The Evidence-Based Information You Need to Know about Real Food, Pregnancy Diets, & Postpartum Nutrition with Lily Nichols, RDN

Show Notes:

Join me this week as we uncover the evidence-based information that you need to know when it comes to your diet and nutrition while pregnant! ๐Ÿฅ— You'll be shocked to see the difference between what your OB is telling you to eat versus what you should actually be eating! ๐Ÿคฏ

[1:13] GIVEAWAY: As a bonus to thank you for listening to this episode and to ensure you get everything you can out of learning about prenatal nutrition, I am giving away a copy of our guest’s book, Real Food for Pregnancy! ๐Ÿฅณ All you have to do is leave a review for The Pregnancy & Birth Made Easy podcast. โญ๏ธ Screenshot it and send it to [email protected]!

[2:33] Our reviewer of the week is, atap123, and she says: “I only wish I found this podcast earlier! I found this podcast at 37 weeks, and I have faithfully listened to an episode a day. Helped me remember so many things about birth that I forgot about since my first. And I love that it’s non-judgmental and open to all scenarios.” Thank you for your review! ๐Ÿ’œ

[3:13] Today we’re going to talk about prenatal nutrition! My guest, Lily Nichols, a registered dietician nutritionist and a diabetes educator. Most of her work has been done in the prenatal space (specifically regarding gestational diabetes). She has two books: Real Food for Gestational Diabetes and Real Food for Pregnancy. ๐Ÿ“š

[5:00] I personally have read Lily’s books, follow her on Instagram, and enjoy her blog articles. She has evidence-based information and has done study, research, and has so many resources for mamas. ๐Ÿค“

[5:29] My first question for Lily is: “What is the difference between asking your OB or prenatal provider about nutrition and what is written in her book?” Lily shares that medical school does not cover nutrition in depth. Typically, when you ask something about nutrition, you will receive very basic, outdated, and sometimes misleading information. ๐Ÿคจ

[8:28] A dietician has a four-year degree in nutrition and a one-year internship. Much of the work Lily has done has been on her own. Research, conferences, her practice, her own experience, etc. Much of what she has learned has been on-the-job. ๐Ÿคฐ๐Ÿผ

[11:32] So what is “real food?” Lily goes into detail about what is optimal for mom and baby, which is a nutrient-dense diet. Modern day processing takes away the nutritional value of foods. Real foods have not been processed in a way that removes nutrients. ๐Ÿฅ—

[14:56] Lily speaks about macronutrients and also takes on the traditional food pyramid that we have been taught and how it is not a healthy balanced diet. โš–๏ธ Conventional prenatal nutritional guidelines is high in carbs and low in fats. According to Lily’s studies and work, prenatal nutrition should be high in protein and cut back on carbs (eating better carbs with higher fiber levels).

[20:24] Lily recommends eating protein over everything else. Foods that are most nutrient-dense and provide the most vitamins and minerals are found in protein rich foods. ๐Ÿฅš

[25:01] There is a 73% gap between what your OB is telling you to eat for protein and what you should be eating! By focusing on a real food diet, you can avoid things like gestational diabetes and preeclampsia! What we do affects our babies, but what we eat affects how our babies will react to foods for the rest of their lives! ๐Ÿคฏ

[26:35] I ask Lily to share about the “Plate Method.” It’s a helpful schematic for planning a healthy meal. 1/4 of the plate is protein (and the fats meant to be in those sources), 1/2 of the plate is non-starchy vegetables, and 1/4 of the plate would be concentrated sources of carbohydrates (fruit, legumes, etc.) ๐Ÿฝ๏ธ

[32:12] “What about ‘feeling full’?” Lily is a big fan of mindful eating. Carbs do give us the sensation of being full, but they are digested quickly. They give us a blood sugar spike and crash. Protein is the most satiating nutrient of all without taking space in our stomachs. The sensation of “I’m full” may be different. ๐Ÿ˜‹

[37:57] I mention that I have several moms that follow along that are vegetarian. Lily says that a protein-rich diet while a vegetarian is still achievable if they also eat eggs and dairy. ๐Ÿง€ She talks about sources for nutrients and where to look for them in foods we consume.

[43:33] Lily also has a Real Food for Gestational Diabetes book. She also has meal plans, supplements, screenings & testing to have done, recipes, and more in her books! ๐Ÿ—

[44:26] During postpartum recovery, your nutrient needs are higher than when you were pregnant. You are recovering from birth, and your body is producing breastmilk! Lily emphasizes the importance of nourishing your body postpartum. ๐Ÿณ

[48:03] You can find Lily on her website and on her Instagram. She gives away the first chapter of her book for free! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ

To Leave a Review โญ๏ธ

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ALL the best,


Links Mentioned:

My Essential Birth Course

My Essential Birth Instagram

Real Food for Pregnancy

Real Food for Gestational Diabetes


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