If we had to choose a word to describe how we’ve felt in the post-holiday, height-of-cabin-fever-and-cold-and-flu-season craze that is January, it’s depleted—and chances are we aren’t alone in this.  As we attempt to refill our cup in 2019, we’re going to take some space around here to focus on basic wellness hacks and habits busy moms can easily integrate into their everyday. Upping our vitamin game topped the list.  To get the ball rolling, Associate Editor Lindsey Rickard connected with New Chapter, makers of whole-food vitamins and supplements, to create a custom regimen and understand a little more about what to look for in a vitamin (spoiler alert: shiny hair isn’t part of it).  Here’s how it went:

I’ve always been very into wellness, but when it comes to supplements, much of my focus has gone to my kids’ routines as they’ve grown and stopped nursing.  I am very attuned with what they need, but not necessarily in tune with what I need now that I am not growing or nourishing a baby.  I’ve been a longtime fan of New Chapter, taking their prenatal through both my pregnancies and postpartum. I worked with the brand to create a custom regimen based on my goals:

  • Upping my nutrient intake (how many days in a row can one live off kid scraps?) 
  • Immune Support (hello, cold and flu season)
  • Stress Management (obviously)

Here was the regimen we came up with (added to the fish oil and probiotic I was already taking):
Perfect Calm Multivitamin
Holy Basil Force 
Elderberry Force

I’ve been on this regimen for about a month and feeling great.  I’m still learning how each effects me—for example, the Perfect Calm and Holy Basil together can make me feel a little too zen, and while the multivitamin is fine on an empty stomach, I absolutely need more than a bulletproof coffee to stomach the rest.  I’m fighting a little post-vacay cold, so I’m counting on those immune boosters to come through! 

As for putting together your own supplement regimen, New Chapter’s Educational Director Charlotte Traas shed some light on how to start: 

Generally speaking, what are the 2-3 basic vitamins/supplements you would recommend for moms raising littles? A multi really is essential, but it has to be the right multi. What is the right multi? It’s one your body can recognize, utilize and feel working. Fermentation unlocks nutrients to help your body absorb them, and makes those hard to digest nutrients gentle enough to take on an empty stomach.

Your brain is fat. Not like, fat-fat, but it is the fattest organ in your body, so it needs healthy fats to thrive. Omega 3’s are great, but there’s a whole spectrum of Omega’s that get left out when fish oils are high heat processed. A whole, sustainable, wild Alaskan salmon oil that isn’t high heat processed, like New Chapter’s Wholemega, gives you wide range of fats including natural levels of DHA and EPA that help support your brain and cardiovascular system.

What really separates a vitamin from the pack? Being fermented.  I can’t say it enough. Also, those vitamins that say they just give you the essentials and not the whole spectrum may not have what you personally need. Going for a full spectrum, fermented vitamin made with organic ingredients is a great place to start.

Life with kids means life with germs.  What’s your pick for the ultimate immune booster? A lot of people might think automatically of immune powerhouse Elderberry, and while that’s awesome for supporting your immune system, especially during the winter months, I’m going to go with a probiotic. Why? Well, your digestive system is a real game changer in your body’s overall immune health. 90% of all diseases can be traced back to the gut, and the overall health of the microbiome. So a good defense is the best offense. Prep your microbiome for the invaders and start supporting your immune system through your stomach.

Stress and fatigue can be difficult to manage during the early years of parenting.  Can you suggest some supplements to help? Rhodiola to the rescue! Rhodiola has shown in studies to have an increase in productivity while helping you work under stress.  It’s a fantastic adaptogenic herb with delightful mood and energy support—a must-have for new parents. If you’re looking to wind down, and not wind up, check out Holy Basil. Another adaptogen that helps take the edge off those hard days.

How should mothers go about building their supplement regimen? Should bloodwork and a doctor ever be involved?  Always check with a doctor if you have questions about an herbal supplement or if you’re worried about a medicinal conflict. Building your supplement regimen is deeply personal, as every body is different. So take some time, pay attention to how you feel and don’t take too many new things at once or you won’t know which one is doing what!

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.