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Nourishing the Body Post Period


Now that your period is over…

It is the ideal time to nourish yourself as your body is now preparing a new follicle for your next cycle.  Specifically, we need to boost yin during your follicular phase from cycle day 3 to ovulation, which is ideally between cycle day 13 and 15.

So what is Yin anyway?

Well, It’s probably a term that you’ve heard before in close correlation with Yang. In Chinese medicine, Yin is the physical substance of the body and Yang is the physiological function. For example, Yang moves the blood through the heart which is Yin and causes the contraction of the muscle.

More importantly, Yin is the general term to include all bodily fluids including blood. And for those of you working on a cycle with Intra-Uterine Insemination (IUI) or In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) or trigger shots this is even more important for you as your body maybe trying to mature multiple follicles at once. This is a big job and we need to honor our bodies and support the best possible follicles.

Another important thing that I remind clients: women loose yin during orgasm and men loose essence (stored reserves-a little different and we will cover this soon!) so while Trying To Conceive (TTC) whether you are trying naturally, working with a specialist or want to support a balanced body really be mindful of this.

We also need to equally work on building up the blood. This is the Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) term which is much broader versus the western version which is the substance in the veins) as that has also been released during phase 1 of your cycle -the period which I for one hope was better than your previous! In TCM terms, blood is the nourishing substance that supports uterus, brain, bones and endocrine function.  

Tips for Building Yin & Blood

  • Don’t over exert yourself during exercise because this can further deplete your yin.
  • Clients trying to conceive (TTC) to avoid saunas, hot/warm yoga/Pilates too.
  • Practice every other day timed intercourse theory during the window of opportunity.
  • And partners, need to nourish themselves as well - hydrate, eat pumpkin seeds, include yin/blood foods
  • Remember to continue to eat warm cooked foods
  • Eat slowly, chew your food well and avoid ice water.
  • Regular meals are important, plan for snacks too.
  • Room temperature foods and liquids
  • Baked/poached fruit vs. raw fruit

We also need to equally work on building up the blood (the Chinese medicine term which is nourishment versus the western version which is the substance in the veins) as that has also been released during phase 1 of your cycle -the period which I for one hope was better than your previous!

In TCM terms, blood is the nourishing substance that supports uterus, brain, bones and endocrine function.  Blood is produced by the Spleen in Chinese medicine and when you are trying to conceive, TCM says to support the Spleen and the Stomach because it nourishes the whole body- brain, muscles, reproductive tissues.

One of the easiest ways to support building Yin and blood are to choose foods that support the formation of more Yin and blood. What I mean by that is that eating specific foods help nourish and balance the organs in charge of the reproductive system. We eat three to five times a day and ultimately, we can all choose to enjoy foods that support our goal in having healthy follicles. Here are some of the recipes I talked about in the latest video.  

Breakfast baked fruit: Add thinly sliced fruit, berries and apple cider to the bottom of a baking dish. Using coconut oil or ghee (clarified butter), whole wheat flour and a sweetener to build your crumble. Also, add in some sliced almonds. Mix toppings together to create a crumble and sprinkle on the top of the fruit and Bake at 350 until fruit is baked. About 20-35 minutes.

And add some yogurt or coconut cream to the top and enjoy!

Chia seed pudding: coconut milk or nut milk 2 to 3 cups, vanilla extract or almond are my favorite. Add chia seeds 3 to 4 tsp and blend. Place your pudding into a container and allow to set. Add berries, almonds or other fruit for a fun healthy snack or breakfast.

Chia seed drink: juice of one lime, honey/agave nectar to taste, hot water and chia seeds and a pinch or two of Himalayan sea salt. This is a great way to replenish yin and also replenish electrolytes too.

Bone broth-crock pot bones of a roast chicken or 1-2 pounds of organic chicken wings, roughly chopped carrots, celery, onion. Add seasoning with apple cider vinegar. Add water to cover the soup contents, cook for at least 24 and strain and pour into an ice cube tray to freeze, then store in the freezer. Pull out one to two cubes and cover with hot water and enjoy daily.

Legumes: black beans, red and pink kidney beans, Red, brown or yellow lentils, pinto beans, navy beans and one of my favorites for everyone is chickpeas- contains more iron than any other legume and is especially good for those who have short or light periods.

Grains: amaranth, quinoa, and bulgur wheat. I like to create a salad with bulgur wheat, roast carrots, beets, and sweet potatoes, mix in some goat cheese, green onions and a warm dressing and so yummy.

Fruits: berries-especially blueberries & goji berries, apricots, mango, apples, pears, and all white fleshy fruits---coconuts. Pineapple is a great source of Bromalin creates a great sticky endometrial lining and helps with allergies too.

Veggies: asparagus, beets, corn support sexual function, dark leafy greens, and yams.

Nuts: Walnuts, almonds, and pumpkin seeds.

Oils: flax seed, coconut, almond, avocado, and olive oil

Animal proteins: oysters, grass-fed, hormone free red meat, salmon, sardines, shrimp, turkey and eggs-organic free range and quail & duck eggs are much better than chicken if you can find them.

Avoid acrid or curry/spicy foods

Spices to Favor: Citrus peel, basil, lemongrass, cilantro, etc.

Other great ways to support the body while during phase 2 of your cycle are making sure that your body is balanced and getting regular support with acupuncture and Chinese herbs. We can work to address specific imbalances in hormones, support ovulation timing, reduce period pain and help with implantation and so much more. Acupuncture works to nourish and move the qi or energy of the body and herbal medicine balances the imbalances we see in the physical body. They are a great natural way to create an ideal environment for a new life. Practitioners trained in TCM can work directly with where you are and help support your goals and create an individualized plan. We would love to be a part of your care team. Contact us today for a consultation on herbal medicine or acupuncture.

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