Any mother worth her salt is going to be looking for ways to best nourish her family, and that includes the precious little ones still in the womb. There are many opinions out there on what’s best for you and yours , but Nina Planck’s new book, Real Food for Mother and Baby: The Fertility Diet, Eating for Two, and Baby’s First Foods
is by far is the one that I’ve agreed with the most! Her advice in invaluable and her own life experience is both fun, amusing, and touching. This book was written after her first was in the toddler stage and when she was pregnant with twins (whom she carried to full term, had a VBAC delivery with both of them, and who are now being nursed and loved at home).
Many of you will know Nina from her first book, Real Food: What to Eat and Why. There she outlines what “real food” really is and what it’s not. I loved her book for standing up for real (that is, nourishing) foods, and her insightful discussion of recent research. I love the mix of examining research and appreciating real food. She brings a lot to the table (pun intended!).
Her new book brings that same mix of appreciation for traditional foods for fertility, pregnancy, post-partum and feeding your toddler and backing up her claims with research, logic, and humor. She also makes it personal by weaving her own story throughout the book. I think that a book on healthy food could be quite boring, but I have read through this book now one and a half times, and both times I’ve become engrossed! The blend of her story with the research and tips keep me reading all the way through.
Rather than simply sharing what nutrients are important, she shares what foods go along with those nutrients. For example, men need vitamin E, zinc, vitamin c, iron, folate, among other nutrients for good fertility. Women need the same, plus others. She shares what whole foods will give you these nutrients. Because she has some handy charts in the book, listing needed nutrients and foods, I have found it easy to flip to a section and find the info I need (for my next pregnancy, I will probably photocopy some of these charts to keep within easy access).
Most of all, what I appreciate about this book is that she somehow manages to share a lot of information without seeming condemning or overwhelming you. Truthfully, our bodies need a lot of different nutrients just to survive, let alone make a baby! So looking at all of the nutrient needs can seem like a steep order. But she gives such simple, yet clear guidelines that it does seem doable after all. That is a feat in itself!
Just one last note, I recommended her first book to a dear friend, who ended up loving the book. However as a conservative Christian, she was a little nervous about the evolutionary view point that appeared here and there. I think the wonderful thing is that those of us with different viewpoints can still agree on what to eat! You will find a lot of helpful information here, even if you don’t see eye to eye on the origin of Man.
There are a lot of really meaty quotes that I could share with you about how toxins are bad for you and your baby, why certain foods are vital to your health, and so on, but I wanted to share just one quote to show her practical advice as well.
“Slow down and take the long view. You have forty weeks to eat well. It’s better not to think about daily consumption of any nutrient or any food. The fabulous, abundant banquet of good foods in pregnancy books including this one, is just a notion, a list of options to encourage you. No matter what they say, you simply do not need to eat all of these foods every day, and you’ll be miserable if you try. ”
This is the kind of book, filled with practical and reassuring advice along with the meaty information you need to nourish yourself that all of us need! She challenges you to eat well, shares research frankly, but does so without piling excessive worry on you. If you are considering getting pregnant or are, I definitely recommend you get this book! I think that it will be invaluable to any pregnant woman.
And today, we will be giving away two, autographed copies of Real Food for Mother and baby. I am so excited!
To enter, all you need to do, is click on the link below to check out Nina’s site and then come back here to leave a comment saying why you would like a copy of this book. For a second entry, follow Nina on twitter (you will find her twitter link on her site) and then come back here and let me know that you are.
I am thrilled to say that Nina just signed on to be a sponsor with Real Food Media! Like all of the giveaways done with my sponsors I will be receiving a small compensation for hosting this giveaway.
This contest will end Tuesday, November 17th at 11:59 PM PST. The winner will be chosen via random.org, and will be announced on November 19th. The lucky winner will have 48 hours to contact me with his or her full name, address, and phone number. You must live within the United States to enter this contest.