Family

How to keep your energy up when you're caring for a new baby

Postnatal advisor Sharlene Poole says we need to look after ourselves to ensure we have enough energy to look after 
our little ones.

Postnatal advisor Sharlene Poole has been helping parents to care for their babies for more than 20 years, and last year became a first-time mum herself. Here, she gives advice on how to look after yourself so that you have enough energy to look after your little one.

Postnatal advisor Sharlene Poole with her son George.
Postnatal advisor Sharlene Poole with her son George.

  • I've always encouraged parents to eat well, consume less sugar and eat healthy food that fuels energy, especially breastfeeding mums. I liken new mothers to race horses or athletes – they need good protein and slow-releasing carbs alongside plenty 
of fruit and vegetables.
  • Get out in the fresh air and take daily walks where possible. Morning walks are great but I find that in the afternoon, when you are starting to feel shattered, instead of filling up on sugar or caffeine, 
a 10-30 minute walk or a nap can help.
  • Routine for you, your baby and family is a great tool for coping and providing mental energy.
  • Ask for help, especially if you have babies or children not sleeping. Thinking that "it will get better soon" is not proactive – often things won't get better in time for you to be rested and energised enough to enjoy parenting and be the best parent you can be.
  • I find a cup of miso or a vege juice is a brilliant and easy energy booster alongside a 10-minute cat nap, if possible. I also like to use a naturopath for advice on what I need personally.

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