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Birth classes and birth choices

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hey everyone,

I wanted to know if you all could enlighten me on taking Bradley or Lamaze classes. Is it really necessary? If yes, then how do I know which center I should go to?

What if I decide not to go for these classes? will it still be possible for me to have a natural birth in a hospital? Can I tell the folks in hospitals not to hook me to an IV or fetal monitor?

I am so overwhelmed with these choices....

post #2 of 6
Originally Posted by chetuk3 View Post
Hey everyone,

Hey Chetna,

I was just going to write to this group.. I've been through exactly the same set of questions myself and completely overwhelmed. But I think (THINK) I've finally made the decision - so hold your breath..

So yesterday Dushyant and I went to tour Birth Care http://www.birthcare.org/, a birth center about 7 mins drive from our place (10 in rush hour).. Let me add, we also toured Washington Hospital Center’s delivery facilities last weekend which is touted on local forums as the best place for natural birth amongst hospitals, so we did have good control to compare against.

There were about 10 other couples at Birth Care, (some in their third trimester and looking harried because they “converted” last minute and were way down on the wait lists) … We were near completely bowled over. The practice is well established with 5 midwives. The place is neat (although a little tight in terms of space but that’s standard in the DC area). It’s also in a really nice area in case one wants to walk outside. Of course the whole birth philosophy is drug free / natural which is the biggest attraction – so no hooking up to IVs or fetal monitors unless abs necessary. They have affiliated doctors in a hospital less than a mile and half away who are natural birth friendly. Their rate for episiotomies is <3% and in less than 10% of cases they have needed to transfer to the hospital (of those emergency cases are only a small fraction, the rest being transfers due to prolonged labor and mother’s fatigue/ inability to carry on). Coincidentally, the Bradley classes I am signing up for are also going to take place at the same center (although I discovered the Bradley class much earlier) and the instructor is already affiliated to this Birth Center – she’s a birth assistant here (although she never even mentioned or tried to sell me this place). I will be starting Bradley in Jan. So will probably get much familiar with the place beforehand.

Of course all this depends on various things falling in place. So fingers crossed on two things- one that I stay qualified for an out of hospital birth through the end and two- we’re currently #5 on the waiting list for the birth center- so hopefully we move up and out of that list and join the practice soon.

So all fingers crossed!!!!!

About classes- whoever I have spoken to has recommended taking classes and through my personal research I found Bradley to be the best for me. Also about natural birth, from my tour of Washington hospital, my sense is natural v/s intervention has its shades i.e. it’s not black or white and it totally depends on what your tolerance level is (i.e. do you want pure white or pure black or something a little here and there is okay)… when I was thinking of hospital birth and if we have to go that route eventually, I was thinking of going with a doula who can be an advocate for what I want at the hospital and to a great extent your doc should be on the same page too because hospitals look for nods from docs on a lot of things (like whether you can eat or not, or whether you can take a shower etc!) - Although most hospitals do have different policies and you have to see how they go down with you.

So my suggestion will be TOUR THEM ALL, ask questions and decide soon!

P.S. I do agree that the more you read/ see about this debate, it can seem more and more scary.. so I was debating whether to recommend this or not, but I think it is important just to know what could be in store.. So I decided I'd recommend watching "the business of being born". It's available on netflix.

post #3 of 6
Originally Posted by chetuk3 View Post
just now in my head I heard the voice of Denise Austin saying "You Can Do It" (she makes yoga / pilates videos). That is a good soundbite to carry with you. I also took a cassette player and various tapes along with me. That is another question you can ask. Be wary if they expect labour to be done quietly.
Yes Yes! on Denise Austin.. I have been using her Ultimately Pregnancy Book (which has excellent excercises and pictures of her doing them during her 3 trimesters). If it wasnt a library book I would have taken out the pages and stuck 'em on my walls.... must get. wonderful poses/ reps and 30 minutes of that a day will be really ultimate - you can feel the right muscles getting worked.. I'm sure the videos are even better. (I have been trying HARD to stick a schedule though ).. it has some good recipes too..although I'm not much of a recipe book person..

I'll try to share some recipes soon.. have been thinking about it as I have got increasingly experiemental in the past few weeks and things generally turn out ok..
For vegetarian high-protein recipes, I guess Aravinda needs to write a book... absolutely love those brown rice and akkha urad idlis.. but haven't got around to trying them.at home . Did make podi last weekend and have been consuming it really fast since- great ready food accompaniment and a protein source for those lazy days (and I have plenty of them these days..)... podi also makes well-cooked brown rice taste a lot more heavenly.. have tried with olive oil, unrefined sesame oil and flax oil and even fish oil and of course yogurt- all are great!..

more later...
PS. Bajra roti and clear soup meal recipe to follow.. .
post #4 of 6

high protein vegetarian foods

Originally Posted by ssethi
absolutely love those brown rice and akkha urad idlis
I have posted the recipe

My very first assignment from my childbirth teacher was to note down everything I was eating for a week. I eat whole grains and little or no processed / junk food anyway so there was nothing she had to tell me to cut out. Then we looked up the protein count of each item and added it up. I was getting only 35-40 gms per day. She asked me to go for 75-100, but that was too much for me, so I just worked on increasing it, esp trying to have more protein-rich foods in the beginning of the day. Ragi, soaked almonds, sunflower seeds (with raisins) pesarottu (mung dal pancakes), sprouts, whole grain upma made of cracked wheat (dallia) with peas, peanuts & cashews are all good to have in the morning or for afternoon snacking. So is toast with peanut butter, banana with peanut butter, or yougurt with anything. Can also add peas or tofu cubes to vegetables while stir-frying. I would avoid TVP or "nuggets" unless it is organic.

The hi-protein idli (using 1:1 ratio of rice and urad dal) was one food I ate much more often, plus home-made granola with plenty of nuts. In fact, I baked a big batch of this one and it served me well postpartum. I had it with yougurt and fruits for breakfast every day.

I also sprinkled wheat germ on some dishes. Probably better to have multiple sources and try to expand variety of grains and beans, so that along with protein you are getting plenty of other micronutrients that the various foods have.

Sonika, waiting for the bajra roti recipe!!!
post #5 of 6
Originally Posted by aravinda View Post
I have posted the recipe

Then we looked up the protein count of each item and added it up. I was getting only 35-40 gms per day. She asked me to go for 75-100, but that was too much for me, so I just worked on increasing it
Protein is an issue from a wholly veg diet perspective. Although I am a non-vegetarian, (I eat about 3-5 non veg meals - or part non-veg meals a week), I have many totally veg days and I have been trying to keep track of the protein count myself.. since protein should be at the required level on a daily basis..

my observation is that the quantity in which, at least most north -indians (sorry for the generalization), are traditionally tuned to eat dals - typically one small steel katori per for a meal- just doesn't cut it. One has to have at least 3-4 full small katoris or 1.5 to 2 of the bigger ceramic bowls, then combine it with some whole grain-like min 2 whole wheat chapatis ot 1.5 -2 katoris of brown rice and then some dairy protein like yogurt, butter in dal/ roti etc or an accompaniment like papad (picked that one up at Vimla's place . And then of course you have to have some veggies to finish the meal (if veggies are mixed in dal then need to have bigger servings of dal).. Would also depend on the kind of dal- some may be the heavier, high protein kinds - like beans and others may not be so high-protein. so the quantity would vary based on that.

So bottomline, basically if you're a pure veg then you have to simply eat more. Coz the vitamins you get from meat you can compensate through good veggies and supplements, and carbs and fats take care of themselves thru cravings/ taste buds. But the need for protein does not necessarily manifest in terms of cravings, at least in my experience, so you'd generally not realize how much you're consuming unless you're counting consciously. (and it is also generally more work to prepare/cook proteins of any kind too.. )

Tip: I have started making sure I put good quantities of hing (asfoetida) in my "heavier" dals so I can have more quantity without them giving me stomach issues.

Tip 2- have a second glass of milk before going to bed -for that end of day protien shot - just in case. i have started having warm milk with molasses. very comforting way to end the day.
post #6 of 6
the quantity in which, at least most north -indians (sorry for the generalization),
hey as long as we are generalizing, how about the viscosity of the dal?
I make the dal in a 1:2 ratio (1 cup dal and 2 cups water) just like rice.
You can then scoop it out like ice cream instead of pouring like broth. Eat with rice or spread thickly on a roti and roll it up! Can also top with raita to take care of the "cooling." [try making the raita thicker as well]

And let's not forget hummous! Not only a way to add protein to toast / sandwiches (or maybe even to that bajra ki roti!) but also an easy way to incorporate raw garlic into the diet. You can even put some fresh tulsi leaves on the hummous after spreading on the bread. How's that for immune-boosting! This again may need some balance from the cooling foods - tomato / cucumber slices and such.
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