Friday, September 14, 2012

{The Brewer Diet}

The diet is based on 2 eggs and a quart of milk a day, plus an additional 60-80 grams of protein.  The diet totals an intake of 2600 calories per day.  This diet is considered adequate to help mom and baby meet the requirements for a healthy pregnancy.  Although there are a variety of protein choices available, quality, lean meat can quickly get expensive.  Milk and eggs are fabulous sources of not only protein, but also other important nutrients for mom and baby during pregnancy plus they are very affordable to even the most tight budgets.

The Brewer diet emerged contrary to common practices of the time.  It came during a different era than we know now, but one that has greatly effected the way many, both moms and health-care providers approach nutrition during pregnancy.  (Ironically, this was the era I was also conceived).  It was a time when Dr.'s felt fluids, salt, and weight gain must be restricted. 

Not being alive at the time, I'm curious if his research and publications fell on deaf ears or if he was a pioneer in pushing for a (generally) more flexible health-care support system to allow Mom to eat until satisfied and salt to taste.  Regardless of his rejection or welcome several decades ago, because of the shift towards restriction, much knowledge about healthy nutrition during pregnancy, in my opinion, was lost. 

Combine this approach to pregnancy nutrition with another growing problem of the quick-fix, highly processed foods for the entire family.  I grew up on mixes and boxes, freezer food you only had to "nuke" in the microwave.  Home cooked was a thing of inconvenience in the home I grew up in because of the time it required, to no discredit of my very, very busy mother.  (Mother of 11 and full-time working mom). 

For many, "cooking from scratch" is a thing of the past, an occasional dabble to be "oohed" and "aahed" over, a novelty, a lost art.  Many from my generation also grew up in homes during an era when many moms went back to work and were not only too busy to cook the way they were raised, but also enjoyed the convenience that these prepared food items brought to their homes.  I was taught to "cook" but have had to learned how to really COOK over the past 7 years of marriage.  The lessons learned over bubbling pots of home made sauces and kneading huge blobs of dough have been lost in my generation.

What I didn't realize during my first 3 pregnancies is how much my cutting corners really did matter.  That I wanted the outcome of good nutrition---of health for myself and my babies, but I didn't realize that I was unwilling to pay the price.  It is the same with many other aspects of our lives in this fast-paced, instant gratification world we live in.  Always on the go and short on time.  As I've spent countless hours studying it out, first with my own diet, and now with my family's diet, I have been shocked to learn that many things I was holding on to were actually lies that needed to be replaced with truth.  I have had to completely relearn things and relearn ways of thinking about and approaching nutrition.

Click HERE for a link to Dr. Brewer's website.

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