TIPS FOR POSTPARTUM SKIN
With each of my pregnancies my skin reacted differently after. The rollercoaster of hormones and the impact your body goes through when giving birth affects everyone differently. But what I learned is that by taking a more holistic approach to healing resulted in my skin being happy and healthy. During my time in Kerala, India, as a child I remember watching my elder cousins who just gave birth be doused in oil and massaged every day in a palm leaf tent that was constructed outside in the backyard. The massages were performed by midwifes to heal and strengthen the body. Accompanying this regimen, a specific diet was prescribed to replenish and fortify the new mother. According to the ancient medicinal science of Ayurveda, it is said for postpartum healing rest and nourishment is necessary for 40 days to restore and during this time it is important to pay close attention to how you treat the body. With no palm leaf tent outside my Brooklyn apartment or an Indian midwife to pamper me with massages I created my own regimen to heal and renew. With my second child I experienced extremely dry skin like I never had before. Armed with traditions passed down and my personal experience, I wanted to share some tips on how to nurture your skin after experiencing one of life’s most special moments:
1. Drink plenty of fluids:
With breastfeeding and your body lacking all the nutrients it had once been bursting with, drinking water is a must. Make sure it is at room temperature.
2. Full-Body Massage:
Massage increases circulation and lymphatic drainage to facilitate the elimination of excess fluids and waste products. Tissue stimulation assists your body to shift water to the right places. It also helps reduce swelling and back pain while strengthening muscles and help quicken recovery of your body. Try incorporating a daily massage into your regimen, either before or after the shower by beginning with the neck and working your way down to your feet.
3. Use Oils:
More than lotion, oils are reparative and better at sealing in moisture. Use Sesame Seed oil or Almond oil to massage as they are nourishing and help condition the skin. The added benefit, you don’t have to concern yourself with the ingredient label since there are not any unsightly chemicals involved. Slightly warm oil and apply daily to the entire body.
4. Avoid raw foods:
Salads, cold meals, raw foods are difficult to digest after giving birth. Choose warm meals that nourish the tissues. Eat slow burning carbs and bone marrow broths as they are extremely nutrient rich. I personally had followed a vegetarian diet filled with cooked spinach, green mung beans, lentils, steamed plantains and rice with ghee.
5. Add Ghee to your diet:
An excellent nourisher and hydrator of all bodily tissues, ghee is a very pure food that is incredibly nutritious. Take two teaspoons a day by cooking with or adding it to rice. If you had a c-section, add ghee to your diet after your incision has healed. This Ayurvedic staple also helps shed post pregnancy weight.
6. Dashamoola tea:
This herbal tea is typically recommended during postpartum recovery. A cup twice a day helps boost your immunity and is an incredible anti-inflammatory that helps reduce common post-delivery symptoms.
These tips can be extremely beneficial if incorporated into your routine and followed with consistency. Of course, the most important part is during this time is to relax the mind and savor these moments with your little bundle of joy.
Love + Light,