A Perfect Pregnancy Diet
Step 1: Eat Real Food.
Step 2: There isn't one.
If you do nothing else that alone will get you 90% of the way to a happy healthy pregnancy that's more likely to have positive outcomes.
But, if you want a real perfect pregnancy diet plan, backed by science, that you can follow for your entire pregnancy, then read on about The Brewer Diet.
What Is The Brewer Diet
The brewer diet is a way of making meal-plans that will help to keep you and your baby healthy during your pregnancy. If you nourish your body, your baby’s body will be nourished properly as well. The diet consists of foods from EVERY food group in proper proportions. It does have more protein than most normal diets, but your body is building a whole extra person. It needs the extra protein for this.
Who Is Dr Brewer
Dr. Tom Brewer is a medical obstetrician who, in the 1980’s, worked to find a way of preventing complications during pregnancy through nutrition instead of just throwing pills at his patients. While he does have some skeptics, (because you can’t actually do clinical trials on something like this ethically it would involve basically starving ½ of the pregnant women in your trial); most midwives and some doctors advocate this diet to their patients.
Since he couldn’t ethically perform trials of his theory, he decided to ask his patients to log everything they ate, and then tracked the outcomes of their pregnancies.
He found that the women who ate a well balanced diet, that was high in good protein, had outcomes that were almost always better than those of women who ate diets that were not as well balanced or were full of processed foods.
How Did I Find out about the Brewer Diet (aka, my story)
I had planned to have my first baby at home, but due to struggles with my blood pressure, my wonderful midwife at the time referred me to a doctor and I ended up having my first baby in the hospital.
It wasn't part of my plan, but I'm incredibly glad to have had access to well trained doctors who knew exactly what to do in the case of my preeclamptic pregnancy. Both my son and I left the hospital happy and healthy (oh and my husband too - I think he was more tired than me cause he didn't sleep the entire time we were there).
My second pregnancy ended early with a miscarriage (yeah that sucked!). So when I came up pregnant for the 3rd time, I started interviewing midwives immediately hoping to kill my fears of having yet another 'bad outcome’.
In the first interview with the lady who would become my midwife, before I had even chosen her as my pregnancy-partner, I told her that I had been hospitalized with preeclampsia during my first pregnancy and lost our second very early.
Our little boy had been born 6 weeks early, and weighed only 5 lbs. I was terrified that this would happen again or that I would have another miscarriage.
I just assumed that I wasn’t good at having babies and would probably have to have all my babies in the hospital, surrounded by doctors, nurses, bright lights, and an ever-looming threat of surgical birth.
Seriously, if my doctors had asked me one more time if I wanted drugs, I was gonna hit them with a pillow (I think that’s why they don’t give you anything more solid than popsicles)!
I wanted to know what my potential midwife would recommend for preventing preeclampsia in the future and ensuring that I had a happy healthy pregnancy - a question I had asked to every health-care professional I could find with no positive answer up to this point.
Without even pausing, the woman said that I should try The Brewer Diet.
Whoa! A real answer! Wasn't expecting that.
Everyone else (except for the next midwife I interviewed) had said that there was nothing I could do.
So, when I got home, I looked it up.
It seemed pretty straightforward.
Eat real food, create a well-balanced meal plan, & eat lots of protein. Couldn't be much simpler.
I’m glad I ended up choosing this woman as my midwife, but I’m even more glad she told me about The Brewer Diet.
During my first pregnancy I had been so stressed about what to eat because of all the conflicting advice out there. I knew the stress couldn’t have been healthy for me or my son.
Come to find out the diet recommendations I received (which are common for high blood pressure patients, but terrible for preeclamptic pregnant women) were the likely culprits of my worsening preeclampsia throughout my first pregnancy.
So, having a pregnancy approved list of foods drawn up with proper proportions and everything was like a god-send to me. Especially considering this diet had been shown time and time again to reduce or prevent negative outcomes like premature birth and preeclampsia.
I wasn’t quite as strict about following the diet as my midwife may have liked (liver and eggs both made me nauseated), but I followed it to the best of my ability and got to have my little girl at home. She was born the day before her due date, with no complications. A perfect 7 lb 2 oz healthy baby.
How Can You Implement This Diet In Your Life
The best way I’ve found to implement this diet is to Meal Plan. Its not the ONLY way, but if you have a plan, it’s just easier.
Just sit down with all your 'required for healthy baby growth' food categories at the beginning of the week and make sure you’re checking off each box as you write down what you’re planning on eating.
If you’ve missed something, toss in an extra snack between meals or add a side to your main dish.
It's a fairly simple diet to follow. You can visit this website are read all about the diet yourself and start working on your own meal plans.
I'm a big fan of making things super easy though. So, I had my team put together a really awesome Brewer Diet Checklist & Meal Planning Guide. It's a very simple two-page PDF you can download and print off and set about having that happy, healthy, stress-free pregnancy you want.
How The Brewer Diet Affects The Decisions we Make about what We Put Into The Pregnancy Subscription Box
When I started thinking about what I would want in a snack-filled box other than an incredible PreNatal vitamin, I started thinking about the principles behind The Brewer Diet. One of the major points was to EAT REAL FOOD!
Unfortunately, that doesn’t often translate well into portable snacks that can help keep an active pregnant woman nourished throughout the day.
Most of the snacks you can find on the market are so highly processed they don’t even resemble the food they started out as.
With this in mind, I created some basic criteria for the tasty snacks and treats we source and include in every Preggy Box we ship out. Here are my rules:
- I must be able to pronounce ALL of the ingredients on the label. I understand that everything is made of chemicals, but I don’t want to be force-fed them when they weren’t included in the original food.
- It has to be easily portable. The point of the snacks is for those times when you find yourself hungry (which for me meant I was soon nauseated as well), you’ll be able to reach into your purse and grab something to eat. Sadly, some things just don’t taste good after having been abused in the bottom of your purse. Bananas, for instance, don’t like being carried around in a purse… they get bruised, then pop and squish banana goo all over your tic-tac container (gross).
- Extra points if it was Certified Organic or GMO free. Again, I want the snacks and treats I eat (and put in our boxes) to be as close to the original food sources as humanly possible. So, not having extra chemicals sprayed on or injected into them to make them grow a certain way is a major plus.
- The food HAS to actually TASTE GOOD! I know people’s tastes differ, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t count as a snack if you have to have 4 glasses of water after eating it to get the taste out of your mouth. Plus, if I ate something that didn’t taste good while I was pregnant, it never stayed down for very long anyway (that’s why I carried banana-goo-covered tic tacs). One of the things I found when I started following The Brewer Diet was that when I chose food from the approved lists, they were generally pretty tasty. Since I had build my meal plans around this food, it was on hand all the time at home. SCORE! This was a vast improvement over my previous method of pregnancy food selection, which was basically just thinking “Ooh, that sounds good, I’ll eat that”. So, my team and I have taste-tested EVERYTHING that we put into the The Preggie Box. Each item is safe (and often times totally awesome) for your pregnant consumption. Every item is super tasty…. to us anyway!
If all we put in The Preggie Box was super-tasty-awesomely-healthy-pregnancy-safe (yeah that’s a new word we just made up) snacks and treats and our cool meal planning recipes and checklists... I think the box would be totally worth every penny. Just for the serious reduction in diet related stresses that every pregnant woman faces.
But of course we do better than that for you. We also include a powerful once-a-day PreNatal vitamin from Ohpana Naturals that hits all of the supplemental nutritional needs your body has when trying to grow a whole new human. This just continues our effort to remove stress and add happiness and health to your pregnancy. It is just one more thing you don’t have to think about ordering or picking up at the store as your pregnancy progresses. You can relax because it’s just gonna show up every month with your box of treats.
Then, we do one more thing that makes me happy and I’m sure will make you happy too... we include a surprise baby or mommy gift in every box. This might be a package of honest baby wipes, or a couple of super cute tiny baby socks, or a bottle of lovely nail polish that is totally safe for you while you’re pregnant. We try to pick items that will be useful for you and your new baby no matter how big or small and no matter if you get a boy or girl. It’s like a mini-baby shower every month. Why do we do this? Admit it... you love getting gifts and we want to pamper your pregnancy, so we send you gifts to make you happy.
So, if you’re already a member, thanks for reading. I hope this insight into how and why we put what we do in our boxes makes you feel awesome about what we send you each month.
If you’re not a member yet, why don’t your join now and we’ll ship you out your first box of happy as soon as tomorrow.
And Happy Pregnancy!