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Saturday, 31 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Asparagus with Egg White Sauce

 




Ingredients

  • 200g asparagus
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 tablespoons fresh milk
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • small amount of cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)
  • paprika (garnishing)

Instructions

  1. Blanch asparagus till tender, add lemon juice while blanching. (set aside)
  2. Whisk egg whites with fresh milk with a pinch of salt.
  3. Heat pan with oil on low heat.
  4. Pour egg white mixture in pan and keep stirring till half cooked.
  5. Turn off heat. Add cheddar cheese and give it a minute or two to melt.
  6. Pour egg white sauce over the blanched asparagus.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Garnish with paprika if desired.

Everything Pregnant

Fertility Acupressure (San Yin Jiao)


Instructions

  1. Find your San Yin Jian point a palm away from your inner ankle.
  2. Begin massage by applying pressure with circular clockwise motions for a minute. Then repeat counterclockwise for a minute on your San Yin Jian point.
  3. Gradually increase massage duration as you get more comfortable with it. The longer you endure, the better the result.

Friday, 30 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Creamy baked mashed potatoes






Ingredients


  • 4 potatoes (peeled, diced)
  • 1/2 onion (finely chopped)
  • 50g Parmesan cheese
  • 40-50ml fresh cream
  • 20g butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)

Instructions

  1. Boiled diced potatoes in hot water till soft.
  2. Drain after cooking.
  3. Preheat oven at 240C.
  4. Use a masher or a large fork to mash potatoes.
  5. Add butter, mash till butter melted.
  6. Add Parmesan cheese, mix till all melted.
  7. Add finely chopped onion and mix well.
  8. Add curry powder, salt and pepper for seasoning and mix well.
  9. Pour mash mixture into baking tray.
  10. Bake for 10 minutes or till golden brown.
  11. Serve hot.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Seated Hamstring Stretch

Benefits

  • stretches hamsprings
  • prevents leg cramps
  • promotes blood circulation in lower body
  • relieves sciatica
  • prevents lower-back pain

Instructions

  1. Sit on a floor mat with straight back with right leg straight in front and left leg bent.
  2. Bring the sole of your left foot as close to your groin as you can.
  3. Make sure your hips are seated squarely on the mat.
  4. Reach and hold your right foot with your hands. Use a long towel to help you reach if you are not flexible enough.
  5. Push your tailbone backward to lengthen your spine during step 4.
  6. Hold for 1-3 minutes. Relax and repeat steps 1-5 on the alternative side.



Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Everything Pregnant

Fertility Acupressure (Shenmen)



 

Instructions

  1. Start with your left hand, locate your Shenmen point, begins by applying pressure with circular clockwise motions for a minute. Then repeat counterclockwise for a minute.
  2. Repeat step 1 with right hand.
  3. Massage He gu point follow by Shenmen point on daily basis.

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Baked Ratatouille

Ingredients

  • 2 carrots (sliced)
  • 1 aubergine (sliced)
  • 1 courgette (sliced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (crushed and chopped)
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 100g Parmesan and Mozzarella cheese (or amount as desired)
  • 100g breadcrumb (or amount as desired)
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven at 160C. 
  2. Heat pan with oil and add garlic.
  3. Saute all vegetables until half cooked, add salt and pepper as seasoning.
  4. Arrange half-cooked vegetables in a baking dish. 
  5. Pour chicken or vegetable broth in dish and cover with aluminum foil.
  6. Bake in oven for 15 minutes.
  7. Take baking tray out and sprinkle cheese and breadcrumb as desired.
  8. Remove foil and bake for another 5-10 minutes or till golden.


Monday, 26 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Butterfly Pose

 

 

 Benefits

  • stretches inner thighs, groins and knees
  • massages internal organs
  • helps ease constipation
  • improves blood circulation
  • opens up pelvic, prepare for childbirth

 

Instructions

  1. Sit on a mat with a soft blanket on top.
  2. Bend your knees and bring the sole of your feet together, touching each other.
  3. Inhale. On exhalation. Elongate your spine and keep your back straight.
  4. Breath steadily. Bring your heels as close to your pelvis as possible.
  5. Push the outer edges of your feet firmly into the floor and wrap your hands around your feet or ankles.
  6. Gently push your outer thighs as close to the floor as possible.
  7. You may stay in this possible or start to reach with your arms to the front by reclining your torso forward.
  8. Hold this position for a minute and gradually increase holding time as you feel more comfortable staying longer in this pose, up to 10 minutes at a time.
  9. To exit this pose, draw your knees towards one another and extend your legs.
  10. Relax.

Everything Pregnant

Massaging your Fallopian Tube


Benefits

Up to 25% in female fertility issues are related to fallopian tubes blockage. Blockage can be related to scar tissue, endometriosis, adhesion, pelvic inflammatory diseases, or other sexually transmitted diseases.

Adhesion causing blockage can be broken apart by massaging your fallopian tubes regularly. It is non-intrusive and non-aggressive. It can be done by yourself, your partner or by a professional therapist if you prefer.


Instructions

  1. Relax on a mat on you back with a pillow under your head.
  2. Calm yourself and listen to your breathing.
  3. Locate your fallopian tubes, they are situated 3-4 inches from each side of your belly button.
  4. Apply pressure on your left hand side in clockwise motions. Use massage oil if you feel comfortable.
  5. Massage clockwise for 30 seconds and anticlockwise for 30 seconds.
  6. Repeat steps 4-5 on the right hand side.
  7. If you feel discomfort, it means you have found the problem.
  8. Leave that area for couple days, then repeat steps 4-5 again.
  9. Discomfort should subside gradually as blockage clear up.



Saturday, 24 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Red Pepper Soup

 



Ingredients

  • 3 red peppers (seeded and roughly chopped)
  • 2 onion (chopped)
  • 2 courgette (roughly chopped)
  • 1 clove garlic (crushed)
  • 900ml chicken / vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)

 

Instructions

  1. Heat pot with oil, fry chopped onion and crushed garlic for 5 minutes.
  2. Add red pepper, half portion courgette and fry for another 5 minutes.
  3. Add chicken broth and bring to boil. Simmer on low heat for 20 minutes.
  4. After simmering, pour everything in blender and blend for 30 second to a minute.
  5. Pour content back to pot, add remaining courgette and simmer for 8 minutes.
  6. You may serve this soup with plain yoghurt and some fresh chopped onion.

Everything Pregnant

Fertility Acupressure (He gu)



Start your fertility acupressure practice by He gu pressure point. He gu is located between the thumb and forefinger, in the center of the muscles.

Instructions

  1. Start with your left hand, locate your He gu point, begins by applying pressure with circular clockwise motions for a minute. Then repeat counterclockwise for a minute.
  2. Repeat step 1 with right hand.
  3. Repeat massaging your He gu point on both hands a few times a day for as long as you can for optimum results.


 

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Everything Pregnant

Fertility Acupressure




Chinese has been practicing acupressure for thousands of years for medical treatment. The theory is that the human body is connected with a number of specific points which can channel energy throughout the body into specific point by applying light pressure. By channeling energy into particular points have long been practiced by Acupressure therapist in order to boost fertility.


In the post to follow, I will share a series of acupressure treatment that can be done at home by yourself. Be sure to check back!

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Chicken Curry Fruit Salad


Ingredients

  • 150g chicken breast or thigh (skinned)
  • 1 kiwi (diced)
  • 1/2 apple (cored and diced)
  • 1/2 stalk of celery (diced)
  • 20-30g cashew nuts (roasted)
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 2 lettuce leaves

Salad dressing

  • 3 tablespoons plain yoghurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • salt (seasoning)

Instructions

  1. Pan fry diced chicken til cooked.
  2. Mix all ingredients with cooked chicken apart from lettuce.
  3. Mix all sauce ingredients in another bowl.
  4. Mix 2 and 3 together.
  5. Serve over leaves of lettuce.



Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Baked Peaches with Nuts

Ingredients

  • 2 fresh peaches or apricots
  • 50g walnuts (crushed)
  • 50g almonds (grounded)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

 

Instructions

  1. Roast almonds in oven at 120C till golden brown.
  2. Ground roasted almonds.
  3. Cut peaches in halves and cored. Bath peaches in lemon juice to prevent discoloration.
  4. Preheat oven at 180C.
  5. Fill crushed walnut into the cavity of peaches.
  6. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes.
  7. Dilute honey with water.
  8. Brush diluted honey over baked peaches and bake for another minute or two.
  9. Sprinkle grounded almond over baked peaches and serve.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

The Bridge Pose


This pose is beneficial both during preconception and while you are pregnant.

Benefits

  • opens up chest
  • stretches neck, spine and back
  • opens up pelvic
  • regulates menstruation
  • balances hormones
  • stimulates the lungs, thyroid glands, and abdominal organs
  • reduces backache and headache
 

Instructions

  1. Lie flat on your back on a mat or a thick blanket.
  2. Keep your feet together and soles touching your buttocks with knees bent.
  3. Raise your chin and elongate your spine.
  4. Tug your tailbone in and lift your hips as high as you can manage.
  5. Keep your knees over the ankles, perpendicular to the floor. 
  6. Regulate your breathing and hold this pose for 30 seconds.
  7. Inhale. On exhalation, slowly lower your hips by rolling your spine onto the floor.


 

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Raspberry Pavlova

Ingredients

  • 3 egg whites
  • 120g sugar
  • 100g raspberries
  • 250g fresh cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven at 150C.
  2. Beat egg whites with electric mixer, gradually add sugar as texture stiffen up.
  3. Beat til thick and shiny.
  4. Pour whipped egg white on a baking tray with greased baking sheet on.
  5. Bake for an hour. Set aside and cool down.
  6. In another bowl, beat fresh cream til thick and shiny.
  7. Spread whipped cream on top of cooled down meringue.
  8. Arrange fresh raspberries on top. Serve.


Everything Pregnant

Itchy Tummy

Pregnant tummies may get itchier as your pregnancy progress. As the abdomen expands and stretches, the stretching and dryness of the skin makes it irritably itching. Scratching to sooth the itch might result in scarring and excessive stretch marks. Therefore, use your brain power and stops yourself from scratching those delicate skin on your tummy.

Apply lotions, coconut oil, olive oil, etc, from the start of your pregnancy. Use anti-itching lotion such as calamine or Aveeno to provide relief from itching.

If you itch all over, don't forget to consult your practitioner.


The following article from daily mail is about a rare case of tummy itching resulting in stillborn.

When an itch during pregnancy is a sign your baby is at risk



Monday, 19 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

 Reclining hero pose

 

Caution

Perform this pose only if you are fairly flexible and able to sit on your buttocks between your legs relatively at ease.

Benefits

  • stretches abdomen and massage reproductive organs to boost fertility
  • stretches knees and ankles to prevent cramps
  • improve digestion system by massaging abdomen
  • relieves symptoms of menstrual pain
  • regulate menstrual cycle

Instructions

  1. Sit on your buttocks between your legs.
  2. Inhale. On exhalation, slowing lean your torso back onto the floor.
  3. First, use your hands and arms to support your weight.
  4. Then, slowly lower your pelvis and lower back.
  5. Sink your tailbone onto the floor as much as you can.
  6. Maintain regular breathing and stay in reclining pose for 30 seconds to a minute. Gradually increase to 5 minutes as you feel more comfortable.
  7. To get out from this pose. Support your torso with your arms.
  8. Slowly raise your torso to sitting position.


 

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Turkish Chicken Skewers

Ingredients for Turkish salsa sauce

  • 70g cucumber (diced)
  • 30g celery (diced)
  • 30g tomato (diced)
  • 30g plain yoghurt
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • small amount of dill
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)

Ingredients for chicken

  • 5 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon tomato puree
  • 2 tablespoon yoghurt
  • 1 teaspoon thyme



Instructions

  1. Marinate diced chicken in tomato puree, yoghurt and thyme over night.
  2. Preheat grill for medium-high.
  3. Thread chicken onto skewers.
  4. Grill for about 10 minutes or til cooked. 
  5. Turn over once 5 minutes into cooking.
  6. Mix all ingredients for salsa sauce.
  7. Garnish skewers with dill.
  8. Serve with salsa sauce.


 

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Leg Stretches


Benefits

  • stretches upper and lower legs
  • relaxes leg muscles
  • prevents leg cramps during pregancy
  • relaxes lower back
  • promotes blood circulation in lower body








Instructions

  1. Stand behind a chair and hold onto the back of a chair for balance if necessary.
  2. Grasp your right foot behind you with your right hand.
  3. Pull your heel to the buttocks while extending upper leg backward from your hip joint.
  4. Elongate your spine, keep back straight.
  5. Hold onto your foot for 10 to 30 seconds.
  6. Relaxes and repeat steps 2 to 5 with your left foot and left hand.
  7. Repeat both sides 5 times if you feel comfortable.

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Homemade Sweet Potato Chips

Ingredients

  • 400g sweet potatoes (choose variety of colours)
  • 2 teaspoon olive oil
  • salt (seasoning)

Instructions

  1. Wash and dry sweet potatoes with skin on.
  2. Cut sweet potatoes in very thin slices.
  3. Soak sliced potatoes in cold water for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven at 220C.
  5. Drain and dry thoroughly with kitchen paper.
  6. Mix with olive oil and salt for seasoning.
  7. Arrange slices on preheated baking tray.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Turn chips over and bake for another 15 minutes.
  10. Cool and serve.


Friday, 16 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Shoulder Stretch

Benefits

  • releases tension on your shoulders
  • prevents muscles from tightening
  • warm-up your body for other prenatal exercies

Instructions

  1. Stand up straight with feet at shoulder length apart, knees may be slightly bend if you feel more comfortable.
  2. Hold right arm with your left just below the elbow.
  3. Inhale. On exhalation, pull elbow toward the opposite shoulder.
  4. Hold each stretch for 10 seconds or longer.
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 for alternative arm.
  6. Relax and repeat 5-10 sets.


Thursday, 15 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Black Sesame and Almond Oatmeal




Ingredients


  • 40g old fashioned oatmeal
  • 300ml water
  • 250ml fresh milk
  • 1 tablespoon black sesame
  • 1 tablespoon ground almond
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Instructions

  1. Boil water. Add oatmeal and cook on medium heat til thicken.
  2. Stir in fresh milk, black sesame, ground almond and honey.






Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Everything Pregnant

What is miscarriage?



Spontaneous loss of a pregnancy in the first 20 weeks of gestation is defined as miscarriage. According to American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), about 15 to 20 percent of pregnancies end in miscarriage. The actual figure could be as high as 30 to 40 percent since many women miscarry before realizing being pregnant.



According to American Pregnancy Association (APA), the most common cause of miscarriage is chromosomal or genetic abnormality in the embryo. It is something that we cannot avoid, but there are other factors that we should be more cautious with:

  • excessive alcohol intake
  • cigarette smoking
  • drugs abuse
  • a serious car accident or big fall from climbing
  • listeria infection found in uncooked meat and dairy products
  • hormonal imbalance in mother, such as low progesterone levels or uterine fibroids
  • mother aged 35 or over
  • infections such as Lyme or Fifth disease
  • chronic illnesses such as uncontrolled diabetes, lupus, or thyroid disease

Signs of miscarriage

Some women experience some or none of the following signs:

  • spotting or bleeding accompany with cramps or pain in the lower abdomen
  • pain in the lower abdomen for over 24 hours without bleeding
  • heavy bleeding or continuous spotting for 2 to 3 days
  • passing tissues or clots like material
  • loss of pregnancy symptoms such as nausea or vomiting
 

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Palm Tree Pose




Benefits

  • stretches and strengthens your torso
  • stretches your back
  • relaxes your shoulders
  • stretches your upper and lower back







Instructions 

  1. Stand straight with feet together.
  2. Inhale, on exhalation, raise both arms together from your sides.
  3. Keep arms straight on the sides of your head and clasp hands together.
  4. Keep both feet on the floor. 
  5. Stretch slowly and gently to the right. Breath steadily.
  6. Then, stretch slowly and gently to the right as if you are swaying like a palm tree by the beach.
  7. Sway back to the center and stand straight.
  8. You may bring a foot up to the side of your knee and turn this pose into the Tree Pose.
  9. Stay in pose for 10 seconds. Lower your foot and relax.
  10. Bring the other foot up to the side of your knee and repeat steps 7-8.
  11. Lower your foot and relax your arms.

 

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Chicken Apple Burgers 


Ingredients

  • chicken breast (skinned and cut into chunks)
  • 1 potato (peeled and grated)
  • 1 onion (peeled and grated)
  • 1 apple (cored, peeled and grated)
  • 50ml chicken stock or 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • handful of parsley (chopped)
  • cornflakes for coating burgers (crushed)
  • black pepper (seasoning)
  • olive oil

Instructions

  1. Squeeze some of the juice out from grated onion, potato and apple. Pour in food processor.
  2. Add chicken and all the rest of the ingredients. (except cornflakes and oil).
  3. Blend for 10-15 seconds.
  4. Scoop out content and shape mixture into 5-8 burgers.
  5. Roll each one in crushed cornflakes.
  6. Heat pan with olive oil and fry burgers on low to medium heat.
  7. You may choose to brush burgers with melted butter and grill in oven or barbeque.

 

Everything Pregnant

Glucose Screening Test


Glucose screening test is a routine test in most civilized countries nowadays. At 28 weeks, your practitioner will ask you to take this test to screen for gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes affect 1 to 2 % of expectant mothers, making it the most common pregnancy complication. Don't get too worried even if you were told that you do have gestational diabetes. You will most likely be assigned a nutritionist who will guide you through a healthy diet and exercise suggestions in order to monitor your weight. Women with gestational diabetes have no problems in yielding healthy babies by following guidelines given by practitioners and nutritionists.

Procedure for Glucose Screening test

You will not need to fast or do anything differently before or after this test. You will be ask to drink a glucose concentrated drink and be taken blood sample an hour afterwards to check your blood glucose level.

If your blood glucose result comes back higher than normal, you will be asked to take a glucose tolerance test to confirm.

Glucose Tolerance Test

You will need to fast at least 8 hours before taking the tolerance test. You may drink water only but not consume any food at all for accurate test result. You will be given another glucose concentrated drink and taken blood sample for test before and an hour after drinking in order to check your blood glucose tolerance level.


What is Gestational Diabetes?

It is a temporary form of diabetes in which your body cannot produce adequate amounts of insulin to handle with your creased blood sugar of pregnancy. It is more common in mothers-to-be who are aged 35 or over and it almost always disappeared after delivery. This condition can easily be managed through healthy dieting, regular exercises and weight control, and it usually has little affects on mothers and babies if monitor closely.
If left untreated and ignored, allowing excessive sugar to circulate in your blood and into fetal circulation through the placenta. Both mother and baby could be in serious troubles. Mothers who ignore this condition and healthy dieting are at risk of producing over-sized baby, as well as for developing preeclampsia (pregnancy induced hypertension). Giant babies are usually accompanied by many neonatal health issues, therefore, follow dieting guidelines and DO NOT ignore the condition.

(data from What to expect when you are expecting)

 

Monday, 12 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Corn Souffle

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 ears of corn (200g kernels)
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 170g evaporated milk
  • 200g cream style corn
  • salt (seasoning)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven at 180C.
  2. Wash and remove kernels from corn. Set aside.
  3. Place eggs, flour, salt and evaporate milk in a food processor and blend for 2 minutes.
  4. Grease souffle dish with butter.
  5. Add cream style corn and fresh corn to egg and milk mixture and stir well.
  6. Pour mixture into souffle dish.
  7. Depending on the size of your souffle dish. Bake for 40 minutes or til a knife inserted comes out clean.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Prenatal Pelvic Tilt Exercise


Strengthen your pelvic by doing pelvic tilt exercise regularly. It is an easy routine to follow that can train up your abs, ease those backaches and sooth your way into an easy labor and delivery. Do the following stand up version between 20 to 38 weeks.


Instructions

  1. Stand up straight with your back against the wall.
  2. Inhale and press the small of your back against the wall.
  3. Exhale and relax your back and spine.
  4. Repeat as many times as you feel comfortable with.

Everything Pregnant

Vegetarian Pregnancy Diet



It is absolutely fine to stay on a vegetarian diet if you are already one. Just like any meat-eating expected mothers, vegetarian mothers-to-be should plan their diet carefully. There are a few guidelines and tips you can follow:

Protein

For those who eat eggs and milk products, you can get adequate amount of protein from dairy products. For vegan though, vegetable proteins will be your only option. Make sure you take at least four-serving protein daily from foods such as legumes, grains, nuts and seeds, etc. Note that 20 to 25mg of protein equals to one serving. Four servings equal approximately 100mg.


Calcium

Same as protein, those who eat eggs and milk have no problem getting their calcium from dairy products. Vegan have slightly more limited choices in this area. Soy beans contain high amount of calcium but beware of their by products which are often loaded with additive such as sugar, corn syrup or honey as sweetener. Check food labels for calcium content and additive. Tofu can only be counted as calcium only if it has been coagulated with calcium. You could also consider calcium fortified juices or some brands of corn tortillas. The recommended daily calcium intake during pregnancy is four servings. Vegetarian calcium rich foods such as soy milk, fortified rice milk, tofu, broccoli, collard greens, kale, mustard and turnip greens, corn tortillas, etc.


Vitamin B12

B12 are mainly found in animal foods, therefore, vegetarian and vegan mothers-to-be should take a vitamin supplement that includes B12 as well as folic acid and iron.

Vitamin D

Meat-eating mothers-to-be can get their vitamin D from fish liver oils. Though sunbathing is also a good source of vitamin D but as the weather can be unpredictable (especially in the UK), and too much sun causes skin cancer, an alternative source should be considered. For vegan, you can get your daily vitamin D from fortified soy milk. Beware that too much vitamin D can be toxic to the body, the daily recommended amount for pregnant women is 600IU.










Sunday, 11 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Cashew Nuts Vegetarian Meat Balls



Ingredients

  • 1 onion (finely chopped)
  • 180g mushroom (chopped)
  • 150g cashew nuts (blended in food processor)
  • 80g wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 30g butter
  • 50ml vegetable stock

Instructions

  1. Heat pan with oil. Saute onion in butter til soft.
  2. Add mushroom and cook for 3 minutes.
  3. Mix blended cashew nuts with breadcrumbs.
  4. Add nut mixture to pan and stir in vegetable stock.
  5. Mix well and form about 15 walnut-sized balls with mixture.
  6. You may roll balls in breadcrumbs again.
  7. Heat pan with oil. Saute balls til golden brown.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Reduce strains in buttocks with a massage

 




Get your partner to massage gently into the bone at the base of your spine, it can reduce straining on the buttocks during pregnancy.

Instructions


  1. Lie side way on a mat. Place a pillow or cushion on your head and between your legs. Place one under your armpit if it makes you feel more comfortable.
  2. Alternatively, sit on a chair leaning on the back of the chair. Choose a resting position most comfortable for yourself.
  3. Partner use fist to gently apply pressure at the base of your spine. 
  4. You should tilt your pelvis slightly during the massage.
  5. Massage ONLY on both sides of the spine. Stay AWAY of the spine itself to prevent unwanted injury. 
  6. Don't massage as far as the tailbone area. 
  7. You should not feel any pain or discomfort at any time. Massaging is about relaxing and getting comfortable. Stop immediately if you feel otherwise.

Everything Pregnant

Childbirth Pain Relief

 

 

Natural pain relief 

  • Relax in a bath or pool may help ease pain caused by contractions. Make sure water temperature stay below 37C. 
  • Keep moving and change positions in between contractions, such as standing, sitting, leaning, lying down, even walking.
  • Hypnotherapy in childbirth. Hypnotherapist guides you through an easy and comfortable birth through relaxation, meditation and visualization.
  • Try sitting on a crouching positions or kneel down on all fours during contractions.
  • Distract yourself by reading, watching TV, engaging in a conversation, etc.
  • Acupuncture by an acupuncture specialist. It works by inserting fine needles through your skin at various pressure point over your body. Studies shown that acupuncture have successfully reduced pain during labor and delivery.

 

Childbirth Medication

Each woman handles childbirth different with different levels of pain and tolerance. Should you feel the need for pain relief medication, don't be afraid to ask. Here are a few options to consider:

 

Entonox

Commonly known as gas and air is a combination of oxygen and nitrous oxide. It is usually the first choice of pain relief during active labor provided by hospital or childbirth centre. It is taken through a gas mask or a mouthpiece with slow breaths. Gas should be inhaled 5 to 10 seconds before each contraction for optimal pain relief. It is easy to use, but inhaling too much too fast makes you feel sick or light-headed. Keep calm and breath in the gas naturally will be the best.

 

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) 

Used in NUS across the UK. TENS uses electrodes to stimulate the nerve pathways to the uterus and cervix. You are given a hand-held device to control the strength of current sending electrical impulses through pads taped to you back. It is most useful during early stages of labor.


 

Epidural

It is a regional nerve block injected directly into your spine in order to numb the nerves connecting to your brain. It is one of the most effective pain relief in modern days and the side effects include:
  • headache
  • sore back afterwards lasting couple days
  • low blood pressure in rare cases
  • increase labor time
  • extra interventions needed for the actual birth


 

General anesthesia

It is only used during emergencies since it puts you out during the birthing process and prevents you from seeing your child immediately after birth.

 

Morphine

It is a strong opiate pain relief derived from opium or poppy plant. It is usually offer in the early stage of labor through injection to help you cope with strong contractions pain. If taken late in labor, it may affect your baby's breathing and drowsiness for several days after birth.





Saturday, 10 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Stir-fried Chicken with Mango

Ingredients

  • 300g chicken fillet
  • 300g mango
  • 30g red and green pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves (crushed and chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon mashed apple
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 100ml water


Instructions

  1. Cut chicken fillet into stripes and marinate in soy sauce, lemon juice and sugar at least 30 minutes before cooking.
  2. Cut red and green pepper and mango into stripes. Set aside.
  3. Heat pan with oil, add crushed garlic and chicken stripes.
  4. Stir-fry for 3 minutes.
  5. Add red, green peppers, apple mashed, sugar, soya sauce and water.
  6. Stir-fry for 5-8 minutes or til chicken is cooked.
  7. Turn off heat. Stir in mango and serve.


Everything Pregnant

Boost your fertility with a massage

 



Massaging your ovary regularly increases your chance of conceiving successfully. Ovary massage promotes blood circulation and brings oxygen to the ovaries which helps regulating ovulation and egg production. As well as regulating ovulation, massaging your ovaries also relieves ovulation pain and twisted fallopian tubes.

 

 

Massaging the ovary

 

Instructions

  1. Relax on a mat on you back, calm yourself and listen to your breathing.
  2. Locate your ovaries about 4 inches below your navel and 3 inches in each side to find the exact location of each ovary.
  3. Place a towel under your head and a pillow under your lumbar region. 
  4. Lubricate and rub your hands with massage oil to warm your hands up.
  5. Apply pressure with your fingers and hands on your ovaries.
  6. Gently and slowly circle the area clockwise on each side.
  7. Continue for 10 minutes and gradually increase to 30 minutes as you get more used to this routine.
  8. Relax on your back after a session.

Friday, 9 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Coriander Tea

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • few fresh coriander leaves
  • hot water



 Instructions

  1. Add coriander seeds and leaves in a cup, pour in boiling hot water.
  2. Brew for 5 minutes with lid on before drinking.

Everything Pregnant

Edema during pregnancy


Edema during pregnancy is water retention while you are pregnant. Doctors now recognize that mild edema during pregnancy is completely normal. It is due to the increase of body fluids while you are pregnant and 75 percents of women develop some kind of edema in their pregnancies. Avoid and follow the following suggestions.


Avoid


Natural cure
  • Don't stand for a period of time.                                              

  • Don't sit without elevating your feet for too long.

  • Don't wear high heels, unless you are Victoria Beckham. According to David Beckham, she goes to the gym in heels.

  • Don't wear elastic-top socks or stockings.

  • Don't wear tight shoes, buy new ones if necessary.

  • Don't get dehydrated.

  • Stay away from caffeine.

  • If swelling persists for more than 24 hours at a time, contact your practitioner.
  • Lie down on your back with a pillow under the feet.                

  • Sit down with feet elevated.

  • Sleep on your life side for better blood circulation.

  • Wear comfortable shoes.

  • Exercise regularly to promote healthy blood circulation. 
     
  • Wear support panty hose.

  • Drink more fluid to flush out excess water retention in your body.

  • Easy on your salt, excessive salt intake leads to water retention.

  • Make hot tea with coriander leaves, it's a natural remedy for reducing swelling.

  • Wear loose clothing.          

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipes

Mushroom stuffed Tomatoes

Ingredients

  • 4-6 large tomatoes
  • a pound of mushrooms (finely chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (peeled and chopped)
  • 50g butter (melted)
  • 30g fresh cream
  • parmesan cheese (to be grated on top)
  • fresh parsley (for garnishing)
  • salt and pepper (seasoning)  
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven at 200C.
  2. Cut off the top of tomatoes horizontally.
  3. Scoop out the inside of each tomato.
  4. Heat pan with butter, stir-fry the scooped out tomatoes meat and add garlic. Then cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add chopped mushroom and cook for 10-15 minutes or til mushroom turns dark brown.
  6. Add cream and cook on medium heat till contents starts to dry.
  7. Add salt and pepper for seasoning.
  8. Turn off heat. Add breadcrumbs and stir well.
  9. Fill each tomato with mushroom stuffing.
  10. Grate parmesan cheese on top of the stuffing.
  11. Place tomatoes on baking sheet.
  12. Bake in oven for 5-10 minutes or til the tops are browned.

Everything Pregnant

Constipation

It is one of the first signs of pregnancy since your body tries to absorb as much nutrients as possible from your food intake. What its left becomes dried and hard to pass out.

Constipation may continue throughout your pregnancy due to the affect of your pregnancy hormones wreaking havoc as they cause the muscles in your bowels to relax on the job in order to have more time to make the most of your food.

But don't be discouraged by theses facts. Irregularity can be override by taking the following measures, which can also help ease another common pregnancy symptoms, hemorrhoids.

Increase fiber intake

Substitute as much refined foods with whole-grain ones as you can. Vegetables and fruits are best eaten raw, make sure they are washed thoroughly as many of today's vegetables and fruits are contaminated with pesticides. Choose organic whenever possible.

Increase fluid intake

Your body have a better chance to flush out its waste with sufficient fluid. Most fluids including water, fruit and vegetable juices are very effective in softening stool and keeping food moving in your digestive system. Hot water with fresh lemon slices or prune juice does wonder to ease constipation.

Live and Lactic Culture

Live and lactic culture found in yogurt or yogurt drinks improves digestive system. It keeps your bowel moving in order to fight against constipation.

Go when you need to

Holding your bowel movements weakens your muscles that control them over time. Set your priority right and do the right thing at the right time.

Prenatal supplements

Excessive calcium or iron found in most prenatal supplements may cause constipation. If that is the case, check with your practitioner to find out if you can modify your supplement formula.

Exercise and stay fit

Don't stop exercising just because you are pregnant. Unless on doctor's order, moderate exercise encourages active bowel movements. Choose an exercise routine that is pregnancy safe and suitable for your life style, walking, yoga, stretching or swimming are all very good prenatal exercises.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Chair Pose

Benefits

  • strengthens upper and lower back
  • strengthens legs
  • stretches carves to prevent leg cramps

Notes

  • suitable in first and second trimester before belly getting too big
  • be caution in third trimester and follow suggested variation



Instructions

  1. Begin with Mountain Pose, feet spreading hip-distance and arms on your sides.
  2. Inhale as you raise your arms above your head.
  3. Exhale as you slowly bend your legs as if you were half sitting.
  4. Elongate your spine and try to reach up high while half sitting.
  5. Palms touching each other or at shoulder width.
  6. Distribute your body weight evenly between both feet.
  7. Tense your buttock and tuck your tailbone in to lessen the curve in lower spine.
  8. Stay in this position for 30 seconds while breathing steadily.
  9. Inhale, lower your arms and straighten your legs on exhalation.
  10. Relax and repeat if you feel comfortable.

Variation


By third trimester, your belly might become a burden during this pose. Place a chair behind you as a guide in case you need it. Try not to sit on it or rely on it as moving object can be dangerous.

You may also practice this pose in front of a table or chair, place your arms in front of your chest, resting on the chair or table instead of above your head to release tension.
Come to stand on your mat with your feet hips-width apart (about two fists distance). Begin to bend your knees as you sink your hips down, as if to sit in a chair. Keep your back straight and long as you angle it slightly forward in order to accommodate the shifting distribution of weight. Sink as far as your leg strength and balance will permit, creating a 90-degree angle between your back and thighs. If shoulder and arm strength permits, reach your arms up over your head, palms face one another at shoulder distance apart. For less intensity, reach your arms out in front of you, palms facing each other or the floor, or bring your palms together at your chest into a prayer-like position. Tuck your tailbone under slightly to lessen the curve in your lumbar (lower spine) and to keep it free from excessive crunching or pain. Breathe as you feel your body’s shifting relationship to gravity and your quadriceps muscles strengthening. - See more at: http://www.babymed.com/prenatal-yoga/prenatal-yoga-chair-pose-utkatasana#sthash.RfQf4rGB.dpuf


Come to stand on your mat with your feet hips-width apart (about two fists distance). Begin to bend your knees as you sink your hips down, as if to sit in a chair. Keep your back straight and long as you angle it slightly forward in order to accommodate the shifting distribution of weight. Sink as far as your leg strength and balance will permit, creating a 90-degree angle between your back and thighs. If shoulder and arm strength permits, reach your arms up over your head, palms face one another at shoulder distance apart. For less intensity, reach your arms out in front of you, palms facing each other or the floor, or bring your palms together at your chest into a prayer-like position. Tuck your tailbone under slightly to lessen the curve in your lumbar (lower spine) and to keep it free from excessive crunching or pain. Breathe as you feel your body’s shifting relationship to gravity and your quadriceps muscles strengthening. - See more at: http://www.babymed.com/prenatal-yoga/prenatal-yoga-chair-pose-utkatasana#sthash.RfQf4rGB.dpuf

Come to stand on your mat with your feet hips-width apart (about two fists distance). Begin to bend your knees as you sink your hips down, as if to sit in a chair. Keep your back straight and long as you angle it slightly forward in order to accommodate the shifting distribution of weight. Sink as far as your leg strength and balance will permit, creating a 90-degree angle between your back and thighs. If shoulder and arm strength permits, reach your arms up over your head, palms face one another at shoulder distance apart. For less intensity, reach your arms out in front of you, palms facing each other or the floor, or bring your palms together at your chest into a prayer-like position. Tuck your tailbone under slightly to lessen the curve in your lumbar (lower spine) and to keep it free from excessive crunching or pain. Breathe as you feel your body’s shifting relationship to gravity and your quadriceps muscles strengthening. - See more at: http://www.babymed.com/prenatal-yoga/prenatal-yoga-chair-pose-utkatasana#sthash.RfQf4rGB.dpuf

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Everything Pregnant

Prenatal weight gain


A healthy weight gain in first trimester should be between 3 to 4 lbs, gaining approximately one pound per week. A further 12 to 14 should be gained in second trimester, making the total weight gained around 14 to 16 pounds at the end of second trimester.

Continue to gain about a pound per week for the rest of the pregnancy should reach a total of 20 pounds towards the end. Weight gained between 20 to 30 pounds is perfectly healthy and normal. It is impossible to control your prenatal weight gain precisely, but between this range should be ideal for an average woman. An underweight mother could gain more and an overweight one should be more cautious.


Breakdown of prenatal weight gain

Baby                                             
 
7.5 lbs
Plaenta

1.5 lbs
Amniotic fluid

2 lbs
Uterine enlargement

2 lbs
Maternal breast tissue

2 lbs
Maternal blood volume

4 lbs
Fluids in maternal tissue

4 lbs
Maternal fat stores
7 lbs

Total average

30 lbs (approximately) 



















(data from What to Expert when you're expecting)

Fertility & Maternity Recipe

Apple and Banana Scones




Ingredients

  • 2 banana (ripe and mashed)
  • 60g unsalted butter (melted)
  • 100g sugar
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten)
  • 125ml fresh milk
  • 240g self-raising flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 apple (cored and diced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven at 180C.
  2. Mix ground cinnamon with apple. Set aside.
  3. Place mashed banana, melted butter, sugar, beaten eggs and milk in a large bowl. Mix with a spatula. Set aside.
  4. Sift self-raising flour, baking soda and powder, together with salt in another bowl.
  5. Gently add flour mixture into banana mixture while stirring with a spatula.
  6. Make sure no lumps are left in the mixture.
  7. Mix in diced apple.
  8. Pour mixture into greased baking cups to 2/3 full.
  9. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or til brown.
  10. Cool on rack for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Boost your fertility with a massage

Since the beginning of time, people have been using massage to assist the body to thrive in different areas. Fertility massage is a non-invasive alternative therapy that can easily be done by yourself at home.

Perform correctly and regularly half an hour before intercourse will increase your chance of conceiving significantly.

Fertility massage focuses on treating scarring, pelvic adhesion, tubal obstruction by promoting the functions of the reproductive organs in both male and female.

Massaging the uterus

 

Instructions

lumbar region
  1. Relax on a mat on you back, calm yourself and listen to your breathing.
  2. Locate your uterus above your pubic bone, below your navel. It is a 3-4 inch organ lying vertically in that area.
  3. Place a towel under your head and a pillow under your lumbar region. 
  4. Lubricate and rub your hands with massage oil to warm your hands up.
  5. Apply pressure on your uterus with your hands and fingers.
  6. Gently move your hands up and down. Massaging from pubic bone to navel. Move back a fro for about 30 seconds.
  7. Apply pressure on uterus and hold for 10 seconds.
  8. Repeat steps 5-6 about 20 times.
  9. Relax on your back. 
  10. Prepare your mind and body for an ovary massage next.

Fertility & Prenatal Exercises

Outer Thigh Stretches

 Benefits

  • strengthens thigh muscles to avoid cramps 
  • reduces pain and stresses in hip joints during pregnancy
  • regular stretches reduces pain in the knees and hips by increasing blood flow and oxygen to legs

Instructions

  1. Lie on your left side. Line up your shoulders, hips and knees in a straight line.
  2. Support your head with your left arm.
  3. Place your right arm in front of your chest to steady yourself.
  4. Inhale, on exhalation, slowly and gently lifting your right leg as high as you can.
  5. Your right foot should be flexed at all time. Keep breathing steadily.
  6. Inhale and slowly lower your right leg and rest on your other leg.
  7. Repeat steps 4-6 ten times. Relax and change to the other side for left leg.
  8. You may do this exercise with leg straight or bent at the knee.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Fertility & Maternity Recipe

Purple Sweet Potato Swirl Loaf

 Ingredients

  • 120ml organic yeast or 1/2 teaspoon dried yeast
  • 300g strong white flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 190ml fresh milk
  • 20g unsalted butter (melted)
  • 100g purple sweet potatoes (cooked and mashed)







Instructions


  1. Place all ingredients in a large bowl, except butter. Mix well with a whisk.
  2. Add melted butter and mix with your fingers, til dough texture becomes elastic.
  3. Divide dough into two portions, one portion weight approximate 270g.
  4. Add mashed sweet potatoes to the 270g portion of dough.
  5. Mix well with your fingers. You may add a tablespoon of warm water to dough if it feels too dry.
  6. Sit both dough in a flat surface covered with cling film. Let it grow til twice the size.
  7. Once big enough, split each dough into two again and let it rest for another 15 minutes. Covered with cling film to avoid drying.
  8. Flatten dough into four long oval sheets. 
  9. Lay them on top of each other and roll all four sheets up.
  10. Place dough roll into baking tin.
  11. Let dough sit in baking tin until it fills up 2/3 of the tin.
  12. Bake in preheated oven at 200C for about 40 minutes.
  13. Leave on rack to cool down and serve.