First Forty Days Cheat Sheet

Cooking rice

As you embark on the beautiful journey of raising a newborn, it's so important to remember to take care of yourself as well, especially during the first forty days after giving birth.

Heng Ou's insightful book, The First Forty Days: The Essential Art of Nourishing the New Mother, offers a profound guide on nourishing your body during this crucial time. The wisdom from this book is part of the inspiration behind Mama Meals and the foundation for our recipes!

Understanding The First Forty Days

The First Forty Days beautifully outlines a comprehensive approach to postpartum nutrition, emphasizing the healing power of whole, nutrient-dense foods. Drawing from time-honored cultural traditions, it underscores the significance of nurturing the mother's body during this sacred phase of life. In short, the days following birth are a time to restore, heal, and replenish after the miraculous journeys of pregnancy and childbirth.

The Importance of Postpartum Nutrition

Proper nutrition during this period can speed recovery, increase energy levels, and improve lactation for breastfeeding mothers. It’s a precious time to honor your body, embrace rest, and indulge in the healing power of nutritious meals. And don’t forget, hydration is essential as well! Drink plenty of clean water throughout the day, especially if breastfeeding.

Your First Forty Days Cheat Sheet

We've created a FREE, simple cheat sheet based on The First Forty Days by Heng Ou's philosophy to help guide your meal planning during the first six weeks after birth for optimum postpartum nourishment.


soups, stews, broths, stewed fruits salads, raw vegetables
warm cooked grains crunchy crackers, chips
chicken, slow-cooked lamb, beef/bison heavy meats, like steak
custards, steamed puddings ice cream, sorbet, gelato
warm milk, soft goat cheese, unsweetened whole-milk yogurt, hard cheese sweetened skim yogurt, sweetened kefir
fish, including oily fish, sea vegetables (sardines, mackerel, herring)
avocados, coconut, olives (whole foods or oils) processed and refined cooking oils (canola, sunflower)
seed, nut oils (sesame, hemp oils)
fat-stirred into everything (grass-fed butter, coconut oil, coconut milk, ghee)
warming ginger, cinnamon, cumin, turmeric
herbal teas and infusions strong caffeine, coffee
kombucha and other naturally fermented non-alcoholic beverages wine and beer (use in moderation) avoid liquor


 Don’t Have Time to Meal Prep?

Let us do the cooking for you! We invite you to check out our line of warm, nutrient-dense, organic, gluten-free, non-GMO meals made fresh using the highest quality ingredients, frozen fresh and delivered straight to your door!

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