Top Tips to Overcome Challenges for New Mums

top tip for new mums

Becoming a parent is a big deal. Becoming a mum is even bigger. After 9 months of carrying a baby, you are now responsible for a small, helpless baby that relies on you for nourishment. The reality of this can be overwhelming.

Natural Support for Breastfeeding

For those that are breastfeeding, traditional plant medicine can be a valuable support. Galactagogic herbs such as Fennel and Aniseed support milk flow and milk quality. These herbs have been used for generations by medical herbalists. Raspberry leaf is also important as not only supports milk supply, but also uterine recovery, which is essential post childbirth.

When breastfeeding, it is important to hydrate regularly. Breast milk is predominantly made of water, so it is essential to stay hydrated. Taking herbs in a tea remedy gives you all the remedial benefits with a boost of hydration! Make up a flask or jug in the morning to set you up for the day – prepare according to the directions, then drink hot or cold.

Ensuring the right technique for breastfeeding is also important. Lactation consultants and midwives are specialists in this area and will be able to help with technique and positioning. Asking for help before issues arise may stop cracked, irritated nipples from becoming severe.

Aside from breastfeeding, there are many other challenges in the first 3 months with a newborn. In this period newborns are learning how to live outside of the womb. They slowly learn to self-settle, sleep alone and feed efficiently. However, this skill development takes time and can be frustrating for parents. Traditional plant medicine can support families in a multitude of ways throughout the fourth trimester and beyond.

Lack of Energy

All new parents are tired! With multiple wake ups throughout the night, both parents can feel fatigued. Taking energizing herbs like Sencha Green Tea with herbs that nourish your adrenal system is a balanced way to support stress and energy levels. Licorice is an adaptogenic herb, meaning it supports the adrenal glands and helps the body manage stress by modulating cortisol levels.

Adequate Iron Levels

Nettle is a medical herbalist’s favorite due to its high nutritional profile and provision of plant-based iron. In pregnancy, iron requirements double as the mother’s blood supply increases. Daily consumption of plant medicine like nettle may help to support healthy iron levels.

Impaired Immune Defences

New parents also need to take care of their immune system. When we are tired and stressed, immunity is one of the first things to suffer. Many parents find in the first year of parenting they fall ill more often. This could be attributed to a lack of sleep. Protecting your immunity can be as simple as including a formulation of herbs that boost your immunity. Thyme, Echinacea, Olive leaf, St. Mary’s Thistle, Sage and Angelica are great choices which support a healthy immune response. Good gut health is linked to good immunity so also consider a good quality, broad-spectrum probiotic.

Finding support where you can is essential as the first 3 months mark a huge step in the growth of your baby. Artemis products are suitable throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding, supporting your family through this special time.

Shop Artemis on our secure online store.

Always read the label and use as directed. If symptoms persist, see your healthcare professional. Artemis Ltd, Dunedin.
TAPS PP2708
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Detoxing with Plants

Detox tea support for detoxification

Detoxification is essential as it protects your health and improves your overall wellbeing. The term detox is often overused but, in this context, detox refers to the detoxification function that the liver and kidneys undergo each day as they process and flush everything that is eaten, drunk, absorbed or inhaled. This process happens naturally.

Traditional plant medicine has long been used to help support the liver, kidneys and digestive organs. Modern research shows that St Mary’s Thistle (Silybum marianum) can help support healthy liver function and help protect liver cells from harmful substances. It is used whenever alcohol, drug, poor diet or exposure to chemical pollution has comprised normal liver function.

Globe Artichoke is another plant that has an affinity with physiological detoxification and elimination, due to its bitter active constituents. The bitterness stimulates bile production, making it useful for supporting digestion, bowel regularity, bloating and queasy feelings.

Similarly, elimination of water soluble toxins via the kidneys is important – and this can be enhanced by Golden Rod (Solidago virgaurea), Horsetail (Equisetum arvense) and Nettle leaf (Urtica dioica). These plants have been shown to help clear the body of water-soluble metabolic wastes, like excess sodium and uric acid.

Supporting your body’s detoxification process has many health benefits including:

  • balanced energy
  • improved digestion
  • healthy immune system
  • healthy circulatory and lymphatic function
  • support for sleep and mood
  • healthy hormonal output
  • clearer skin
  • reduced toxic load

But what is the best way to support the cleansing of the body, beyond fad products, for a long-term positive outcome reflected in better health?

The first steps can be to consume organic fresh food and reduce your toxic load by not smoking and using cleaning and personal care products with no nasty chemicals.

Incorporating the plants mentioned above into your daily self-care practices is the next step in supporting optimal detoxification. Take them as a tea to support detoxification, as the hot water has additional flushing benefits over and above the active constituents in the plants.

All mentioned plants are recognised for their longstanding healing benefits in international regulatory pharmacopoeias.

TAPS No: PP2841
Always read the label and use as directed. If symptoms persist, see your health professional.

Author: Skye Macfarlane 

Skye is a Medical Herbalist and Naturopath, holding a Bachelor in Natural Medicine from the South Pacific College of Medicine.

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Masala Chai Poached Pears

Chai poached pears recipe

This warming recipe from Mister Chai uses pears and their Organic Loose Leaf Masala Chai tea to create this delicious dessert.

Serves: 4
Cook time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

Preparation:

  1. Combine water, jaggery and ginger in a pot just big enough to hold the pears, and bring to the boil.
  2. Add the Masala Chai and stir to combine, then take off the heat, cover, and let steep for 5-10 mins.
  3. Strain the liquid and return it to the pan. Peel pears and core from the bottom (leave stems intact).
  4. Place pears in the pot and simmer gently in the liquid for 20-30 mins or until tender right through.
  5. Carefully remove pears and set aside. Bring the liquid back to the boil and cook, uncovered, around 15 mins or until reduced and slightly thickened. Return pears to liquid briefly to heat through.
  6. Serve warm with coconut yoghurt and chopped toasted hazelnuts.

Made this recipe? We would love to see your photos! Share them with us on Instagram @HealthPostNZ.

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Your Season Survival Guide from Artemis

Season survival guide with Artemis traditional tea

Artemis share their six top season survival tips to help us find balance over the festive season.

While socialising around the silly season inevitably brings about meals, snacks, and drinks with it, part of our self-care routine is to enjoy the holidays, without letting all this “sometimes food” derail our health and wellbeing. It’s important to feel well enough to actually enjoy the holidays and to find balance, allowing ourselves to indulge now and again (guilt-free), while supporting our body’s natural functions so that we can bounce back from that day of too-much-chocolate-and-wine!

1. Listen to your hunger cues.

When eating socially, many of us ignore whether or not we are actually hungry. Eating too much when you’re not hungry can lead to bloating, indigestion, feeling tired and sluggish, never mind the expanding waistline. When someone offers you a snack, take a moment to focus on your belly. Are you actually hungry? If not, try saying something as simple as “no thanks”.

2. Get your veggies in, no matter what.

One of the best tricks is to eat something healthy and delicious before you go out, especially if you know healthy options are going to be limited. Make yourself a big green salad or a smoothie with some kale or spinach thrown in. You won’t be ravenous when you arrive, and you can have a few bites knowing that you’ve started the day with something nourishing and nutritious.

3. Plan ahead.

Make a plan for the week or month. Choose events that you know you will want to have a wine or two at, and don’t beat yourself up about it. Then, figure out how you are going to feel festive, without feeling left out, at the other events. The key is to do this BEFORE someone comes to fill up your glass.

4. Make a mocktail.

Bring tasty, non-alcoholic alternatives to BBQs and dinners with friends. Home-made iced tea or sparkling water with a lemon wedge in a wine glass still feels like a “treat”, without the side-effects. Kombucha (fermented tea) is another great alternative, and has the added bonus of containing beneficial probiotics and enzymes to support digestion.

5. Plant medicine daily.

Certain plant medicines can help to optimise your body’s natural ability to digest, detoxify, and eliminate. This is especially helpful at a time of year when we are putting an extra load on these systems.

Modern research shows that St Mary’s Thistle (Silybum marianum) can help support healthy liver function and help protect liver cells from harmful substances such as alcohol, drugs, poor diet, or exposure to chemical pollution.

Globe Artichoke (Cynara scolymus) also supports detoxification and elimination, due to its bitter plant compounds. The bitterness stimulates bile production, making it useful for supporting digestion, bowel regularity, bloating and queasy feelings.

Supporting the kidneys is also important, as they help to clear the body of water-soluble wastes. This can be enhanced by plant medicines such as Golden Rod (Solidago virgaurea), Horsetail (Equisetum arvense) and Nettle leaf (Urtica dioica). These plants have been shown to help clear the body of metabolic wastes like excess sodium and uric acid.

These plants can be used daily throughout the festive season as a medicinal tea to maintain good digestion, detoxification and elimination. But what if you’ve already overdone it and are left feeling bloated or unwell?

Plant medicines such as Peppermint (Mentha x piperita), Lemonbalm (Melissa officinalis), Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla), and Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) contain compounds which help to calm the digestive tract and ease gas, bloating and discomfort. Tea is again the best way to ingest these medicinal plants as the hot water extraction helps release the therapeutic volatile oils which help with digestive complaints.

6. Do your best, and relax the rest of the time.

No one’s perfect, and this is hardly the time of year to beat yourself up for eating or drinking something less-than-healthy. Follow the above steps, and if you happen to overdo it once or twice, know that it’s not the end of the world and you can simply have a salad and a smoothie tomorrow.

Shop Artemis‘ full range of traditional plant medicine teas including Digestive Ease Tea and Liver Detox Tea on our online store.

Always read the label and use as directed. If symptoms persist see our healthcare professional. Artemis Ltd, Dunedin.
TAPS: PP3162

Author: Emily Bose, Naturopath, and Medical Herbalist.

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