This has been the most challenging postpartum period I have had, hands down. I may be handling it okay mentally and emotionally, but physically it’s kicking my butt. My first two babies didn’t exclusively breastfeed so I guess I caught a break as far as my hypoglycemia issues.
They also were having formula and solids by 7 months so my body was able to handle the demands they put on me for breastmilk. But this time, at 7 months, I am still almost exclusively breastfeeding, and having trouble physically. I often feel lightheaded and as if I haven’t eaten for hours, even when I just had a meal.
Ruling out thyroid issues, which have been on a rollercoaster with each baby, I realized there is a much bigger demand on my body than I have ever experienced and I need to figure out how to manage it.
Have you ever had this problem? What foods have helped you balance out?Managing Postpartum Health Issues
I feel like I am constantly eating, but small nutrient and protein-rich snacks are the best way to eat during the day for breastfeeding and postpartum health. Protein smoothies, lactation cookies, granola bars, fruit and vegetables are all good choices.
One thing that is certain is a good breakfast is absolutely necessary to get your head in the game and start the day right. I had been having my protein smoothies later in the day, but now I am preparing them with or shortly after breakfast to give my body a boost. Fruit, protein powder, kale, milk or whatever you like will give you a good kick, and this time it’s for energy, not putting you down with a fuzzy head and shaking limbs.Keep a Journal
Keeping a journal each day is a good way to manage breastfeeding health so you can see what is (or isn’t) going into your body. I decided to write down everything I ate today and low and behold, it wasn’t very much! No wonder why I am feeling so lightheaded. Ugh. This is what I wrote down:
Breakfast: Cinnamon brioche with cream cheese, coffee
Snack: Protein smoothie, peanut butter crackers, apple
Lunch: Toaster pizza on homemade semolina bread, water
Snack: Lactation Cookies (um, 4?), milk, juice
Dinner: Fish, rice, veggies, milk
Snack: More cookies, cereal
This is not a good breastfeeding diet, people! I need to get on the ball so I can actually function. More fruit and veggies during the day, and a better breakfast. At least, I was able to make the Lactation Cookies today. They are sooooo yummy. They are made with brewer’s yeast, which is good for hypoglycemics like me, but most importantly, it contains a lot of protein and a ton of vitamins and minerals which helps breastmilk production. Anything to keep up the supply!Health Benefits of Brewer’s Yeast
I decided to try the brewer’s yeast because of it’s high protein content and the vitamins and minerals that could potentially help me feel better. The extra protein is good for the kids, too! Brewer’s yeast in lactation cookies helps with hypoglycemia – ding, ding, ding! It also helps with high cholesterol, eczema, stress, fatigue and constipation, among other ailments.Lactation Cookies
This is a reproduction of the Lactation Cookie recipe on food.com by Noel Trujillo.
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
4 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons flax seed meal (ground)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups oats
1 cup chocolate chips
2 – 4 tablespoons brewer’s yeast
- Preheat oven to 350°
- Mix the flaxseed meal and water and let sit for 3-5 minutes
- Beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar well
- Add eggs and mix well
- Add flaxseed mix and vanilla, beat well
- Sift together flour, brewers yeast, baking soda, and salt
- Add dry ingredients to butter mix
- Stir in oats and chips
- Scoop onto baking sheet
- Bake for 12-15 minutes
- Let set for a couple minutes then remove from tray
Do you have a different lactation cookie recipe?