Read more about the studies of migraines and magnesium HERE
Learn more about electrolytes and my recommendations HERE
Grab my Adrenal Smoothie recipe HERE
Grab your free mineral download HERE
If you’re currently pregnant or postpartum, you know that your default state of being is tired. It just comes with being a mom, right?
So it’s natural to assume that being physically drained and depleted is also normal, right?
Well, I’m here to tell you that there is a difference between being tired from being a mom and being tired period. In other words, there is a big difference between being tired from living mom life and being tired from existing as a human being.
“But Brooke, how can I possibly tell the difference? Aren’t those the same thing?”
NO. N-O. I will tell you from both evidence-based science and personal experience that there is a major difference between the two and I’ve lived on both sides. I’ll do my best to describe both of them to you so you can understand the difference.
If you are tired from existing, you are most likely experiencing the effects of mineral deficiencies. Minerals are micronutrients that our bodies need to function and thrive on a cellular level.
When you have insufficient levels of each mineral, it’s like your body trying to run on one or two cylinders. You might have enough gas (from eating food each day) but without enough minerals it doesn’t matter how much gas you have in the tank, you’re still only firing one or two cylinders instead of four.
How can you tell if you’re experiencing mineral deficiencies? Let’s look at 6 of the most common symptoms that you experience if you’re low in minerals:
Now, you could have some or all of these symptoms but the important thing is recognizing and not diminishing them. I’m not talking about the occasional headache from your ponytail or yelling at your kids. I’m talking about recurring headaches that affect your daily life and don’t go away with medication or caffeine.
Now if you were listening and you were like “oh my gosh I can’t possibly remember all those foods” and I just stressed you out more, don’t worry. I’ll simplify it for you right now! Here are the main food groups that will get you the majority of your minerals:
Now if you’re still like “Brooke I won’t remember all of those and I already struggle with my diet every day” DON’T WORRY MY FRIEND. I put together a free printable resource for you that you can download straight to your phone!
I include some of the basic points from today’s episode, as well as my mineral-rich foods cheat sheet and two different “habit trackers” that you can print and use to help you get your minerals in each day.
In fact, those “habit tracker” worksheets that I included are the exact ones that I use with my clients and I’m sharing them with you for free!
Just head to the shownotes to download your copy! You can either scroll down in your podcast player in the episode description or head to thewellnourishedmama.com/podcast/5
Now, we did talk about the 10 minerals you need, but I want to especially touch on the electrolytes because they’re kind of their own category. You could be great with all the other minerals but struggle with electrolytes and still see some of the symptoms I mentioned at the beginning.
Sodium: Sodium is the counterpart of potassium; it's main job is to regulate fluid levels outside our cells.
Contrary to popular belief and what you hear on the news, sodium is actually quite important for your body. You need sodium to maintain cellular homeostasis, or in other words, fluid balance.
This fluid balance affects the total water distribution in your body, which then affects your blood pressure.
Sodium also helps transport other vital nutrients into your cells like amino acids, glucose, and vitamins, all of which you need to function and grow another human being.
Lastly, salt makes your food taste good!
That being said, it's easy to get too much sodium in your diet because of processed foods, so the best way to get enough sodium (and the nourishing kind of sodium) is to prioritize making food at home, limiting packaged or processed foods, and using a high quality salt like Redmond Real Salt.
Potassium: Potassium's main role in the body is to regulate fluid levels inside our cells. The amount of fluid inside our cells and what can get inside our cells determines their electric charge and how effective they are in transmitting energy to our body.
Low potassium levels affect nerve transmission and muscle function throughout your body, including your heart. During pregnancy, your blood volume increases by up to 50% (PMCID: PMC4928162), so your heart has to be extra efficient and energized to take care of the extra demands.
In addition, potassium can help lower blood pressure because it helps remove excess sodium.
Magnesium: Magnesium is required for more than 600 enzymatic reactions in the body like synthesizing amino acids, managing blood sugar levels, and regulating blood pressure.
Calcium: Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and is stored primarily in the bones, but does a lot more than just make strong bones. Calcium is also responsible for blood vessel dilation and contraction, blood clotting, and hormone secretion.
Because calcium can only come from your diet, it's important to get enough calcium each day, especially during pregnancy. If you don't get enough calcium, your body will steal from the reserves in your bones.
Something important to keep in mind is that vitamin D is required for calcium absorption, so spending time in the sun each day is a great way to increase your calcium absorption naturally.
If you want to learn more about electrolytes specifically, I wrote an entire blog post about it! I also did a meta analysis of 21 of the top electrolyte supplements on the market and gave you my recommendations for the best and warned you of the tricky ones.