I am fascinated with how to have healthy pregnancy and children. When can you most impact the health of your child and pregnancy? The answer is before you get pregnant. There is a foundation of health that you pass on your baby that can only be done before pregnancy. Your baby will be created from a sperm and egg that reflect the health of your bodies especially in the 5 months before you get pregnant. So what do you need to do to lay down a healthy foundation for your baby?
Unexplained infertility accounts for 25% of infertility cases. In these cases there is not an obvious reason why a woman cannot get pregnant and stay pregnant. One area that is often overlooked is hidden pathogens like viruses.
News Flash! Premenstrual Syndrome is your body communicating that something is not right and needs to change. PMS should not be normal, though it is very common. What should be normal is to come up to menstruation about 27-30 days after starting it last time without even realizing we are going to start and have an easy bright red flow of 3-5 days. Anything else is not normal and is our body communicating that our hormones are out of balance. Be encouraged. We can interpret what the body is telling us and over time help our cycle to be normal.
There are trends in health care. Some are beneficial and some are not. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all babies be give vitamin D drops. My initial reaction is breastmilk is the perfect food and babies don’t need anything else! But let us be honest, we live in a malnourished culture with processed food and poor guts and we want to give our kids the absolute best. So I decided to look closer into giving vitamin D to babies.
Simply put, having the mthfr mutation could be the cause of recurrent miscarriages and a whole host of other problems.
We have the genes we have ---- that does not change ---- but the good news is we do not treat genes, we support methylation pathways. If methylation is working well we are good and if it is not we are prone to the issues mentioned above. So how do we support methylation?
As an introduction to myself and to Vibrant Health and Healing. I want to tell a bit of my story concerning functional health and why I do what I do. I am a licensed midwife and love midwifery. I love working with families and being able to speak into people’s lives at such an important time of transition and joy. My favorite part of midwifery is…most people guess the babies, but actually it is the moms. I love helping to solve problems and figure out answers. At the moment I'm not even delivering babies. You might ask why when I love it and the answer has to do with what I'm doing now and why I believe in Functional Health.
My journey into functional health started with my own health. Along with loving my job as a midwife, I love to travel and love adventure. In December of 2013 I combined these three and accepted an invitation to work at a birth center in Tacobon, Philippines for a couple of weeks. I was part of a disaster relief team after Typhoon Yolanda. While there, though I did not know it at the time, I picked up a parasite that proceeded to destroy my intestinal lining and my health. In January I jumped back into working at a busy midwifery practice. Soon I was thinking “I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I am so fatigued. I just have to make it to the end of May and vacation.” My mom says I don't know how to not be in school, so in May I started a functional nutrition course. I did not know it, but this was setting me up to help myself with my own journey. With summer, my health continued to deteriorate, to where by August my body ached all over constantly, I got my first migraine headache, and I was so fatigued all the time all I wanted was to lay on the couch and cry. Even though I was exhausted I constantly woke up in the middle of the night and could not sleep. I was eating great-- no sugar and no grains and still continued to feel worse. I was about to start an internship as well as still doing midwifery and all I wanted was to go home to my mom and cry! I told my mom, “I don’t want to die, but I cannot live like this.” Because I believe that health is holistic, spirit, soul and body I believe God heard my cry and answered me in what I was already learning about functional health. I used some of the labs and discovered the culprit, a parasite, which destroyed my mucosal lining, wrecked my adrenals and caused a whole host of issues. I also consulted with an amazing natural doctor who helped guide me, along with my course, using detoxing and nutrition to heal my body. It was not overnight but it was progressive.
We are told health is about eating good and exercise and I say that is important but often health is determined by underlying factors that are causing stress in our body. We need to dig deeper and find the root. If I had not done this I would have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue and medicated and likely still be sick today.
When I first learned about functional nutrition I went wow that is what I do as a midwife only on a much broader scale. It is being a health detective and helping people solve their health issues by finding the underlying problem and empowering them to fix it with nutrition and lifestyle. So today I get to help dig deeper into fertility issues and digestive issues and find the root of what is going on so the body can function the way is was designed to.
If any of this resonates with you and you want to look deeper into your health please make an introductory appointment with me. Especially if you are wanting to get pregnant or are pregnant and want more nutrition and preventative care.
When it comes to conception the value of a good egg is priceless. Yet we women woman all too often take for granted that our eggs will be there for us when we need them to give us the most precious gift possible -- a baby.
During women’s reproductive years we use menstrual products monthly for from 3 to 7 days. Rarely do women think about the consequences of what is in their menstrual products. Both tampons and plastic pads have toxins.
Miscarriage is a common occurrence with as high as 20% of all pregnancies ending in the first 20 weeks. Although accepted as common, miscarriage is not normal and though not always preventable there are many ways to support the body to make it less likely. The best time to prevent a miscarriage is before pregnancy.
I am constantly searching for effective yet natural remedies to help prevent and heal sickness. The best medicine is food and environment.
Influenza is normal part of our winters from November to March and we do not think of people dying of it unless they are old or already immune compromised. But we do think of being miserable from it.
If you are actively trying to get pregnant or maybe you are thinking in a year or so I would want to get pregnant right now is the perfect time to do a fertility cleanse. A Fertility cleanse supports the body's own detoxification abilities to help you support reproductive health.
A few years ago I read the book Children of Dreams, Children of Hope by Raymound Veras, M.D. It is the true story of how Dr. Veras developed a therapy to treat children with Down syndrome and heal them so they are functioning and performing mentally and physically in the same way that everyone else does. Wait you say Down syndrome is a chromosomal abnormality how can that be healed?
If you asked me what makes the biggest difference in pregnancy for the health of the mom and baby I would say NUTRITION. Yet, this is not a priority for most care providers. So many times I have heard women say their care provider said, ”It does not matter what you eat as long as you eat enough”. There is great confusion over what is nutrition, what actually provides health to the body.
If you struggle with heartburn on a regular basis, changing your diet to better support digestion, taking a couple supplements to support digestion, and digging deeper into its cause by testing for H.Pylori are all musts. The answer is more stomach acid not less.
Safe Ways to Balance Emotions in Pregnancy
As a midwife, I often get questions about what is safe to take in pregnancy, especially when women are feeling more emotional. If you are struggling to feel happy and upbeat, first, I want you to understand this can be normal. Your body is going through a lot of changes and you are preparing for one of the largest changes you will have in your life. Even if not a first baby, adding another baby, though a wonderful gift, is a huge stress. Here are some practical, safe-for-pregnancy ideas.
Diet and Lifestyle are Key
- Stay hydrated. This seems simple, but it is huge for your emotions and for your blood expansion and hormones. Drink throughout the day, not a bunch all at once. Aim for 2 to 3 quarts of water or herbal tea.
- Cut back on sugars and refined carbohydrates as they are depressants. Which means they cause us to feel depressed!
- Increase fresh and raw vegetables and fruit.
- Juice fresh vegetable and fruit juice so you get the live enzymes. Make it fresh, not bought in the store, which is basically just sugar. Live enzymes do so much for our bodies health and sense of wellbeing.
- Make sure to keep your blood sugar balanced by snacking throughout the day. This can be so hard to remember, but eating every 2 hours could be the difference between grumpy you and happy you. If you feel your emotions are connected to blood sugar crashing which is common in pregnancy consider taking Cataplex GTF to help balance your blood sugars. Get it here
- Get some exercise. Exercise boosts your emotions, and you need exercise to prepare for labor. Aim for 20 min 4 times a week.
- Have someone to talk to and process with. Your emotions are real, but you are in charge, not them.
- If at all possible, get outside in the sun every day. Especially first thing in the morning.
- If you live in a part of the country that does not get much sun, I strongly suggest getting a sun lamp. Here is one on Amazon
Supplements Can Help
- MinChex is a product from Standard Process which contains minerals, including iodine. It can be amazing at regulating moods. It is whole food and completely safe in pregnancy, just like eating foods. I recommend you take between 3 and nine a day.
- BHI Calming is a homeopathic. It is amazing. It is like taking happiness. You put it under your tongue and you will start to feel better almost immediately. It is safe to use in pregnancy and with other medicines. There is no risks of overdose, and it is non-addictive. I recommend taking it as needed. Guys can take them also.
- Increasing your B vitamins can boost your emotions and so can increasing your calcium intake. Make sure you are taking a whole food sourced B and I recommend taking an active form of folate. See my Blog: Please Don't Take Folic Acid
- Increasing your calcium can be amazing support for your emotions. Calcium helps your nerve impulses and calms you.
You can get any of these from my pregnancy resource page here.
- If you are in your third trimester I recommend drinking red raspberry leaf tea by the gallon. Seriously. It helps to balance hormones and contains calcium and iron to prepare the body for labor. It is best if you buy it in bulk and brew it yourself. You can drink it hot or cold. Just drink it. I don’t recommend it in the first trimester, but it is safe starting in the second trimester.
One More Thought
Have your doctor check your hemoglobin and if it is under 12 take Blood Builder by Mega Foods. Low iron can cause you to be exhausted and emotional. Also do yourself a favor and get it up there before labor. You will have a better labor and smoother postpartum.
For more pregnancy thoughts on thriving both physically and emotionally in pregnancy, please make a appointment with me. I do phone and online consultation with people all over.
Picture in this post are copyright under Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license
During pregnancy women want to be even more careful what they take so certain drugs are out. I want to dig a bit deeper into why you may not be sleeping and what you can do to help it even during pregnancy.
The bottom line is if you take folic acid and have a mthfr gene mutation or your cell receptors are blocked because of too much folic acid you are at higher risk for infertility issues, recurrent pregnancy loss, preeclampsia, a child with Down syndrome or autism, postpartum depression or chronic depression, and elevated homocysteine levels.
1 in 5 women have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) but few realize it and even fewer know they can heal their body naturally. Metabolic Chaos is a term coined by Reed Davis of Functional Diagnostic Nutrition. He explains that it exists because of hidden complexities in a person's metabolism and unappreciated influences from their environment. So the key is to find the cause of stress in the body that is affecting the hormones and help reverse it. We have two great keys with PCOS.
Polycystic Ovary Syndromn (PCOS) affects 20% of women, yet as many as 70% of women with PCOS will not be diagnosed until later in life. It is as mysterious as health issues come, without specific symptoms or a specific way to diagnose it.