BONUS CONTENT | INTRODUCING MOTHERHOOD SESSIONS from Gimlet with Dr. Alexandra Sacks

Confronting Your Parents After Motherhood

If you have listened to the show with any repetition you have probably heard me talk about how motherhood can drastically change your sense of self and that for some we struggle with this mandatory transition of moving from a maiden archetype into a mother type as we seek to conceive and build a family.

It’s a complex topic, but one that is so important because it’s real.

It’s necessary and it’s going to happen whether you like it or not as you step into motherhood.

It happened to me and I didn’t even birth my kids. I jumped straight into the deep end with four stepsons and was totally unprepared for how it would change me as a person. It changed the way I viewed my parents, my childhood and the world at large. And while it was such a good thing because an immense amount of growth came out of it, I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t a little jarring and uncomfortable at times. This is part of why this show sticks it’s toe into the pond of what to expect with pregnancy, birth, and motherhood, not just infertility.  I want you to be as prepared as possible and to be able to find answers and support you need when the time comes. 

I’m also a huge proponent of lifting up other women business owners and podcasts. Today I want to introduce you to a new podcast from Gimlet Media I think you will love that addresses this the concept of the archetypal shifts that happen as you become a parent and it’s called Motherhood Sessions. On Motherhood Sessions, the host who we haven’t had on Fertile Minds YET, psychiatrist Dr. Alexandra Sacks, works with women who are struggling with the massive life and identity shifts that accompany motherhood. In this extended trailer, you’ll hear from Julia, a Korean-American woman who’s grappling with some identity issues after being raised by a white family and not having much connection to her Asian culture until she had her first biological child.

Keep listening to hear a special trailer of Motherhood Sessions, which follows this message. Note that Motherhood Sessions covers sensitive topics and includes some profanity so pop in your earbuds when you are out in public listening or around little ears. We hope this honest, compelling conversation resonates with you, and if you love what you hear, you can listen to Motherhood Sessions on Spotify, Apple or wherever you get your podcasts. Fertile Minds will be back with a regular full length episode on Sunday!

P.S. If you or someone you know is experiencing depression or anxiety during pregnancy, or in the postpartum period, contact Postpartum Support International at (800) 944-4773. If you or a family member are worried about safety, get help right away by calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, or dialing 911. 

EPISODE 63 | HEALING AFTER BIRTH | Jennifer Summerfeldt, MACP

Is Trauma Standing in Your Way of Conceiving?

Description:

Jennifer Summerfeldt, MACP, joins the show to talk about how our bodies protect us through trauma, and her wisdom from working in the field of maternal health and psychology for over two decades. Along with being a counselor, childbirth advocate, doula, and maternal educator, Jennifer is the founder and creator of the Healing After Birth Program. She and Hillary talk about the brain and how it works in trauma, what led Jennifer to be a birth crusader, the different lenses of healing, and many of the indicators that may be pointing at trauma in birth that most people aren’t aware of.

Takeaways:

[8:17] Jennifer was a college-level athlete and has always had a passion for peak performance and a deep determination to excel in both mindset and physical achievement. She used some of the skills such as mental rehearsal and self-talk for her own birthing experience. Her intimate relationship with her own physiology in performance led to her self-directed choice in her eighth month to switch caregivers to hire a midwife to attend her first birth. The incredible empowerment she felt gave her a new mission to spread the word that there is much behind the veil of birth many women are not informed of.

[14:48] In her second childbirth, she endured a rough time emotionally, but stayed curious in her education, and the consumption of information and stories. This led her to discover just how many births are traumatic and violent for both the mothers and the babies, and it blew open her passion even more deeply.

[19:51] A conscious conception looks at all facets of birth and pregnancy. Jennifer believes we are initiated throughout an entire energetic continuum of bearing life which may include losses, conception issues, complicated childbirth and labor, or postpartum challenges. In our society, we are not often prepared or comfortable with the struggles these bring and in the tendency to suppress or move quickly through it, we miss out on the healing that surrendering to our wisdom and knowledge within brings.

[29:21] The last few years have shown an increase in care and languaging, but Jennifer feels there is a long way to go. She defines trauma as what we experience as the result of having an experience that activated our stress response, leaving us feeling trapped in our survival stress response. There is a physical reaction that instinctively happens, all intended for our safety and protection. However, the psychological component traps us in the stress response, in which we have a hard time discharging suffering and the feeling of threat to our survival.

[33:45] When we understand a disorganized system through the lens of a system, we can start to see how to use our innate intelligence to bring us back into balance and take the information and store it in an appropriate manner.

[40:03] The stress response not only affects digestion but also shuts down our reproductive system. Our bodies know that it is not time to reproduce if we need to protect ourselves from what we perceive as a threat.

[42:25] For those of us that have lived with unresolved trauma, we know that it has a deep and profound impact on our entire mind, body, and soul.

[44:17] Mammals in the wild know how to literally discharge and shake off energy, rage through and eventually restore the somatic repercussion of trauma.

[49:51] If we can cultivate the practice of mindfulness and activate the observer within us, it brings our pre-frontal cortex more back into balance.

[52:40] It’s the meaning behind the feelings that we are actually afraid of. We fear if I feel too much, I may die or hurt someone or myself.

[57:02] We get to a point where the distractions and diversions don’t work, and we are forced to do the work and create a new story in what Jennifer describes as the “collective womb.”

[61:34] Women tend to feel that their story is not important enough and yet storytelling is what makes us feel human and connected.

[66:20] Our unresolved birth experience has a profound impact on our relationships and the story we carry that impacts and ripples out in our life. Jennifer reminds us that the more we can cultivate the practice of “being with” and the less we label or create a biased attachment of meaning, the more we can be in true awe of our physiology and the amazing being that we are.

[69:44] Our biology is in favor of us wanting to thrive and is constantly giving us feedback and rich information.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Healing After Birth: Navigating Your Emotions After A Difficult Childbirth, by Jennifer Summerfeldt MACP

Spiritual Midwifery, by Ina May Gaskin

Birth Without Violence

Immaculate Deception: A New Look at Women and Childbirth in America, by Suzanne Arms

Jennifer Summerfeldt

Iain McGilchrist

Dan Siegel: “Flipping the Lid”

Healing After Birth Podcast

FREE 4 part video series - What Your Doctor Is Likely NOT Telling You About PPD/A CLICK HERE

Are you a soulfully inspired woman looking for next level counseling and coaching programs? CLICK HERE

Continue Your Journey:

@ladypotions4u on Instagram- Ask me anything in Insta Story

 Disclaimer *

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 61 | ESSENTIAL OILS TO ENHANCE FERTILITY, PREGNANCY & BIRTH | Shauna Wetenkamp

Description:

Shauna Wetenkamp joins the show to share her immense knowledge on essential oils and examples of ways she has used them in ways many people may not have thought possible. She talks about her own personal journey in using them to help heal after a severe accident, how essential oils can enhance our life and our fertility, the ways the “nose knows” when it comes to sniffing out great quality oils, which oils are great for specific emotions, and how to choose them intuitively.

To share your own fertility story, please email me at hillary@ladypotions.com. I look forward to connecting with you, as you are what this podcast is all about.

Takeaways:

[6:43] A very severe accident that Shauna endured, led her to appreciate the gift of being able to learn firsthand the healing properties of essential oils both physically and emotionally.

[9:39] A different oil can be applied for both almost every emotional and physical pain.

[12:38] When it comes to essential oils and medicine perfumes, a little goes a long way. The quality also matters, along with making sure it’s the appropriate oil and any emotions that need to be addressed along with the oil usage.

[16:22] Shauna loves to partner with doTerra because of their dedication to community, high quality, and purity, and work to uplift countries with indigenous peoples.

[19:42] For pain, a few that Shauna recommends are: Clary Sage (great for cramps), Frankincense, Lemongrass, Pink Pepper, Thyme, and Marjoram.

[28:12] Essential oils are a great tool for working with your mind and body as you observe emotions that are coming up, and that may have been stuck or pushed down for years.

[29:37] Shauna did her own physical therapy, and was completely committed to the only option of healing and regaining her health.

[33:16] Marjoram and Cedarwood are the oils of community, and the ability to allow true connection with others and to notice the good things present in your life.

[37:22] Geranium (love and trust) and Ylang Ylang (inner child) are great in a bath with Epsom salts to soak away the anger and sadness.

[40:23] Most often the oils we tend to stay away from and resist the most are the ones we could benefit from. Shauna advises bringing it in slowly and working in the emotion that it addresses.

[49:37] Shauna loves to put Sandalwood on her third eye for extra help in her intuition, and Rose to connect more with divine love. For fear, Bergamot is about loving yourself and having the courage to put ourselves first. Ginger, Lavender (clear communication), and Cypress (motion and flow) are also used to summon courage and help alleviate the physical symptoms of fear and anxiety.

[58:29] Journaling is a great way to record where you are at and put out emotions that are stuck.



As PROMISED in the podcast! How to know which oils should be contraindicated or used with caution in pregnancy?


The consensus about what essential oils should be Contraindicated during pregnancy vary greatly from source to source. Much of this may be due to the fact that many consider inhaling any of these oils generally safe during pregnancy. What is really an area of concern is topical use, especially in excess and certainly with internal use. All of the those listed below should not be consumed orally while pregnant, avoided during the first trimester in all forms, and only used topically or infused during the latter two trimesters with a deep understanding of benefit to risk ratio. 

Basil

Birch

Caraway

Cedarwood

Clary Sage 

Fennel

Juniper

Hyssop

Marjoram

Mugwort

Nutmeg

Peppermint

Pennyroyal

Rosemary

Sage

Tansy

Tarragon

Thuja 

Thyme

Wintergreen

Wormwood

Here are some of my favorite essential oil blends



Lady Potions Essential Oils Labor blend - diffuse in room or apply to acupressure points on ankle to stimulate contractions after labor has begun. May also be rubbed on lower stomach or lower back after labor has started. 

  • 5 drops ylang ylang

  • 4 drops helichrysum

  • 2 drops fennel

  • 2 drops clary sage

  • 2 drops peppermint


Lady Potions Essential Oils Fertility Blend

  • 4 drops champaca

  • 3 drops yarrow

  • 3 drops geranium

  • 2 drops neroli

  • 1 drop rose

  • Mix with carrier oil of choice and roll on wrist and neck as desired

     

Essential Oils to treat Hemorrhoids & soothe your lady parts after birth

  • Tea Tree

  • Cypress

  • Geranium

  • Lavender

  • 2 drops each mixed with aloe vera gel and applied directly OR added to 8 oz water, submerge washcloths in, freeze and sit on later. You can also use the oils and water and add it to maxi pads to be frozen and used to heal after a vaginal birth.

Essential Oils to Relieve Nausea During Pregnancy

  • Lavender

  • Chamomile

  • Spearmint

  • Ginger

  • Use as singles on a cotton ball and inhale or work it as a blend to diffuse that smells helpful to you. Some women will lean towards more ginger while others will lean towards extra spearmint depending on the type of nausea they are experiencing.

Do you have a favorite oil or helpful blend for fertility & pregnancy? If so comment below and help a sister out!

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

@ladypotions4u

Botanical Medicine for Women’s Health, by Aviva Romm

Encyclopedia of Essential Oils, by Julia Lawless

Essential Oils for Pregnancy, Birth & Babies, by Stephanie Fritz

Emotions and Essential Oils, by Enlighten

Ep 47: “Bach Flower Remedies for Emotions that Come Along with Fertility Challenges”

Shauna On Instagram

Shauna Wetenkamp Facebook

 

Continue Your Journey:

@ladypotions4u on Twitter

@ladypotions4u on Instagram 

Disclaimer *

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 45 | THE WHAT, WHY, AND HOW TO GO ABOUT DECIDING IF & WHEN YOU NEED A DOULA | Adriana Lozada

Being Born Into Parenthood

This week, we welcome Adriana Lozada, a woman of many accomplishments and talents including the remarkable brand Birthful, and assisting in over 150 births as a doula. Adriana sheds some light on what exactly a doula is, why a couple may want one, the benefits of having a doula, and how to decide which doula is right for your specific needs and desires.

Takeaway:

[1:52] Along with creating and running Birthful, Adriana is a birth doula, a postpartum educator, a sleep consultant, and co-author of Soy de Pura Madre, a half autobiography (written by well-known Venezuela actress and radio host, Ana María Simón), half pregnancy guide (written by Adriana), in Spanish.

[5:14] Adriana has been a doula for 13 years and loves sharing information on what it entails and the possibilities it provides that may help the birth experience.

[5:17] There are many types of doulas (birth, fertility, postpartum — to name a few), and they all have the core value of giving physical, emotional, and informational support. Adriana likes to liven up the definition, and thinks of doulas as “birth fairies that have research to back it up.”

[10:56] Adriana’s goal is to have the woman/couple have the best birth experience depending on their personal vision and foster the feeling of consent and empowerment in their own decisions.

[16:52] Doulas create space for the couple to empower themselves and make their own decisions, as opposed to feeling that things were chosen and done for them.

[19:04] There is a doula out there for everybody, but it’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. The most important thing is how you feel and ‘click’ with the person. In the organization Adriana has her certification under, DONA, speaking and deciding for the woman is out-of-scope.

[23:02] If your medical provider is not recommending you have a doula, dig deeper and find out why they feel that way and what their hesitations are.

[24:46] It’s never too late to get a doula, but the earlier you can do it the more benefits you gain. Adriana prefers contacting your potential doula 12-20 weeks to develop a relationship and discuss fears, hopes, and desires.

[28:36] Adriana describes her philosophy on nonlinear birthing and the physiological stages that come with a safe and protected birthing environment.

[33:36] Adriana assigns “homework” using a four-stage birth model to give women a tangible way to support and trust their body. The four stages of her model are: physical, chemical, mental, and emotional.

[35:46] The skills we value in our professional and everyday life such as being effective, organized, clean, and tidy in our ‘everyday,’ aren’t the top ones that help us for birthing and parenting. Instead, messiness, uncertainty, patience, intuition, and trust in the process are key.

[42:10] Adriana discusses the “pregnancy hangover” in postpartum when we are over-touched, and undervalued. She has created a postpartum vacation plan, where women and couples can focus on getting to know and taking care of their baby.

[55:38] Adriana’s one piece of advice for expecting couples “explore things with curiosity.”

 References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Adriana Lozada

Birthful Podcast

Birthful Courses

Safe Prevention of the Primary Cesarean Delivery

ACOG

Approaches to Limit Intervention During Labor and Birth

DONA International

Doula Match

Tampa Bay Birth Network

Rethinking the Pushing Stage, with Whapio

Thrive with Your Newborn use the code FERTILITY for 25% discount. Along with creating and running Birthful, Adriana is a birth doula, a postpartum educator, a sleep consultant, and co-author of Soy de Pura Madre, a half autobiography (written by well-known Venezuela actress and radio host, Ana María Simón), half pregnancy guide (written by Adriana), in Spanish.

Disclaimer * You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 39 | CAN BLOOD SUGARS AFFECT YOUR FERTILITY & PREGNANCY w/ Lily Nichols RDN, CDE

This week, we are joined again by the very knowledgeable (and one of our most popular Fertile Minds podcast guests) Lily Nichols. Not only is Lily a devoted mom, but she is a stellar author and a registered dietitian/nutritionist with a flair for interpreting scientific data and applying it to the modern-day woman. She speaks with Hillary today on her work helping women learn how to prevent or manage their Gestational Diabetes. She also discusses how we test for it, what makes someone more susceptible to acquiring it, and what the long-term complications are for both mama and baby once they are diagnosed with it.

Lily presents a unique approach in helping women manage their diet and lifestyle in her bestselling books, Real Food for Gestational Diabetesand Real Food for Pregnancy.

Takeaway:

[2:13] Lily describes what Gestational Diabetes is and is not. It is a type of Diabetes that develops or is diagnosed during pregnancy. Typically, your body is having trouble processing carbohydrates, causing high blood sugar.

[4:06] Lily uses a hybrid approach when screening for Gestational Diabetes, mixing traditional glucose tolerance tests with discussing their diet and lifestyle choices.

[7:08] Diet and lifestyle are two factors we can be proactive about in pregnancy, as well as in pre-conception.

[8:26] We are seeing that even mildly elevated is an issue, so it’s important women find out early. 49 to 52 percent have either diabetes or pre-diabetes, and most of them have yet to be diagnosed.

[8:50] We want to use A1C readings in pre-conception and in the first trimester and after that look at blood sugars. If A1C has not gone down later in pregnancy, that is a warning sign that something is going on. We recommend getting an over-the-counter glucometer and monitoring your blood sugar at home first thing in the morning and one to two hours after meals to get an idea of how your body responds to specific foods.

DOWNLOAD BLOOD GLUCOSE TRACKER

[12:58] Lily discusses the acceptable levels of fasting and non-fasting blood sugars in pregnant women. We naturally see lower blood sugar levels in a typical pregnancy, along with changes in the significant thyroid and the burning of more fat to send fatty acids to the baby.

[17:32] During pregnancy, if your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, there is a direct line from you to your baby to via umbilical cord. There’s also a physiological reason that women may not feel like eating during pregnancy, to try and push towards ketosis. This makes sense as to why breastfeeding is the best diet ever, as it pulls all the fat to give to the baby.

[22:19] When we have been on a sugar binge and try to come off of sugar, that is happening to the baby the first couple days, so you can imagine how jarring that is until they re-regulate.

[23:34] Even with a diagnosis of Gestational Diabetes, the recommendation of allowable daily carbs is still very high. Lily observed her clients blood sugar getting worse when they followed the protocol and found that a lower level of carbohydrates is ideal.

[27:34] The second part of Lily’s research was looking at ketones and the different part of ketosis. The benefit of the ketogenic diet becoming popular is now there is more discussion on what it means to be in ketosis and what types of ketosis are safe to be in.

[33:39] Lily observes that most women gain their weight in the second and early third trimester and tend to level out unless there is fluid retention.

[36:06] The pancreas is not accustomed to pumping out a large amount of insulin consistently.

[39:11] While it may be annoying and tedious, testing your blood sugar levels daily is well worth it for acquiring interesting data.

[40:41] We discuss the risk factors of how blood sugar issues may affect our children’s fertility and generations down the line. What we may be seeing now may be the epigenetic effect from our low-fat diet from the 1980’s.

[45:21] As you tend to get beyond the 35 and 40 BMI, you do see more pregnancy complications and macrosomia with an epigenetic carryover effect through generations and beyond.

[48:59] People feel like they have acquired a disease, but really your body is adapting to the environment in which it is currently in.

[49:18] Plan of action:

●     Start monitoring A1C & post-meal blood sugars pre-conception, if possible.

●     Pull an A1C in the first trimester and if it’s suspect get in touch with someone like Lily to get it under control. Check out Lily’s books AND video course, or join her Facebook group.

●     Eat real food throughout your pregnancy and a reasonable amount of carbs that works for you.

●     Continue to eat the same way, maybe even more good fats while you are breastfeeding to enhance your breast milk.

●     Bring up your children on the same diet they were exposed to in utero and educate them about blood sugars and food in general so they can affect the next two generations in a healthy way.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Pilatesnutritionist.com

http://pilatesnutritionist.com/why-i-drank-the-glucola/
http://pilatesnutritionist.com/i-failed-the-glucola/

Gestational Diabetes Course

California Diabetes and Pregnancy Program

Real Food for Gestational Diabetes: An Effective Alternative to the Conventional Nutrition Approach,
by Lily Nichols

Does Gestational Diabetes Occur in Pregnant Mares?  

Twitter.com/LilyNicholsRDN

Lily’s Instagram

 

Continue Your Journey:

Link to sign up for free 29-day meditation challenge

@ladypotions4uon Twitter

@ladypotions4uon Instagram

Disclaimer * 

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 35 | MASTERING MINDFULNESS DURING A HIGH RISK PREGNANCY | Pregnancy Brain with Parijat Deshpande

Description:

Parijat Deshpande is the leading high-risk pregnancy expert, perinatal mind-body wellness counselor, speaker, and author who guides women to quickly and effectively release their stress during their high-risk pregnancy so they can give their baby a strong start to life. Her bestselling book “Pregnancy Brain: A Mind-Body Approach to Stress Management During a High-Risk Pregnancy” and popular podcast Delivering Miracles® discuss the real, raw side of infertility and pregnancy in an interesting yet expert manner. Tune in for an episode where we discuss the physical impact of hope, how to surround yourself with a team that feels right to you, and making decisions based on clarity and confidence.

 

Takeaway:

[1:45] Parijat’s unique approach has served hundreds of women to manage pregnancy complications and reclaim a safety and trust in their bodies that they thought was eroded forever. Parijat is not afraid to swim in some deep waters and to talk about the tough aspects of infertility and pregnancy.

[3:28] Parijat is both an expert in this field and someone that comes at it from an organic angle. She understands the feelings of fear, isolation, and frustration that are often present in infertility and high-risk pregnancy.

[7:16] It’s very easy to shy away from hope when you have experienced health challenges. Hope is trust and faith in the outcome without the evidence to feel it. Our body (and baby) can feel our hope and faith, and it can also feel our fear and doubt. When we trust and know our body, and are connected with it, that is the building block and shining light of hope.

[10:52] Parijat combines her Clinical Psychology background with her own experiences and stories from the thousands of other women that have all felt and gone through the same thing.

[13:21] We can’t control the outcome of everything that happens in our life, but we can control our hope, the team around us, and the way we take care of and nourish our mind, body, and spirit.

[16:13] When you are going through high-risk pregnancy and infertility, it’s so important to find a doctor and team that conveys information with compassion, hope, and proactive management. Your providers take you much more seriously when you are straightforward and in touch with what’s happening in your body.

[21:28] Knowing the difference between anxiety and fear is crucial to how we manage stress and influence the physiological responses in our body. We isolate things in Western Medicine when they are very much intertwined between our emotions, thoughts, and manifestations within the body.

[27:58] The ego part of your brain would often times rather be familiar with what we know, even if that’s anxiety and worry. Learning how to relax is like working out a muscle, and something you can practice every day.

[31:11] Processing emotions rather than holding on to them while pregnant can seem daunting, but Parijat invites a gentle approach that works towards uprooting grief from the body so it can safely be let go.


[32:47] Parijat is offering a 15% off discount to the Fertile Minds family for her . Use the code fertilemindsat checkout to receive discount.

[36:41] Parijat works with women to recognize their bodies’ anchor points to guide them in making decisions based on clarity, rather than fear.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Pregnancy Brain: A Mind-Body Approach to Stress Management During a High-Risk Pregnancy,
by Parijat Deshpande

Delivering Miracles®

Parijat Deshpande

Continue Your Journey:

Link to sign up for free 29-day meditation challenge

@ladypotions4u on Twitter

@ladypotions4u on Instagram

My Website: Ladypotions.com

Disclaimer * 

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

 

EPISODE 31 | REAL FOOD FOR REAL PREGNANCY w/ Lily Nichols RDN, CDE

How to Feel Good, Build a Healthy Baby and Avoid Gestational Diabetes

Description: Today we welcome Lily Nichols, Registered Dietitian, Nutritionist, Certified Diabetes Educator,  researcher and an author with a passion for evidence-based prenatal nutrition and exercise. Lily draws from the current scientific literature and blends it with the wisdom of traditional culture and nature. We talk about the Western expectation of women managing it all directly after pregnancy and giving birth, and Lily’s prescription for healing and self-care. She shares how she began backing philosophy with results and clinical data to author two of her groundbreaking books, Real Food for Gestational Diabetes and Real Food for Pregnancy. She also gives some of her top picks for pregnancy food, embracing mindfulness, and how she feeds her family for months at a time using only two animals. Let your intuition guide you, and then use Lily’s book to prove these decisions with scientifically proven data.

Get the first chapter of Real Food for Pregnancy Free

To share your own fertility story, please email me at hillary@ladypotions.com. I look forward to connecting with you, as you are what this podcast is all about.

 

Takeaway:

[2:26] Lily wrote Real Food for Pregnancy when her son was 10 months old, and she herself was healing from pregnancy and birth.

[3:48] Lily encourages prioritizing food and self-care at all stages of pregnancy, including the preventative stage prior, and the fourth trimester, the postpartum months.

[7:38] It was almost by accident that Lily got into the nutrition field. She was looking for a part-time role in the nutrition field that did not include a hospital, saw an opening for California Diabetes and Pregnancy Program and starting working clinically in Gestational Diabetes. As she implemented the nutrition element of the protocol in the clinic, she noticed a lack of improvement. The common sense side of her observed the current guidelines didn’t emphasize real foods, and were pretty high-carb.

[8:47] Women with Gestational Diabetes are often not able to tolerate large amounts of carbs without elevated blood sugar. These findings led Lily down the path of researching a low carb and nutrient dense diet from real foods. She started using it clinically and knew she was on to something with excellent results. This led her to author her first book, Real Food for Gestational Diabetes. This changed the course of how many viewed their philosophy in the nutrition and pregnancy field.

[14:38] Lily comes at the information from a proactive and informed outcome, not a fear-based one.

[18:12] Lily shares some sample meal plans compared to the current recommended ones, and the breakdown of the ratio between protein, carb, etc.

[21:20] Carbohydrates are in many vegetables and fruits.

[22:07] There is very little nutrition education for MD’s, and much of what they are learning is outdated. One example is the hesitancy for the low carb diet due to ketones in the urine.

[24:27] Organ meats and liver are the most nutrient dense parts of an animal. Supplying a high amount of iron, choline and B12, Lily supplies recipe ideas in her books on incorporating it dishes, so you aren’t eating a whole plate of just liver.

[35:07] When choosing animal products, Lily is a proponent of choosing the highest quality and best sourced meat. Nothing goes to waste and she encourages families to purchase from a farmer and utilize the whole animal.

[38:57] Even the most culinary-challenged person can develop basic skills to make a flavorful and nutritious meal.

[45:14] Lily gives us some good news — her opinion is that small amounts of caffeine are okay. A lot of the foods that are mentioned to avoid due to food borne illness are also ones that provide critical nutrients. She suggests eating foods sourced from high quality places, and the risk is extremely low. 

[52:58] Eating well is one of the ways we can be mindful in pregnancy. Mindful moments, spiritual self-care and moving our body are also key elements to keep our body aligned through the process. It’s not about pushing and resisting, it’s about being mindful and going with the flow in a gentle. guided way.

 

Continuing your journey:

Lily Nichols Blog

Real Food for Pregnancy- amazon

Real Food for Pregnancy — Get the First Chapter Free 

Gestational Diabetes info and course by Lily Nichols

Real Food for Gestational Diabetes

California Diabetes and Pregnancy Program

@lilynicholsrdn on Instagram

@ladypotions4u on Twitter

@ladypotions4u on Instagram

American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine

Disclaimer * 

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 27 | ADVANCEMENTS IN TREATING RECURRENT PREGNANCY LOSS | Dr. Zev Williams, M.D, PhD

Today’s episode features Zev Williams, M.D., Ph.D. He is the Chief of the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility and an Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Columbia University Medical Center and is a nationally-recognized clinician and researcher in the area of recurrent pregnancy loss and infertility. Not only is he one of the most brilliant minds I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing, he is incredibly humble, gracious, and passionate about his work. His intentions to help couples overcome recurrent pregnancy loss by building healthy happy families came through so clearly during this chat.

We touched on why miscarriage rates are so high and why the public has false perceptions about it being a rare event. He spoke about how his research has even uncovered a way to find out if the cause of a miscarriage was chromosomal even years after the fact in some cases. He explained the differences in PGD and PGS testing when using IVF and when and for whom it might be highly beneficial. We also spoke about MTHFR gene mutation, and what it really means in regards to treatment strategy and further testing. We even touched on his work with stem cells and the potential they have for one day helping women who experience premature ovarian failure to overcome this devastating diagnosis. He explained new ways to treat endometriosis and preserve fertility and new ways to diagnose PCOS. 

Takeaway:

[1:15] Dr. Williams completed his M.D. and Ph.D. training in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine before continuing to the Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Massachusetts General Hospital for his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology. After completing his fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at Weill Cornell, Dr. Williams then did a post-doctoral fellowship in RNA biology in the laboratory of Dr. Thomas Tuschl at Rockefeller University.

[1:45] Dr. Williams has also achieved success in federally-funded research projects in several different areas of study, having received numerous NIH grants to support his work. Currently, as part of an NIH R01 grant, Dr. Williams is engaged with a research project intended to use placental RNA as a screening tool for diseases and complications of pregnancy, to enable early intervention, and to provide insights into disease pathogenesis for things like pre-eclampsia.

[4:35] Dr. Williams works with couples and doctors all over the world, and the research that he and his colleagues find benefits those all over looking for answers on fertility.

[5:16] The PEARL Program that Dr. Williams started stands for Program for Early and Recurrent Pregnancy Loss. It is one of the only centers in the world that is both clinically focused, and a basic/translational research program dedicated trying to understand what causes unexplained miscarriages and trying to find ways methods to prevent them in the future.

[12:22] One of the realities of human reproduction is that is a very inefficient process. Of the eggs that get fertilized, very few result in a live birth.

[19:22] Dr. Williams explains the difference between PGD and PGS testing when using IVF, and who may benefit from these tests.

[26:54] We cover the MTHFR gene mutation and antiphospholipids, and what it really means in regards to treatment, strategy, and further testing.

[32:45] Dr. Williams explains the work on helping the brain to produce its own FSH (follicle stimulating hormones) which is the bodies own version of that hormone compared to traditional injections with his CORAL IVF which is an oral IVF requiring only one shot instead of 30.

[41:23] Dr. Williams shares the new ways to treat endometriosis and preserve fertility and new ways to diagnose PCOS.

[45:27] Diet is, of course, important to overall health, but also very important to pregnancy success. There are some factors that lead to Dr. Williams’ recommending a diet low in carbs and sugar.

[46:12] Egg freezing has become successful, but the challenge is that often women are thinking about freezing their eggs in their 20’s when the eggs have already lowered in quality. And fertilized eggs freeze better than eggs which require a partner.

[49:58] Once you are trying to conceive (and of course through all of the process), make sure to support each other. It’s a tough journey and you want to be going through it together.

Take the Fertile Minds Meditation challenge and see what a fertile mind feels like. Each day you’ll receive access to a 15 minute guided meditation designed to yield more clarity and calm no matter where you are on your path to building a family.

If you are feeling frustrated and wish you could experience feeling more patient this challenge is for you.

If you are finding yourself resentful and want to feel empowered instead this challenge is for you.

If you are feeling lost and overwhelmed with all things fertility and long to be more centered during the process of striving for a family this challenge is for you.

If you’ve wanted to add meditation to your self care routine but had no idea where to start this challenge is for you.

You'll learn how to shift your attention from the future to the present moment helping you to feel more fulfilled and patient with the process, your life, your partner and maybe even God.

You won't know though until you commit to the challenge. I'll be there with you every step of the way, one complete menstrual cycle, until it becomes your new favorite habit. Meditate, Listen, Trust, Repeat

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine

Dr. Zev Williams 

Dr. Zev Williams Bio 

Columbia University Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology  

Efficient Differentiation of Steroidogenic and Germ-Like Cells from Epigenetically Related iPSCs Derived from Ovarian Granulosa Cells

FMR1 targets distinct mRNA sequence elements to regulate protein expression 

Nytimes.com/2015/11/26/health/progesterone-may-not-help-women-with-history-of-miscarriages-study-finds

Huffingtonpost.com/science-of-us/miscarriage_b_8000760.html?ncid=txtlnkusaolp00000592

Wsj.com/articles/solving-the-mystery-of-miscarriages-1434389396

Columbiaobgyn.org/profile/s-zev-williams-md

Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26000502

Nyp.org/enewsletters/advances/2018/gynecology/2018-Advances-Gynecology-Issue1.html

Continue Your Journey:

Link to sign up for free 29-day meditation challenge

@ladypotions4u on Twitter

@ladypotions4u on Instagram

 

Disclaimer *

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.


EPISODE 14 | PLACENTAS, PUSHING & THE 4TH TRIMESTER | PT2 w/ Dawn Herring

Why we use our placenta, how to get labor going, and understanding when an intervention is medically necessary.

Description: We are thrilled to have the awesome Dawn Herring of Empowered Birth Series back as our guest today. Like myself, Dawn wants to change the conversation in labor to where it can unfold throughout the process and the woman finds it easier to trust her body through grounded knowledge and preparation. Every woman is different, every birth is different, and we are here to share our full-circle journeys to help empower and free us from an exact perception of what birth should look like. I talk with Dawn about the Bishop Score, placentas, and the importance of taking labels off any judgment of looking at any and all options during childbirth and conception. We hope our talk inspires you to allow what is and listen to your own body as a guide.


Takeaways

[7:16] Dawn shares how some of the complications of her own birth experience helped to heal her own judgment and expectations on how birth should be. Now she can provide information neutral and evidence-based.

[18:26] When discussing an intervention, it’s important to first check upon the health of mother and baby.

[19:10] Dawn discusses what a Bishop Score is, and how women can use it to their advantage as a powerful tool and dialogue to determine what type of intervention, if any, is appropriate.

[28:01] Dawn shares the tricks of encouraging labor to begin that she teaches in her Class 4. She is a huge fan of acupressure, herbs, a chiropractor trained in the Webster Technique, and nipple stimulation. It is very important to be in touch with your practitioner and/or midwife regarding these plans so everyone can be on board with the plan.

[35:44] Most women’s water breaks while they are in labor. If the water does break before labor, Dawn likes the use the COAT method to know what to look for: Color, Odor, Amount, and Time.

[46:53] Dawn and I both have seen a lot of information on the placenta, and discuss the possibility of eating your placenta. There have been thousands of years with research to back up that for the right situation it can be beneficial and healthy.

[57:30] Dawn’s last class talks about the 4th trimester which I think is so crucial. This is where every new mom really starts to doubt herself and I’ve seen education and grandmothers and friends make a huge difference at this stage in a woman’s life so I love that she broached this subject.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

 

Continue Your Journey:

Bishop Score Research

Debra Betts — Acupuncture and Acupressure for Pregnancy and Childbirth

Placenta- buddha belly doula & placenta services

Acupressure App on google Play

More Placenta! Research

EPISODE 11 | EMPOWERED BIRTH PT 1 | Labor Positions, Stages & Breath w/ Dawn Herring

Labor Positions, Stages of Labor, and Breathing During Birth with Dawn Herring of the Empowered Birth Series Pt. 1

 

Description:

Today I welcome special guest Dawn Herring, wife and mama of two beautiful babies and Happy Birth Way (HBW) Certified Childbirth Educator. Dawn shares with us how she became a childbirth educator and what inspires her to educate couples on evidence to have the most empowered birth experience possible. We cover three very important lessons that Dawn teaches in her class recording breath and movement, the stages and phases of labor, support techniques, the role of mindfulness, intuition and movement, and some practical tips to be armed with information throughout their journey.

Takeaways

We welcome to the show our special guest, Dawn Herring.

[4:45] Dawn knew when she was pregnant with her first baby and sitting in her HBW (Happy Birth Way) birth education class — and marketing the training — that she wanted to teach. She herself had some healing to do — both of her births were beautiful water births but ended in transfers to the hospital due to complications from a retained placenta. It took her taking her own training to really begin to heal from the self-judgment, doubt, and disappointment that she was carrying with her because things didn’t go quite as planned.

[5:40] Giving women and their partners the education AND open space to have a conversation of compassion, empathy, and understanding is her catalyst and passion.

[10:20] Radical self-acceptance and love is the place to start in the process of an empowered birth. Accept and forgive knowing you did the best you could, and practice mindfulness with being present with your loved ones.

[12:08] Dawn shares what an empowered birth and labor experience looks like. Knowledge is power and the more meaningful dialogue a mom has prior to the labor the more set up they are and the easier to navigate through the process, should things change.

[17:04] The ability to connect with our babies early on in pregnancy helps to foster a sense of trust in the process and to surrender to the perfection in what’s happening.

[18:47] Her first class is “Breath and Movement.” We kick off our series by understanding how important breath and movement are during labor. Breath during labor is so important because how we breathe is directly correlate to how our nervous system and hormonal system respond in labor. Using the breath to cope during labor helps to keep our minds “right” and our body to do what it needs to do to keep labor progressing. 

[25:43] The second class is “The Letting Go of Labor – Stages and Phases and Labor Support Techniques.” 

This includes how knowing what’s happening in your body during labor, and what your baby is doing, is key to setting yourself up for an empowered experience. In this class, the focus is on what’s happening during Stage

1 labor — early, active and transition. In this class, Moms will learn how to use movement to bring awareness to what you and your baby need during labor. This also empowers labor partners to give practical tips on how to help the mom.

[35:02] Attending birth classes is a very important part of men being empowered, because this is new to them, too. Giving them as much info as possible can help set them up and make them feel comfortable with what lies ahead.

[40:22] “Learning Labor Positions.” The third class is practicing some labor positions in an environment that simulates the intensity of a contraction that can help moms and dads practice their breath along with movement and get some of the “awkwardness” out so that they can remember it when the time comes.

[49:40] For any of Dawn’s students where interventions became part of the equation, they have ALL said that they felt in charge of those choices, informed, empowered and less scared about them. We can also tell you that where you labor makes a huge difference vs. birth center, home, etc.

[56:57] We don’t want to be in fear or defensive, and the more we can dialogue — the earlier possible — the better. It’s a good idea to get everyone involved with the birth on board before the actual labor begins.

[66:30] We give information on Dawn’s classes and how you can take them if you are currently in the Tampa area. 

Links to take you further

To Reach out to Dawn for private sessions

empoweredbirthseries@gmail.com

Link to register for Dec 7th Class - if  you don't have a mindbody account, it will take a brief minute to create one. 

http://bit.ly/2y384df

Links on induction - I will preface this with that these are for women who enjoy reading statistics and lots of detailed info. I find them fascinating but also get taken out sometimes with all the dates, etc.  But for the most part, Evidence Based Birth does a great job of compiling data and getting to a bottom line:

https://evidencebasedbirth.com/friedmans-curve-and-failure-to-progress-a-leading-cause-of-unplanned-c-sections/

https://evidencebasedbirth.com/evidence-on-inducing-labor-for-going-past-your-due-date/

Maternal Age:

https://evidencebasedbirth.com/advanced-maternal-age/

EPISODE 8 | DO YOUR LADY PARTS NEED A COACH? | Mary Ellen Kramp, PT

Understanding the role physical therapy can have in treating infertility.

Today I am here with Mary Ellen Kramp, Physical Therapy Specialist as well as a technician in craniosacral therapy, lymphatic drainage, and visceral manipulation. We have a lively and in-depth talk on the importance of structural integration when you are trying to get pregnant, as well as during pregnancy, and then my favorite part of this topic, what you can do for yourself postpartum. Mary Ellen’s gentle approach has helped many women with issues both during pregnancy and postpartum. It’s rare that women get referred for physical therapy related to fertility issues, but Mary Ellen works hard to change any stigma, open up a dialogue, and be an advocate for the benefits and health-related gains of seeing either her or a practitioner with a similar approach. Finally, we talk with her about self-care being one of the most important things you can do for yourself, your partner, and your baby, along with her advice for those trying to have a baby.



Takeaways

[2:15] Mary Ellen gives the background of her becoming a physical therapist. Both she and I are nerds at heart with a love for the human body and healing! She ended up getting a reputation as the person to see when no one could figure out what was going on with them.

[5:20] The normal fertility rate is 57% of couples trying by 3 months will become pregnant, and her results were bringing people up to the average.

[9:27] Mary Ellen raised therapy guide dogs and now there are puppies at her office!

[11:49] Mary Ellen takes a very gentle, yet effective, approach to physical therapy for infertility. She looks for trigger points, muscular and structural issues, and acts as a catalyst to get the body to release what it does not need.

[16:21] Mary Ellen looks at both the pelvic muscles to see if there is anything to be released and then next the lymphatic system. The lymph system and fascia are both two crucial elements often overlooked when it comes to fertility and women’s health.

[20:43] She often treats women during pregnancy around week 36 to help prevent birth trauma. Some need just one appointment, and some need more frequent treatment.

[24:05] Postpartum work is super important to help a plethora of issues that women may think they are stuck with for the rest of their life.

[34:46] Women in France take a few weeks after giving birth to get physical therapy for their pelvic floor walls.

[37:29] Mary Ellen and I both stress the importance of self-care after giving birth.

[39:36] Her one piece of advice for women trying to get pregnant: there is so much more than just Western Medicine. You have to do what you need to become pregnant, but keep an open mind to the body/mind connection and “alternative” treatments.

[42:10] With some women who have abuse and trauma in their past, their pelvic floor holds a lot of tension. Usually, it helps to deal with the emotional portion first, and then it will help to unblock the head and the heart. Then a physical worker can help clear some of the trauma.

Screen Shot 2018-09-27 at 3.14.10 PM.png

Special thanks to Dr. Frank Netter for spending his life creating such amazing anatomy drawings for geeks like me!

 

Continue Your Journey:

NCCAOM.Org

American Herbalist Guild 

Atlas of Human Anatomy

Pelvichealthresearch.org 

Mechanicalinfertilitystudy.com

Reliefathand.com