Fighting fatigue can be frustrating for the average individual but for a new mom, it can seem like a never-ending battle. As new mom energy demands increase, energy reserves seem to decrease even more quickly. And sleep deprivation only adds fuel to the fatigue fire.
If you’re a new mom who is feeling fatigued, you are not alone. Some surveys show that upwards of 67% of new moms report being tired after giving birth, which is not surprising given the infant’s frequent feeding needs and irregular sleep patterns.1 What’s worse, fatigue can increase parenting stress, reduce the mom’s ability to concentrate and communicate clearly, and may even negatively impact the mother-infant relationship.1 Research also shows that fatigue and lack of sleep may even lead to mental health issues for new moms. 2
Fortunately, there are strategies that new moms can use to help protect and support their energy levels after giving birth.
How to Add More Energy
New moms can consider a combination of factors associated with lifestyle, diet, and dietary supplements to support overall energy levels. For example, research shows that regular exercise and drinking chamomile or lavender tea at night may help new moms have more energy throughout their day.2
Because sound sleep is so critical to energy levels, there are many natural ways to safely support sleep including taking melatonin before bed. Research shows that melatonin may help support sleep quantity and quality, as well as the ability to fall asleep quickly.3
Using Food to Fuel Energy
Eating a whole foods Mediterranean-style diet that features fewer unprocessed foods, healthy fats, and clean protein sources will help with energy levels in the long run.4 Because it can be difficult to get all the foods needed to fuel energy from diet alone, you may want to consider taking a whole food multivitamin to help supplement the diet.
In addition, people who aren’t getting enough magnesium in their diet may also feel tired.5 Good sources of magnesium include seeds and nuts, green leafy vegetables, and whole grains.6 Keep in mind that food processing can deplete magnesium so if you are not getting enough magnesium in your diet, you may want to consider taking a magnesium supplement daily.
Through a combination of lifestyle factors such as exercise and sleep, a healthy whole foods diet, and key dietary supplements, women can support their energy levels after giving birth. This comprehensive strategy will help them keep up with the demands of being a new mom while supporting their overall health in the process.
- Iwata H, Mori E, Sakajo A, et al. Course of maternal fatigue and its associated factors during the first 6 months postpartum: a prospective cohort study. Nursing Open. 2018;5(2):186-196. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/nop2.130
- Qian J, Sun S, Liu L, Yu X. Effectiveness of nonpharmacological interventions for reducing postpartum fatigue: a meta-analysis. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth. 2021;2. https://bmcpregnancychildbirth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12884-021-04096-7
- Ferracioli-Oda E, Qawasmi A, Bloch MH. Meta-analysis: melatonin for the treatment of primary sleep disorders. PLoS One. 2013;8(5):e63773. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3656905/?report=reader
- Su Y, Cochrane BB, Reding K, Herting JR, Tinker LF, Zaslavsky O. Mediterranean Diet and Fatigue among Community-Dwelling Postmenopausal Women. J Nutr Gerontol Geriatr. 2022;41(1):22-45. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9835016/?report=reader
- Schwalfenberg GK, Genuis SJ. The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare. Scientifica (Cairo). 2017;2017:4179326. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5637834/?report=reader
- National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. Magnesium Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. 2022;June 2. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/#h3