The most important part of feeding baby is feeding mammy.
There is increasing evidence that gut health directly influences generalhealth, emotional health and psychological well-being. The importance of establishing a healthy balance of the right bacteria for babies is being recognized and the opportunity to positively impact your lifetime health is now – in their earliest years.
It was once thought that babies were born with a sterile gut, waiting to be populated with all the friendly bacteria once born. However, research over the last few years has shown that in fact babies guts may actually start to be populated during pregnancy. It takes about 2 years for a baby’s gut flora to be fully established, and therefore it is vitally important that mum’s gut flora is as strong as possible, this is what gets passed to the breastfed baby.
So, how can we ensure that our little ones have the best start in life? Well, for me, the answer was to get myself sorted as a priority – Sunflower was getting her food crime after all. Throughout my breastfeeding period (coming up for 9 months soon!), I’ve avoided dairy products, wheat and gluten to start with. I the also discovered that I have a leaky gut (another post sometime!) and as such I cannot properly digest and tolerate grains or starchy vegetables. And if I cannot tolerate them, well sunflower cannot either.
So I’ve also cut out sugar (except the odd great now iPad again of a rich, expensive dark chocolate!), and started supplementing my diet with probiotics, digestive enzymes and homemade (lacto-fermented) sauerkraut. And the difference in both my health and Sunflowers reflux and wind has been remarkable, with a direct impact on her sleep, and mine.
We will continue in this fashion, nourishing and looking after mum for as long as needed because the way I see it, my next baba, if I’m going to be lucky enough, should get the best start I could possibly give, and therefore I must get myself as healthy as possibl, and the first step is seal the gut!