When Is Omega-3 Supplementation Necessary?

When Is Omega-3 Supplementation Necessary?

You’ve probably heard that it’s a good idea to get a decent amount of omega-3 fatty acids in your diet. Omega-3s are essential fats that your body can’t synthesize on its own; you can only get them in specific food sources like fish, walnuts, and leafy vegetables. But it’s not always easy to eat a balanced diet that’s rich in fatty fish, for example, which explains why omega-3 supplements have become a popular alternative for people who want to make sure they’re getting enough of these crucial fats.

However, science so far suggests that omega-3 supplementation may not be necessary for everyone. Here’s what you need to know about the supplement, and if you need it.

What are omega-3s?

Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of polyunsaturated fats. The three primary types of omega-3s are ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), and EPA (eicosapentaenoic
acid). EPA and DHA mainly come from fish, while ALA is found in vegetable oils and nuts, flax seeds, leafy vegetables, and some animal fat.

Studies show that omega-3s are particularly beneficial for the heart – working to lower LDL cholesterol and also contribute to proper cell growth and brain function.

When do I need omega-3 supplementation?

While you’re typically advised to eat fish twice a week to get your omega-3s, most primary healthcare providers wouldn’t outrightly recommend for you to take supplementation. But – if they’re the same thing, why not? Well, that’s because it might not be necessary for you. Find out for sure below:

If you’re in good health

If you’re healthy and at low or average risk for heart disease, you probably don’t need an omega-3 supplement; provided that you’re eating at least two servings of fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, or herring, of course. Getting your omega-3s from food is always preferable to a supplement. In addition to getting your required omega-3s, you’d also potentially replace the less healthful foods in your diet, such as processed foods, refined grains, and red meats.

If you’re a non-fish eater or pregnant

If you’re not into seafood, then an omega-3 supplement is something to consider. Also, don’t worry if you’re a vegan – algae-based supplements are available. Supplementing with omega-3s is especially crucial if you’re looking to conceive, or are pregnant, and can’t get sufficient fatty acids through your diet. That’s because research shows that DHA supplementation when pregnant is vital for fetal brain health and maturation. A daily 1-gram supplement could provide you with the health benefits you seek.

If you’re at risk for cardiovascular disease

A high-dose omega-3 supplementation (4 grams per day) may be advisable if you have elevated triglyceride level and a history of cardiovascular disease or have major risk factors for it. Do note that high levels of omega-3 supplementation may lead to several uncomfortable side effects such as belching, bad breath, heartburn, loose stools, and nosebleeds. Therefore, as a general thumb of rule, you should always consult your doctor if you’re looking to supplement with omega-3s to protect your heart.

Here’s How You Can Keep Your Eyes Healthy

Here’s How You Can Keep Your Eyes Healthy

Of your five primary senses – sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch, which are you most afraid of losing? If you’re like most people, your answer is your ability to see. Our eyesight is precious; it helps us see a world of vibrant colours and enjoy the pleasure of seeing a loved one smile. It is, therefore, evident that we need to pay particular attention to taking care of our eyes.

Below, find out a list of things you should do to keep your eyes in good health.

#1 – Eat well

As a child, when you were prodding and picking at your carrots, your parents must have told you that carrots were good for your eyesight in desperate attempts to get you to clean your plate. Well, there’s some truth to it. That’s because it contains high amounts of lutein, a common antioxidant that’s thought to play a central role in protecting your eyes against harmful blue light.

And it’s not just lutein that’s good for your eyes, either. Research suggests that you should eat a healthy diet that’s rich in vitamin C and E, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc to maintain healthy eyesight. Excellent food sources to include on your plate, therefore, are leafy greens – such as spinach, kale, and collard greens – and fatty fish, like salmon, tuna, and halibut. If your diet is lacking, however, you can look out for eye vitamins that are rich in the nutrients as mentioned earlier.

#2 – Use protective eyewear

If you’re exposed to hazardous or airborne materials at home or on the job, wear safety glasses and protective goggles. Also, if you’re an athlete who plays ice hockey, racquetball, and lacrosse, be sure to wear helmets fitted with sports goggles or protective eye masks to shield your eyes from potential injuries.

Protective eyewear extends beyond safety goggles; remember that your eyes can burn, too. Just like how you protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays with sunscreen, you should also protect your eyes with sunglasses. Ensure that the ones you get block at least 99% of UV-A and UV-B radiation. For extra protection, look out for polarized sunglasses – these can block glares by filtering out horizontal light waves.

#3 – Visit your eye doctor regularly

Visiting an ophthalmologist isn’t only reserved for those who’re only having issues with their eyesight. Regular visits to an eye doctor where you undergo a dilated eye exam can help uncover eye diseases – some of which have no presenting symptoms at first – in the early stages while treatment to prevent vision loss is most effective.

Here are a few examples of common eye diseases that regular visits to the eye doctor can help catch early on:

  • Cataracts – A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye, which leads to a decrease in vision.
  • Diabetic retinopathy – A diabetes complication that causes damage to the blood vessels in the back of the eye, leading to blindness.
  • Glaucoma – A group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve which is responsible for transferring visual information from your retina to the vision centres of your brain.

So, if it’s been more than a few years since you last saw an eye doctor, or if you’ve never seen one before, it’s time to schedule for an appointment now.

5 Reasons You Need More Sun, According to Science

5 Reasons You Need More Sun, According to Science

At this point, the recommendations on sunlight exposure sound more like advice for newly-fledged vampires; avoid it at all costs, or perish. But while it’s true that the UV rays are harmful without the right protection, it turns out that underexposure to the sun carries significant health risks similar to smoking, obesity, and being sedentary! Research shows that catching some unfiltered rays, in moderation, can be beneficial for you.

To find out how catching rays can improve your life and health, continue reading.

#1 – Lifts mood

Sunlight triggers the release of serotonin and endorphins – hormones associated with happier mood, less depression, and overall feelings of calmness.

#2 – Gives you a deeper sleep

In addition to the increase in serotonin levels, getting sun exposure during the day can also put you on track for more effective production of melatonin – the hormone that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle. After you’ve had your share of sun rays during the day, your body becomes more efficient at recognizing when it’s time to head to bed.

So, if you’re someone who remains awake at 3 am, tossing and turning, you might want to consider heading out for some sunlight.

#3 – Lowers blood pressure
When your skin is exposed to sunlight, your body releases a compound known as nitric oxide into the blood vessels. This process brings your blood pressure levels down, lowering your risks for suffering from cardiovascular diseases, such as heart attack and stroke.

#4 – Ramps up production of vitamin D
As you probably already know by now, your skin produces vitamin D – also known as the sunshine vitamin – when exposed to the sun. In addition to regulating mood, vitamin D also plays crucial roles in several bodily functions. Here are three reasons you should care about getting enough vitamin D:

  • Keeps your hair healthy – Research shows that vitamin D is only found in the follicles of healthy hair; it’s absent in non-healthy hair. Therefore, this suggests that if you want your locks to look healthy and grow strong, you need to get sufficient vitamin D.
  • Strengthens your teeth and bones – Vitamin D enables the absorption of calcium and phosphorus in your gut. These are the two minerals that are essential for maintaining strong and healthy teeth and bones.
  • Protects your skin – Studies show that not only can vitamin D help protect the skin from the sun’s damaging effects, but it can also keep inflammation under control, help with cell renewal, and tissue repair.

However, if you’re unable to get exposure to sunlight for any reason, like you’re a shift worker, for example, you can consider getting yourself some vitamin D supplements to meet your needs.

#5 – Reduces risk for some cancers

While sunlight brings elevated chances of skin cancer, many studies have shown associations between sunlight exposure and lower risks of colorectal, prostate, and breast cancer, in addition to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. It’s believed that the production of vitamin D is responsible for these cancer-protective effects.

Macronutrients Vs. Micronutrients: What You Need To Know For A Successful Diet

Macronutrients Vs. Micronutrients: What You Need To Know For A Successful Diet

Once upon a time, all dieters cared about were calories. But as nutritional knowledge grew, people – thankfully – started paying more attention to the composition of their meals, instead of their total caloric intake. By now, you must know that eating 100 calories of vegetables will be much ‘healthier’ in comparison to eating, let’s say, 100 calories of chocolate cake. Why, though?

In this article, find out what micronutrients and macronutrients are so that you can make wiser food choices.

Macronutrients

As implied by its name, macronutrients are the nutrients that your body needs in large amounts for proper functioning; they are what constitute the calories you eat and are primarily responsible for generating the energy you need.

What types of macronutrients are there, exactly?

Macronutrients can be broken down into the following categories:

  1. Carbohydrates are found in foods like grains, fruits, vegetables, and beans. Their primary function is to supply your body with energy.
  2. Proteins are present in meat, dairy, eggs, tofu, and legumes. In addition to helping your body repair and build muscles, skin, and organs, protein also aids in hormonal production.
  3. Fats are found in foods like olive oil, seeds, avocados, and nuts; they are typically stored in your body and used as a backup fuel. They also help protect and insulate your organs and bones.

Micronutrients

Accordingly, micronutrients are the nutrients that your body needs in minuscule amounts – think of these as the ‘magic wands’ that help your body digest the various macronutrients, and stay healthy. You need to obtain your micronutrients from the food you eat because, for the most part, your body is unable to produce vitamins and minerals.

What types of micronutrients are there, exactly?

They typically fall into the following categories:

  1. Water-soluble vitamins – These vitamins dissolve in water, are not easily stored in your body, and get flushed out with urine when you consume them in excess. Here are three examples of water-soluble vitamins, along with some of their functions:
    1. Vitamin B1 helps convert nutrients into energy.
    2. Biotin plays a role in the metabolism of fatty acids, amino acids, and glucose.
    3. Folic acid aids in proper cell division.
  2. Fat-soluble vitamins – These vitamins are best absorbed when consumed with a source of fat; they’re typically stored in your liver and fatty tissues for future use.
    1. Vitamin A is necessary for proper vision and organ function.
    2. Vitamin D promotes proper immune function.
    3. Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant that protects your cells from damage.
  3. Macrominerals – Your body needs, and stores, reasonably large amounts of these essential minerals.
    1. Calcium is necessary for proper function and structure of bones and teeth.
    2. Potassium helps with muscle function.
    3. Magnesium assists with over 300 enzyme reactions.
  4. Trace minerals – No less critical to your body’s functioning than macrominerals, trace minerals are just needed in smaller amounts.
    1. Iron helps provide oxygen to your muscles.
    2. Copper is required for the formation of connective tissue.
    3. Zinc is necessary for healthy growth, immune function, and wound healing.

Ultimately, the best way to ensure that you’re providing your body with the necessary amounts of macro- and micronutrients is to eat a variety of foods. You should also try to steer clear of high-fat processed foods – these are typically low on micronutrients.

Green Coffee Bean Extract – Can It Help You Lose Weight?

Green Coffee Bean Extract – Can It Help You Lose Weight?

Losing weight can be incredibly difficult. When you’re desperately trying to fit into the jeans you wore back in college, any form of help – most notably, supplements – is welcome. Somewhere along your weight-loss journey, you may have heard about green coffee extract; a supplement promoted as an effortless way to shed pounds. Expectedly, you’re skeptical of its touted benefits – does it work? And, most crucially, where’s the proof? Well, continue reading for the answers to your questions!

What is green coffee extract?

Green coffee is raw coffee beans. These unroasted beans are soaked and then concentrated for the extraction of all the different components present within to create the green coffee bean extract.

Why can’t I just drink coffee instead?

You may be surprised, but untreated green coffee beans contain lots of beneficial compounds, such as chlorogenic acid, which exerts an antioxidant effect on the body. According to research, this particular compound is thought to block fat accumulation, curb carb absorption, and boost weight loss!

When coffee beans are roasted to create the characteristic aroma coffee lovers crave, their concentration of chlorogenic acid falls – reducing its capability to help you shed the weight! Also, while made from the same beans, the green coffee extract does not smell nor taste like coffee, a supposed benefit for those who’re not big fans of the espresso, for example.

Does it work for weight loss?

Well, based on current scientific research, yes. According to a review of studies published in Gastroenterology Research and Practice, the green coffee extract was shown to be significantly more effective than a placebo in lowering body weight.

Adding to the evidence is a 2013 review of studies published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Integrative Medicine: researchers reported that the subjects lost between 1 – 8 kilograms of body weight as a result of green coffee extract!

How can I try out green coffee extract?

Now that you’re convinced on the weight-loss benefits of green coffee extract, you must be raring to get your hands on some. Well, here’s how you can enjoy your green coffee drink:

Make it yourself
Depending on your location, green coffee beans can be found in many natural food stores and some grocery stores. Once you’ve got yourself a pack of raw beans, go ahead and grind 50 grams in a coffee grinder. Do note that the beans will not grind easily, so it’s normal for large chunks to remain.

Simmer the ground beans in 350 ml of water for 15 minutes, and let it steep for an hour before straining. Voila – you have your green coffee drink!

Get a green coffee bean extract supplement
Understandably, you might not want to go through all that hassle to make it yourself. Thankfully, you can opt for convenient coffee bean extract supplements in the form of tablets or powder that you can easily pop or add into your food.

Just a word of caution: due to the nature of the supplement market, there is no standardization in the amount of green coffee bean extract, so be sure to choose a reliable supplement provider known to manufacture high-quality products.

How To Win The Weight Battle During Menopause

How To Win The Weight Battle During Menopause

As you hit your menopausal years (mid-to-late 40s), you may notice that besides battling the occasional hot flash, your favourite pair of jeans are also starting to feel noticeably more sung – particularly around the waist. You’re not alone. Many studies have found that due to hormonal changes, menopausal women are more likely to put on weight and have larger midsections than women who have not gone through menopause.

But here’s good news: weight gain while you’re going through the big ‘M’ isn’t inevitable. Here, we cover the four lifestyle changes you can adopt to help you reverse the scale’s upward spiral.

#1 – Crank your activity level up

If you’re sedentary, increasing your physical activity level will not only help you shed pounds but will also relieve annoying menopausal symptoms, like headaches! If you’re already active, you should consider cranking things up a notch.

The best way for you to do this is to do high-intensity interval training (HIIT), where you alternate brief periods of intense (all-out) physical exertion with more relaxed recovery periods. If HIIT sounds intimidating, don’t worry – you honestly don’t have to do a lot. It can be a matter of choosing to take the stairs instead of the elevator, and picking up the climbing pace every level or so.

#2 – Add in resistance training

Also, as you go through menopause, you naturally lose muscle mass – this lowers your resting metabolism, meaning you burn fewer calories daily. To reverse this metabolism-wrecking muscle loss, you have to start adding strength-building exercises into your workouts.

If you’re not a big fan of pumping iron, however, consider yoga; it has the same kind of weight-bearing benefits as lifting weights. To aid in quicker post-workout recovery, you can also supplement with amino complex – this helps your body repair broken-down muscles. Fish oil supplementation can also help reduce any muscle or joint inflammation you have.

#3 – Watch what goes onto your plate

To keep your weight gain in control, you need to be extra diligent about following a healthy diet. Whenever possible, you should avoid fad diets (like the lemon detox diet and the cabbage soup diet) that promise rapid weight loss; they’re not sustainable over the long-term.

Instead, you should make reasonable diet changes you can keep up for the rest of your life, such as cutting down on your fat intake. In general, due to the high-calorie density of fats, menopausal women are recommended to keep their fat consumption between 20 – 25% of their daily calorie intake. And it’s not just that: you should also strive to include more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables in your diet. Avoid deep-fried, overly-processed foods that are low in nutritional value.

#4 – Get enough shut-eye
Don’t forget to catch enough Zzz’s every night. Lack of sleep causes your hunger hormones to go haywire: it increases the level of ghrelin, a hormone which stimulates your appetite and lowers leptin, which suppresses appetite. As a result, you’ll want to eat more – causing your body to deposit the excess fat around your midsection!

If you’re facing difficulties falling asleep at night, practice good sleep habits: stop using electronic screens at least an hour before bedtime, go to bed and get up on the same schedule daily, and ensure a restful sleep environment. You can also try supplementing with melatonin, or magnesium, to regulate your natural sleep-wake cycle.

Why Sleep Is Crucial For Muscle Recovery And Growth

Why Sleep Is Crucial For Muscle Recovery And Growth

In pursuit of the perfect body, you pay a lot of attention to your training routine, diet, and pre-workout supplement stack. Granted, these are all crucial to effective muscle-building, but you might have neglected another aspect of your training regime that plays just as significant a part – recovery. Or, more specifically, muscle recovery through quality sleep.

In this article, find out why you shouldn’t skimp on sleep, and how you can enhance your sleep quality (and muscle growth) by following five simple lifestyle tips.

Poor sleep, poor recovery
Strenuous exercise, much like your workout sessions, can cause microscopic tears in your muscles. And that’s where the human growth hormone (HGH), responsible for the repair and rebuilding of muscle tissues, comes in.

As it happens, 75% of the hormone’s production takes place during (yes, you guessed it) deep sleep. So, if you don’t sleep enough, your body is not able to produce enough HGH to promote healing – highlighting the importance of sleep for muscle growth and recovery.

How much sleep do I need?
As you can see, catching enough Z’s at night is necessary for optimal recovery. But – how much sleep do you need on a nightly basis? While there are individual variations, the National Sleep Foundation recommends for adults to get between 7 – 9 hours of shuteye per night. Now, if you’re someone who spends more time trying to fall asleep than sleep, you must be gasping at this number.

Don’t worry; here are five tips you can follow to flip the switch and guide your body into a peaceful, muscle-building slumber.

Tips for proper rest

  • Unplug devices – It’s always a good idea to switch off all electronics about an hour (or more) before getting into bed. Getting rid of stimulation – like television, computer screens, and loud music – helps your mind power down and relax.
  • Keep it dark – To help set the right environment for sleep, consider using light-tight blinds, shades, and window coverings. All light sources can interfere with a solid night’s sleep, so it’s best to keep them to a minimum.
  • Maintain a regular sleep schedule – Ideally, you should go to bed and wake up at the same time, every day. A regular sleeping schedule helps regulate your body’s circadian rhythm and reduces the amount of time you take to fall asleep.
  • No intense activity before bed – Many people report feeling too energized and alert from exercising just before bed. You should, therefore, allow for at least 6 hours between your exercise session and bedtime to prevent any sleep disruptions.
  • Consider supplements – If you’re still having difficulties falling asleep, you can try supplementing with the following:
    • Melatonin – The hormone melatonin plays a role in your natural sleep-wake cycle. Research shows that melatonin supplements can help treat sleeping disorders, such as delayed sleep phase, and improve the quality of your sleep.
    • Magnesium – Magnesium regulates the hormone melatonin, which, as mentioned above, guides sleep-wake cycles in your body. It also helps activate the neurotransmitters that are responsible for calming the body and the mind. Oral magnesium supplementation can, therefore, promote better sleep.
Kickstart Your Post-Workout Recovery – Here’s How

Kickstart Your Post-Workout Recovery – Here’s How

After having put your body through a significant amount of stress during a gruelling workout session, you have to give it time to recover, repair, and ultimately – come back stronger. Recovery must occur before progress can be made. Always. If you don’t recover, you’re just breaking your muscle tissues down, over and over again. Failing to recover can lead to symptoms of overtraining like poor sleep, decreased performance, and elevated blood pressure.

Adopt these five tips to benefit more from the workouts you already do and recover like a champ.

Get more sleep

Good sleep plays a vital role in our recovery from exercise. During deep sleep, your body releases a pulse of human growth hormone (HGH) to help with muscle tissue repair and growth. If you don’t get enough sleep, your recovery is going to suffer – your broken-down muscles are not going to heal properly.

Have some protein before bed

Your body requires plenty of amino acids, the building blocks of protein, to rebuild your muscle tissues during sleep. You should, therefore, consume an ample amount of protein before bed – this enables you to take full advantage of your spike in growth hormone during sleep for maximal muscle repair. Protein-rich foods include lean meat, eggs, and dairy products like milk, yogurt, and cheese. However, if the idea of going to bed full turns you off, you can always consider taking amino acid supplements right before bed.

Stay hydrated

When you sweat during exercise, you lose a lot of fluids. The resulting imbalance of fluid and electrolytes in your cells can affect your muscles’ ability to function and recover. So, to ensure optimal recovery post-workout, pay attention to your thirst levels and rehydrate as necessary. How much to drink, though? Well, you should let your body be your guide. You’ll know that you’re sufficiently hydrated when your urine is light yellow and clear enough that you could read a newspaper through it.

Try anti-inflammatories

Research shows that anti-inflammatory medications (drugs like ibuprofen and aspirin) can speed muscle recovery and reduce soreness – at least in the short term. Just one thing to note, though, high doses of NSAIDs (Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs) may hinder your ability to increase muscle strength, so you might not want to depend on them for extended periods. What you could do, instead, is to consider natural anti-inflammatories like turmeric and willow bark. They’d achieve the same results, without the mentioned adverse side effect.

Take a probiotic

Wait – probiotics can help post-workout recovery? Indeed. The healthy bacteria in your gut, in addition to keeping your digestive system healthy, also aids with the proper functioning of your immune system. When your immune system isn’t functioning at 100%, you’ll find it incredibly challenging to recover from tough workouts. To support the health of your immune system, you should increase your body’s probiotic levels. Don’t worry if you’re not a big fan of yoghurt or kimchi. You can always pick up a quality probiotic supplement, and you’ll be all set.

Your Pre-Workout Meal: What And When To Eat

Your Pre-Workout Meal: What And When To Eat

Figuring out what to eat before a workout, so you have sufficient energy – yet not feel like puking your stomach’s content – during the session can be challenging. But being thoughtful about what you put in your mouth before exercise helps you maximize the benefits of all your hard work in the gym, so it’s definitely worth the hassle. So, what’s the best pre-workout meal? And when should you eat it? Get the answers to your questions below.

What to eat before a workout

Carbohydrates
When you eat carbs, your body breaks them down into glucose, and your muscles then store them as glycogen. During exercise, your muscles dip into these glycogen reserves for energy. Eating carbs right before you exercise, therefore, ensures that you’ll have extra glucose on hand to replenish those glycogen stores. It’s vital that you do so because if you’re strapped for glucose when working out hard, you’ll likely feel tired and weak, and will be tempted to call it quits.

Protein
It’s always a good idea to consume a little bit of protein before your workout, especially if you’re doing resistance training. That’s because when you lift weights, you create microscopic tears in your muscle fibres. For your body to repair and rebuild those micro-tears, it’d need protein. Be sure not to overeat protein, though, because you might get a stomach upset – it’s significantly more satiating than carbohydrates.

Fats
While carbs are the go-to source of energy for short and high-intensity bouts of exercise, fat is the source of fuel for more extended and low-to-moderate intensity exercise. On days where you’re doing endurance training, you’d, therefore, do well on a pre-workout meal that’s slightly higher in fat content.

Supplements
To further enhance your exercise performance, you can also experiment with the following pre-workout supplements:

Timing is key

To get the most of your workout, you should try to eat a meal consisting of all three macros (carbs, protein, and fat) 2 – 4 hours before you get to the gym. But of course, it isn’t always possible for you to have the time – nor the appetite – to eat before a workout. Here’s how you can make the best of the timeframe you do have:

  • Two or more hours before – Eat all macros.
    • Choose complex carbs such as whole grains, legumes, or quinoa.
    • Include lean protein like chicken breast, fish, or tofu.
    • Add some fat like almond butter, avocado, nuts, or seeds.
    • 1 – 2 hours before – Carbs and protein, with minimal fat
      • Choose complex carbs such as whole grains, oats, or fresh fruits.
      • Combine with protein like cottage cheese, tuna, or a hard-boiled egg.
      • Limit fat. Have a couple of nuts or seeds.
    • 30 – 60 minutes before – Carbs and a little bit of protein
      • Choose easily-digestible carbs found in fruits like apples, grapes, or mango.
      • Combine with protein like non-fat Greek yoghurt or milk.
Post-partum Nutrition Tips: How To Eat After Giving Birth

Post-partum Nutrition Tips: How To Eat After Giving Birth

After nine excruciating months of going without sushi and red wine, you’re likely more than excited to indulge in all of your favourite foods once again. But your body has been through so much over the past months; you grew a human within yourself!

That and the fact that you’re still physically recovering from labour means that you need to ensure you’re getting the nutrients you need to nourish your body. In this article, find out how you should eat during the post-partum recovery period – especially if you’re breastfeeding.

#1 – Don’t diet

While you may be keen to lose all the weight you gained during pregnancy immediately after giving birth through dieting, you shouldn’t. As a new mom, you need to take it slow with weight loss, allow your body to bounce back from labour and delivery, and balance your meals with a mix of legumes, grains, vegetables, and fruits.

Plus, if you’re breastfeeding, your baby will take calories and nutrients before you will. And that means you’d need an extra 500 calories daily to keep both your milk supply and energy up.

#2 – Eat a protein-rich diet

Protein is your body’s building blocks for enzymes, hormones, and body tissue. After having supported your baby’s growth for nine, long months and producing protein-rich breast milk, you need to replenish your reserve of protein. Typically, you’d need a total of 70 to 80 grams of protein per day. Be sure to include good sources of protein, such as milk, yoghurt, and lean beef, in your diet.

By the way – if you didn’t already know, protein is made up of amino acids. So, if you’re unable to stomach so much protein daily, you can consider using amino acid supplements to meet the recommended intake.

#3 – Incorporate healthy fats

Healthy fats, which you can find in avocados, fatty fish, nut butter, and nuts, are excellent additions to a well-rounded meal. Not only do fats enhance the flavour of your meals, but they are also highly satiating – which will help prevent unwanted bingeing episodes in the middle of the night. It’s also worth mentioning that omega-3 fatty acidss may decrease the incidence of postpartum depression!

#4 – Continue taking your prenatal supplements

Don’t stop taking your prenatal supplements just because you’ve given birth! As a new mom, your body has particular nutritional needs. Vitamins A, C and D, along with iron, calcium, and magnesium, are all nutrients to pack in your daily meals.

But with a new baby to nurse and take care of, it can be challenging to cover all your bases nutritionally. In such occasions, prenatal supplements are the assurance you need that you’re still getting all the nutrients you need, even if your diet is somewhat lacking.

#5 – Consume lots of fibre

Constipation is never enjoyable. To keep things moving along in the toilet so you can spend more time with your baby, you need to eat lots of fibre. It helps your body hold on to water, which softens stool and makes it easier for you to pass it out. You know, just in case you were wondering. So, fibre-rich foods you should reach for include leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, legumes, and oatmeal.