What should be a mother’s first meal after birth

A wise way to plan the first meal after giving birth

What will you eat after delivering your little one? That is probably the absolutely last thing on your mind as you get ready to end of your third trimester and embrace motherhood with gusto! However, no matter how excited, anxious or rushed you are, you must plan what to eat after delivery. Let’s admit it, the entire process of birthing is hard and requires massive amounts of energy and strength. And while for some women, labour might take only a couple of hours, for others, it might feel like a never-ending marathon.

So, eating food, amidst all the sweat and pain, might not seem like a priority, but once the baby is delivered, and you’ve taken a breath of relief, getting nourished will be of paramount importance. To be more accurate, after feeding the first milk or colostrum to your little one, it’ll hit you just how hungry you are. That’s when the question arises – what to eat after giving birth? Here are a few tips that will keep you sorted post-delivery.

Things to remember while planning a postpartum diet:

  • You’re going to be tired, sweaty and clammy after labour, and your hormones might go on a roller coaster ride. So, naturally, eating a full-course meal might seem impossible and rightly so.
  • You might also feel sore post-delivery and might want soft, easy to eat meals that do not require much effort to digest.
  • So, what you will need is a balanced meal and food that is loaded with tons of nutrients.

The best foods after delivery for an Indian mother

Following are a few hassle-free food options that can be consumed immediately after delivery:

  1. Rice and moong dal khichdi: Khichdi has got to be a favourite food when you’re not in the state to eat too many things at a time. This is because its porridge-like consistency makes it easy to chew and digest. Khichdi also incorporates multiple food groups and is tasty. Rice, moong dal (or any other staple dal of your choice) can be pressure-cooked with peas and carrots or spinach and methi. The vegetables in it help provide fibre, which is extremely important for ensuring the easy passage of stools post-delivery. Remember to add asafoetida (hing) to relieve gas, and cumin seeds (jeera) to help ease digestion.
  2. Chicken soup: This soup has the ability to quench both fluid and energy requirements, and is a great meal option post-delivery. The chicken and egg added to it serve as excellent sources of protein. And the soup can be enhanced with corn and chopped spinach to provide extra energy and fibre too. The salt in it can make up for the lost electrolytes. It is a simple, easy to eat meal, which you won’t have the heart to refuse.
  3. Semolina porridge: In case you’re wondering what to eat after Caesarean delivery, which has left you with several painful stitches that makes it almost impossible to sit up, semolina porridge is a great option. While the cereal in it will give you energy and milk will provide calcium, do not forget to add powdered nuts like almond and cashew to increase its fibre content and nutritive value. Adding desiccated coconut to this can also provide a lot of fibre.
  4. Choice of fruit: Remember to pair your first meal after delivery with a fruit. Vitamin C and iron-rich fruits must be especially chosen at this time to hasten healing and to make up for the iron lost through blood. So, oranges, sweet limes, and pomegranates are some of the best fruits to eat after delivery. Papaya is also recommended.

Fuel your body to regain normalcy

It is essential to plan the first meal after delivery, wisely. Also remember that while you might not consume anything for hours while undergoing labour, after the baby is born, you must focus on food without delay. This will help you heal faster, get your strength back, and provide your body with the nutrients you need to embark on the breastfeeding journey.