Confinement Food refers to the special diet followed by new moms in different nations during the confinement period.
Chinese confinement period:
In Chinese people, the period of confinement is capped at 30 days. This means, all special rules and regulations apply to Chinese moms for 30 days postpartum.
Key components of any confinement diet:
Components of postnatal Chinese confinement food vary from nation to nation. But few components are integral part of confinement diet in any nation. They are:
- Garlic: It is a galactagogue. It helps in increasing breastmilk production. Therefore, is essential for new moms.
- Fenugreek: This too is a galactagogue. Therefore, improves the quality and quantity of breastmilk.
- Turmeric: This herb is an antidepressant. It helps in fighting postpartum depression. Moreover, it helps in prevention of clogging of milk ducts. It helps in reducing inflammation too.
- Ginger: This herb is also a galactagogue and thereby helps in increasing milk production. It also promotes healing after childbirth.
Chinese postnatal confinement diet inclusions:
Apart from the above-mentioned components, Chinese diet postpartum consists of the following:
- Fish-papaya soup for its nutritive value.
- Pork leg soup cooked with groundnuts.
- Bone broth soup.
- Chicken soup.
- Carp soup cooked with beansprouts.
- Herbal soups infused with dried ginger, Chinese Angelica root, Licorice extract, Peach kernel, Szechuan lovage root soup etc.
- Milk is an important component in Chinese postpartum diet as it aids in calcium replenishment.
These soups aim at improving and restoring the blood flow. These also help in preventing prolonged discharge.
Herbs used in Chinese postpartum confinement diet:
- Red Dates (Hong Zao): These are said to improve Qi life and replenish lost blood and nutrients. Mostly used in tea.
- Black Dates (Hei Zao): These are packed with iron therefore help in increasing hemoglobin. These also help in increasing prolactin.
- Du Zhong (Eucommia Bark): It is an anti-depressant and also has anti-inflammatory property.
- Bei Qi or Huang Qi (Astragalus): This herb helps in rebuilding the Qi (energy) lost during childbirth.
- Dang Shen (Condonopsis Root): This helps to increase red and white blood cells. It also helps in increasing the blood platelet count. It has anti-inflammatory property.
- Dried Longan (Long Yan Gan): It helps in preventing postpartum hemorrhages in C-section moms.
- Chinese Wolfberry (Qi Zi): This fruit is full of antioxidants. It helps in fighting free radicals that damage the skin cells. It contains good amount of calcium, magnesium and beta-carotene.
Pregnancy and childbirth are most important phases in the life of every woman. Postpartum care is equally important since a woman losses significant amount of blood during childbirth. So, it is necessary to follow such diets for the well-being of both mother and newborn.