata. Some foods and beverages that increase vata are broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage, lettuce and iced drinks. This is a time to focus on warm teas, porridges, soups, and stews.
Aleiela has a background in nutrition, is an Ayurvedic therapist, birth, and postpartum doula and mom of a 10 month old daughter. She specializes in helping the woman heal her body naturally after giving birth. She gives bodywork, cooks meals, gives lifestyle recommendations, all while supporting new mothers to trust their instincts and transform into their new roles.
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