First Trimester Tips
I found out I was pregnant on Broncos Superbowl 50 Championship. When I saw the word PREGNANT, I basically could only lay on the floor for an hour to process! haha
It has been an amazing journey, and I am so grateful I had been following a fertility diet leading up to the pregnancy to build up my nutrient stores.
To start, read my first article on fertility diet and supplements that explains a recipe for a super baby, supplements, what to focus on etc.
At the beginning, everything was normal in the eating area. Around week 6, I started needing to eat everything couple of hours or I would start to feel nauseous. This was a change for me because I was used to eating 3 big meals with usually no snacks.
Weeks 6-10 are the weeks I felt not myself. Not terrible, but not having a normal appetite, and at moments, not feeling well.
We went to Mexico around week 6, and in that trip is when the nausea came around, and my eating needed to change. There were a few days in weeks 7/8 where I definitely did not feel well and needed to rest.
Natural Solutions for Morning Sickness and Nausea
These are the solutions and first trimester tips I found most helpful for nasea:
- Foods like goat kefir and yogurt, Plantain bread, liver (I know super weird!)
- Eating protein first thing in the morning and every couple of hours
- Coconut water
- Peppermint Essential Oil: I would inhale it or rub it behind my ears for relief
- Walking and fresh air
- Eating small every couple of hours with protein and healthy fat
Weeks 7-10 it was harder to eat vegetables.
I ate mostly my normal diet:
- Greens and veggies (what I could)
- Organic grass fed meats: deer, beef, buffalo, lamb,
- Organic Poultry: chicken, turkey
- Fruits: apples, pears, lemon, grapefruit, berries
- Starchy veggies: sweet potatoes, plantains, squash
- Soaked grains: quinoa, millet
- Pasture raised eggs
- Wild-caught fish: Salmon and sardines
A few of the foods that I found myself eating often were eggs, avocado, goats milk kefir, sweet potato and plantain chips, avocado oil mayo and nut butters, coconut oil, tahini, liver, and sprouted seeded crackers.
For breakfast, smoothies were harder than usual, but I found a fermented protein powder I really loved and mixed it with greens, coconut flakes, hemp seeds, berries, coconut oil, and sometimes other veggies like cucumber or zucchini- and I usually had that for breakfast.
Surprisingly, I lost all cravings for chocolate and sugar!
I truly recommend the Weston A. Price “Diet for Pregnant and Nursing Woman”. It gives you a good idea of how much and what kinds of foods to eat to ensure you are getting all of the critical nutrients needed for brain, bone, and complete healthy development.
I walked 30-60 minutes almost every day. Did my normal workouts, but not pushing myself hard. I did more lifting rather than HIIT workouts.
- Weights 2-3 times a week
- Body weight interval work outs 1-2 times a week
- Yoga/pilates and core work 2 days a week
- Daily stretching and hip circles!
I would get tired in the afternoons- some days worse than others. I took naps just a handful of times. It was definitely harder to have the energy to work out, but taking it slowly and just getting started helped out!
Those few weeks where I did not feel well or like myself were not fun. I was very frustrated and disappointed because I thought I would feel much better (mentally and physically). In those weeks, time went so slow, and it began to feel like I was going to feel this way forever. Thank goodness around 11/12 weeks I started feeling normal, could eat normal, and had more energy!
This time also felt surreal because I was not showing and did not even go to the midwife to hear the heartbeat until week 13! I was excited, yet everything felt like it was so far off.
Superfoods for First Trimester
Make sure to read the 6 pregnancy superfoods as those apply as well!
According to Dr. Weston A. Price, Functional Medicines Doctor Chris Kresser, Clinical Nutritionist Christa Orechea and the amazing books and research they have written, below are their researched recommendations for first trimester needs:
The baby’s heart, brain, nervous system, and liver all begin to form during this time! The following nutrients are critical for this stage of development:
Folate: Closes the neural tube which is the embryo’s precursor to the central nervous system (brain and spine) Folate=healthy nervous system.
- You want to get the most ABSORBABLE form of folate possible. This is NOT folic acid. In a supplement you want to look for folate or the activated form of folate which is called L-methylfolate (5-MTHF). A large population of woman do not absorb folate well and need the activated form.
- The best folate-rich foods are liver, asparagus, lentils, and avocado.
Protein: The human building block for arteries, veins, skin, hair, and our hearts, brains, livers, kidneys, and lungs are made of tissue made up of proteins. Proteins=building the babies body.
- Increase your protein intake at each meal.
Omega-3 fatty acids (EPA/DHA): Incredibly important in forming the baby’s brain and reducing inflammation. A study done by Obstetrics and Gynecology found that mothers that did not consume any seafood when pregnant had children who were at greater risk of being in the lowest 25 percent of testing for both verbal and performance IQ. They also had more behavioral problems, lower scores on developmental tsts, and communication skills. EPA/DHA=healthy, smart brain and healthy skin for baby.
- You want to be very careful and very picky with the fish oil you consume as most oils on the market are rancid. You want to look for a professional therapeutic grade fish oil that was processed correctly.
- Wild caught salmon, sardines, flax and chia.
Celtic or Himalayan Sea Salt: Salt is key during pregnancy because it helps create amniotic fluid for the baby and provides trace minerals for the mother. All 84 essential trace minerals your body needs are found in Celtic and Himalayan pink salt. A craving for salt is a craving for minerals.
Calcium/magnesium/D3 combination: Calcium forms baby’s teeth and bones. Magnesium stimulates the hormone that allows your body to accept calcium. Magnesium is the miracle mineral. It is responsible for over 300 chemical reactions in the body. It calms the nervous system, improves sleep and digestion, and helps balance hormones. Vitamin D3 transports the calcium to the bones. Vitamin D3 is critical for a healthy immune system, energy, and hormonal system.
- Get magnesium by soaking in an Epsom salt bath or using magnesium oil for the most absorbable and effective use. A good liquid mineral supplement can also contain good magnesium. If you take magnesium as a pill, take magnesium glycinate (most absorbable form of magnesium).
- The best sources of calcium are from sesame seeds, butter oil, leafy greens, and almonds.
- The best place to get D3 is from the sun (20 minutes a day) but take a liquid D3 K2 supplement is the next best option. Cod liver oil, egg yolks, and raw dairy are also sources of vitamin D3.
Iron: Helps muscles store oxygen, boost cellular energy, and carries oxygen from lungs throughout body.
- One of the most absorbable forms of iron is found in liver.
- Alfalfa black strap molasses are other options.
Foods to Focus On
- liver – one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet
- mineral and micronutrient-rich leafy greens and veggies
- eggs: especially the yolks!
- healthy fats: avocado, brain octane oil, coconut products, coconut oil, butter, olive oil, olives
- protein smoothies
- sardines and salmon
- coconut milk latte
- sea salt
- bone broth
- raw goat dairy products if available
- other forms of protein
- This is not a food, but red vs blue light therapy is also so great for you and your growing baby!
- a therapeutic professional grade fish oil – for brain development and mental stability of the mother
- prenatal- either a whole foods form or professional therapeutic grade activated one (I did both) I like Thorne Prenatal or Synergy Prenatal
- Thorne Research VitD3k2
- probiotic liquids and pills – to maintain a healthy
- Synergy Pure Vitamin C Powder
- greens powers
- magnesium – I like Ancient Minerals magnesium oil, Calm magnesium drink, or liquid minerals
- Herbal tea: Red raspberry leaf every day!
- Collagen: for healthy skin, hair, and hormones!
What is Important In Pregnancy?
1. Gut Health: All Health Begins in the Gut
The gut and your digestion is the foundation of your whole body’s health.
- 80% of your immune system is located in the gut. Without a healthy gut, you can’t have a healthy immune system. Without a healthy immune system, you’re open to infections, inflammation, hormone imbalances and autoimmune disease.
- More serotonin(happy brain chemical) is produced in the gut than in the brain. Many causes of depression and anxiety are a result of gut issues.
- Your gut interacts with the outside world more than any other part of your body, taking in nutrients from food and keeping out bacteria, pathogens, and undigested food.
So many of the fertility and hormonal issues today are cause by leaky gut or intestinal permeability. This is when we have small holes in our digestive system that allow food and other unwanted toxins loose into our bloodstream.
In this day and age, almost all of us have some degree of leaky gut because of the water(chlorine, fluoride, antibiotics), food(GMOs, pesticides), and environmental toxins(heavy metals, parasites) we are exposed to.
This is why it is SO IMPORTANT to do that that help ur gut during pregancy and stop things that are damaging it.
2. A Healthy Microbiome:
Your microbiome are the millions of bacteria that make up your body. We need to make sure we have an abundance of healthy bacteria because they control everything:
- These bacteria detoxify your body
- They protect you from bad bacteria and viruses
- They absorb the nutrients that you are eating and create vitamins
- They are your body’s defense and energy system.
- The healthier your gut, the healthier your body, skin, mood, and life.
Your baby’s immune system is determined by YOUR MICROBIOME- if you want a healthy baby that does not get sick often, you need a healthy micribiome.
How to Take Care of Gut and Microbiome
- Remove inflammatory foods: sugar, gluten, vegetable oils, conventional meat and dairy.
- Consume an anti-inflammatory diet
- Avoid medications and antibiotics
- Consume probiotics and probiotic-rich foods