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Giving birth is the ultimate motherhood marathon. Whether you triumphed with a natural birth or went for the help of modern medicine (me!!), you are a rockstar, and it’s important to fuel your body for healing.

If this isn’t your first time giving birth, then you’ll know what I mean when I say that post-delivery, there’s a lot of healing that needs to happen. I try to stay as oblivious as possible to the damage done, and focus on the healing.
Giving your body the nutrients it needs will help you heal faster and feel better sooner. This will enable you to be a better mama because you’ll be getting back to yourself sooner, rather than later.

Here is my list of 5 Foods to Scarf Down After Giving Birth

1. Chickpeas. These babies are super high in Zinc. Zinc is an essential nutrient to help your body heal, repair cells and build collagen. This is exactly what your body is doing whether you delivered vaginally or C-section. Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans): 1 cup: 2.5 milligras (17 percent DV)

I mention Chickpeas because they are a form of food most can eat. AND, there are a lot of fun dessert recipes with Chickpeas as the main source. You can also eat hummus, which is made from Chickpeas. Chocolate Covered Katie has one of my favorite sweet treat recipes with chickpeas, which I suggest you make and pack for the hospital!

How does zinc benefit wound healing? Well, why don’t you read what I found from advancedtissue.com. They explain it really well. 

The mineral zinc is essential for overall health and various aspects of cellular metabolism, according to the National Institutes of Health. In terms of wound healing, it benefits the body by helping to maintain the structural integrity of dermal tissue and mucosal membranes. That’s why many clinicians turn to zinc supplements for people suffering from skin ulcers. Another benefit is that zinc aids in the division of cells, which is the function responsible for creating new tissue. Additionally, it plays a big role in immune function. A stronger immune system is important for fighting off potentially harmful elements and, in effect, avoiding the development of wound infections.–
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2. Oatmeal. This is on my 5 Foods To Lose The Baby Weight and Pump Up Your Milk Supply List as well. You want to eat this right after giving birth because the fiber will help your intestines get moving again. Pain meds, trauma, stress, IVs and all sorts of other things can really stop your body from functioning. The fiber in oatmeal will encourage your body to push waste through, without causing too much gas or bloating. Some foods are higher in fiber than oatmeal, but that could just cause you more gas because your body isn’t eliminating waste right after birth. A smaller dose of fiber, with the huge benefits to your milk supply make this an amazing food to inhale as much as you can right after giving birth.
3. Blueberries. What a lot of new moms don’t realize is that giving birth in the hospital is very similar to having surgery. The process involves medication and drugs your body isn’t used too. Now, I delivered all three of my boys in the hospital with an epidural, and I am so glad I did, so don’t think I am knocking hospital births at all, but there are some realities we need to accept. When we allow the medications to enter our body, our body fights back by going into an oxidative state, and the medications are basically toxins in our system that produce free-radicals. This is a super simple way to describe what happens, but basically we put some junk in (miracle junk in my opinion!!), and we need some antioxidant-rich foods to help us clean it out. Blueberries are super high in antioxidants, and they are delicious! So, we want to gobble up all we can to help our bodies recover and clean out all the free radicals and get back on track with a normal ph balance.
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4. Red Peppers. Red peppers have a super high Vitamin C count. Vitamin C is very important for collagen production, which is what is going to help your body heal after an incision or tear. Vitamedica.com says,

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that helps cross-link collagen. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and if you’ve had an incision, this protein is crucial to proper wound healing. Stress depletes vitamin C stores so getting extra after surgery is recommended (upwards of 900 mg a day in divided doses).

Well, giving birth is a huge stress. Just thinking about it stresses me out, and I’ve done it three times now! If this is your first birth you are preparing for, you can read some of my birth stories for my first, second and third. I always enjoyed reading the stories of other people to help me emotionally prepare for what I was going to encounter.
5. Shiitake Mushrooms. The last food is a bit harder to scarf down because not many of us like to eat raw mushrooms. But get this, Sciencedaily has an article discussing a study done at the University of Florida.
A new University of Florida study shows increased immunity in people who ate a cooked shiitake mushroom every day for four weeks.

Of the thousands of mushroom species globally, about 20 are used for culinary purposes. Shiitake mushrooms are native to Asia and are cultivated for their culinary and medicinal value.

Keeping the immune system strong is essential to healing post delivery. Most-likely, you won’t feel like frying up some mushrooms just after delivery, but you can order Mushroom soup, or make it ahead of time to have ready for you when you come home.

So many mamas are in a hurry to lose weight or produce a lot of milk, that they forget to focus on healing their own bodies. These foods can help you heal after having a C-section or delivering vaginally. Each method has its own issues and wounds associated, and all of these foods will help your body get back on track and feeling great, so you can go on to be the best mama you can be.

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