A nutrition expert we love talks to us about conceiving, breastfeeding and so much more
June 07, 2017
Arielle Haspel was talking nutrition to a group of expectant moms at a Well Rounded event in NYC when we first met her. Her positive energy and charisma were contagious. Plus, we couldn't get over how AMAZING she looked just a few weeks after giving birth - total mom envy!
She talks to us about her fit & healthy pregnancy, what she did to lose her postpartum belly and how she overcame the fertility "challenges" that many women face. Her outlook and philosophy on life are truly inspiring.
1) I first met you 3 weeks after you gave birth to your baby Gemma and you had no postpartum belly! Please do tell, moms all over the world would like to know your secret.
I can’t say it’s a secret, but I will say that as soon as I gave birth, I treated my body with the same love and care while pregnant (and to get pregnant). The morning that I gave birth, I ate hard boiled eggs and sipped on a smoothie that I had delivered to the hospital. For lunch, I ordered a grass fed cheese burger wrapped in collard green, topped with a gluten-free bun and a side of sweet potato fries. I focused on how I wanted to feel and after 40 hours of labor (with a cute new, delicious baby in my arms), I wanted to feel good!!
When I got home, I made sure to start up my routine again. Everyday, I eat breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up and snack on protein and fiber every 2-3 hours to stabilize my blood sugar and amp up my metabolism. I also drink at least 8 ounces of water or broth in between each feeding session to assist with my milk production.
I make feeling good my priority because the better I feel, the happier I am and the better mom I can be. The flat belly came along with it:)
2) By the way, I love your daughter's name, Gemma. How did you pick it?
I knew I wanted a name related to nature or jewelry (I have a wellness jewelry company - theilovemecollection.com). My husband and I both loved Skye for the middle name so that was set. And then my sweet nurse at the hospital was named Jemma. It was a name on our original list and just felt exciting and right. Turns out the restaurant at the hotel where we had our first date was named Gemma so it was definitely meant to be.
3) You're a first time mom and breastfeeding. Any surprises that you weren't exactly prepared for after having Gemma?
What surprised me the most was the patience and determination I needed to get my milk supply in. During my first appointment with the pediatrician, the doctor said that if Gemma didn’t gain weight by the next day we would’ve needed to give her formula. The pressure was on! So when we left the office, I went on a breastfeeding marathon. My husband ran out and rented a pump and for the next 24 hours I breastfed Gemma every 2 hours and then pumped after each feed. In between, I sipped on Guinness, mama's milk tea, lots of water and bone broth. I also put heating pads on my breasts to help the milk flow (and tons of nipple butter). By the next day, Gemma gained weight, so I was able to continue to breastfeed. It was an intense day to say the least so I was very grateful that my hard work, determination and sore nipples paid off!
4) Many women today are facing infertility issues. Can you tell us what you did to increase your fertility before getting pregnant?
Well, first, the best advice I got from my good friend and acupuncturist, Aimee Raupp, was to remove the word “infertility” from my vocabulary. Referring to myself as “infertile” was really depressing and limiting. Instead, I referred to it as “fertility challenges” and that helped to lighten up the entire experience for me.
From then on, I found doctors and practitioners that were positive and who gave me hope. Also, each morning, I focused on what was going to make me happy and bring me feelings of joy. I focused on my wellness and the ways in which my body was working. I envisioned my belly growing. I treated myself well with nourishing foods (grass-fed meat, coconut oil and cooked veggies). I took fertility-enhancing supplements that were customized for my body. I even surrendered and went on thyroid medication to boost my levels. I cleaned my bed side stands so I could get deeper sleep. I made space physically, emotionally and mentally for a happy baby to come into my life and that’s ultimately when I got the positive pregnancy test.
Here are more tips in how I prepared my body for a healthy and fit pregnancy:
5) You're a nutrition expert and pride yourself on cooking without depriving yourself. How do you make time for healthy meals now that you have a newborn?
It definitely isn’t easy to find the time to make meals, so I try to make it as easy as possible! One thing I love to do is I make a HUGE batch of bone broth once a month and then I put in in freezer-friendly containers. For breakfast, all I need to do is heat it up and whisk in two eggs and voila! I let it cool while I change her diaper and then, I sip on it room temp while I breastfeed. It’s super nourishing and the protein in the eggs make me feel grounded and energized to begin the day.
What are your top 3 easy & healthy recipes for new moms:
• Warming bone broth with scrambled egg for breakfast
• Quick salad (i rip up lettuce with my hands and quickly chop up other veggies) and then top it with sliced chicken sausage that takes less than 5 minutes to cook on a pan.
• Toaster-oven pizza. For my recipe see here.
6) Your skin and hair look luminous. A lot of that is the result of a healthy lifestyle but could you give us your top 3 beauty product picks? And your beauty routine too.
For my skin I love using Aimee Raupp Beauty Nourishing Oil in the morning. I massage it onto my skin after I wash my face, right before I put on my makeup. At night, I use aroma-free organic coconut oil.
For my hair I only wash and dry it one to two times per week and I use dry shampoo in between. I also try to massage my scalp or brush my hair every night before I go to sleep.
7) You're an entrepreneur and have a successful career. You had mentioned that you've made mistakes when starting your own business. Can you touch on one of these mistakes and what you've learned?
I have a wellness jewelry collection, called “The I Love Me Collection." It's a collection made of open heart rings, necklaces and earrings which are stamped with “I love me” as a reminder of self-love and self-care. Once the rings and necklaces became popular, my customers were asking for more designs. Upselling and adding to a collection is ideal for a successful business. So, I ended up designing earrings. I produced a TON of final product and after I started wearing them, I realized that the design didn’t work. My mistake? I got so excited and rushed into creating a ton of them without testing them on customers first. The lesson? Ask what people want. Test it out on those people. Ask for feedback. Improve it. Don’t rush it. Improve it again. Try to perfect it. Take a deep breath. And then assess if it’s worth proceeding.
8) When you feel like you're doing a lot or that life is becoming a little too stressful what do you say/think to yourself to ease your mind?
These are my mottos: “what can this challenge teach me?” and “Things are always working out. Everything always works out for me”
9) On the phone you had mentioned the Snoo has saved you because your baby sleeps 12 hours a night. Please share your top 5 product picks for new mothers:
Yes, The Snoo is amazing!! My husband and I were very skeptical of it until we started to use it. It’s a smart sleeper that lightly rocks the baby throughout the night. It also has a microphone attached to it that detects the baby’s cries. The first night we used it, Gemma slept 6 hours (she was 3 weeks at the time). By the time she was 5 weeks old, she started sleeping through the night. I’m so so grateful for Dr. Harvey Karp who invented it and the incredible research and technology that went into it - it’s been a postpartum life saver and I honestly don't know what we would have done without it!!
Other post-baby products I can’t live without:
• Travel size white noise machine. I have one for the stroller and one for her room. Doesn’t take up space and it soothes her to sleep for naps and at night)
• All natural nipple butter. This saved my nipples the first few weeks of breastfeeding because they were so sore. I don’t need it as much now for my nipples, but I use it on Gemma when she has dry patches or tiny cuts on her face from her nails.
• Water bottle with vitamin storage. I get so thirsty from breastfeeding so I bring this with me everywhere. I like this one because it has a compartment for vitamins to remind me to take them.
• Dry shampoo. Best mom hack ever when you don’t have time to wash and dry your hair everyday!
For more nutrition and lifestyle inspiration, check out Arielle website and follow her on Instagram.
Thanks for sharing these great tips and advice! xoxo, Peggy