easy ways to incorporate protein-rich beans into your diet from Real Simple
avocado with dressing is a no-cook meal in itself
try one of these homemade trail mix recipes from Brit + Co to keep your energy up all day long
easy, filling, and nutritious, nut butters are a best friend of the breastfeeding mama
chia breakfast cream via Shape.com

postmodyrn Eats! : Feed Yourself Well, No Cooking Required

Visiting Contributors

Brought to you by Michelle Pfennighaus, Nutrition & Health Coach, Find Your Balance Health

If you haven’t showered today, that’s ok. I swear. I recently went 4 days without washing my hair – a new record. Let’s chalk it up to the priority shift that happens once you bring baby home.  One thing that’s particularly hard to make time for is cooking. (You remember cooking, right?  That big thing in your kitchen that makes heat? Yeah. That.)

Real, clean food makes everyone feel and look their best. But did you know a postpartum body can be extra depleted of nutrients? I mean, no kidding. You just gave everything you’ve got to your baby.  It’s time to replenish yourself.

1. Don't Cook...Avocado

Rich in healthy fats, avocados will keep you feeling full and require no cooking whatsoever.  For a snack, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.

2. Shake Up...Trail Mix

Every new mom I know gets a jar full of homemade trail mix: nuts, seeds and dried, unsweetened/unsulphured fruit. Think walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, apricots and raisins.  Or almonds, pistachios sunflower seeds and goji berries. In the early days of breastfeeding, hunger can strike in the middle of the night. Keep a jar on your bedside table!

3. Cook-Ahead (or don't)...Hard Boiled Eggs

If you don't have the energy to make your own, you can buy these precooked and peeled from Trader Joe’s or your grocery store’s salad bar. Grab one for breakfast, chop ‘em up and make egg salad, or slice and serve over greens with salad dressing.

4. Pop Open...Canned Salmon

Make salmon salad with olive oil or mayo and eat with crackers or over greens.

5. Toss...Boxed Salad Greens

Speaking of salad! Buy it prewashed and ready to go. Spinach is particularly versatile for raw salads, smoothies or throwing into an omelette.

6. Spread...Nut Butters

Banana with peanut butter is your friend. So are carrot sticks with almond butter. You can blend nut butters into a smoothie or eat it straight out of the jar. Nut butters for the win.  Seriously.

7. Rinse...Beans

Canned beans just need a rinse and they’re ready to rock. Add salsa and wrap in a tortilla. Or toss with vegetables and salad dressing. Beans are incredibly versatile, healthy and inexpensive. (They can, however, give breastfed babies gas. Proceed with caution.)

8. Buy...Rotisserie chicken

Every supermarket sells these, right? Bring one home for dinner, then use the scraps to make chicken salad.

9. Scoop...Yogurt

Protein, naturally occurring fats, AND probiotic benefits? Yogurt is awesome. Unfortunately most brands are loaded with sugar. Look for organic, plain yogurt instead. Add fruit, honey, nuts or granola.

10. Steam...Frozen Vegetables

All hail frozen broccoli. And green beans. And carrots. Add them to canned soup to amp up the nutritional value of your meal.

11. Mix...Chia Cream

Mix ¼ cup chia seeds with ¾ cup coconut milk (the thick stuff sold in cans). Let it sit for 10 minutes, then add pure maple syrup or fruit for a sweet, real food treat.

So ditch the frozen pizzas and takeout menus. Don’t stress about cooking complicated gourmet meals. You can fuel your body with the nutrients it needs, even when you’re short on time. Or free hands.

Michelle Pfennighaus, Nutrition & Health Coach, is a mom of 2 boys, ages 4 and 1. She suffered for years with debilitating IBS and anxiety, until finally healing herself through changes in diet and lifestyle. Since then, she has used food as a catalyst to transform the lives of thousands of clients worldwide. Her life’s reinvention has been documented in the movie “Lemonade” and she’s been featured on ABC, NBC and NPR with her inspiring story. Learn more at FindYourBalanceHealth.com.

Photo Credits:  Kevin James Photography // Brit & Co. // Lovely Package // Real Simple // Shape

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