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Discussion Starter #1
Someone just mentioned to me this diet. It calls for 80-120 grams of protein per day and unrestricted salt intake in healthy women, among other things. I know I'm not getting that much protein. Most of my cravings are veggies and cheese lately, but I also know I'm not eating enough to amount to that much protein. Does anyone know anything about this diet? It's specific to pregnancy and was decided by an OB.
 

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I love the Brewer Diet! I've done with all of mine, and I continue through exclusive breastfeeding, too.

What questions do you have?


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Discussion Starter #3
I guess my main question is how am I going to eat that much protein? :laugh: I can't do eggs at the moment and not really craving much meat, either. I drink a bit of organic whole milk, though I'm sure it's not as good as raw. I know that vegetables have protein, too, but about half what meat and dairy do.

I had also read a while ago that protein for women is overrated and that women are getting too much protein. This probably doesn't apply to pregnancy, though.
 

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There is a guide that lays out how many servings of what you should be getting with the Brewer Diet. It's a LOT of food; I followed it with my last pregnancy. The good thing about the amount of food is that it doesn't leave ANY room for junk! It's especially great for anyone who has had or worries about BP/pre-e issues.

It's a pretty solid diet - protein intake is critically important, as is overall calorie intake, so that the protein you're eating is going toward growing a human and not your own metabolic needs. So don't skip on the fat, either. If it's too much food, I'd first skimp on the grain suggestion.

Oh! And I don't know if they make the distinction, but unlimited *sea salt* is great, but I would never tell anyone to do unlimited table salt. Or any, for that matter.

No matter what diet you're following, I think it's a good idea to do a food diary every now and then and look up how many grams of protein you're getting. With the dairy, you might be getting more than you think (1 cup of milk is 8g). Greek yogurt has LOTS of protein, but make sure to go for the full fat kind.

This pregnancy I'm loosely following the Weston A Price pregnancy diet. It's heavy on animal foods, prioritizing eggs, raw dairy, organ meats, bone broth, seafood, beef/lamb, plus fermented foods and fats (4T of butter a day!). It puts a lot of emphasis on food source/quality (pastured, grass fed, etc). It's a high protein, high fat diet by default.


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Oh, and on protein content of vegetables, it's usually very very little. Rarely more than 3g per serving. 3g in a serving of spinach, vs 40 in a 6oz steak or 30 in a chicken breast or 40 in a can of tuna. Legumes obviously have more, but you've got to prepare them properly (soaking and long cooking methods).

If a plate full of meat isn't appetizing, I think you can get away with treating it like a garnish/side at every meal. Bacon and cheese and nuts on a salad, chicken salad with lots of nuts and fruit, soups with shredded meat, tacos...you don't need to sit down to a steak every day.


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Discussion Starter #6
I did a quick count. I've had 32 grams of protein (not including whatever I'll have for dinner), I didn't count overall calories, just protein. I did look at the diet laid out and it calls for like 4 glasses of milk, 2 eggs, and 6 servings of meat as the staples to get the protein. I guess I have some grocery shopping to do.

Do you think it would be okay to get some protein powder to make a milkshake? I'm hesitant to buy a pre-made drink in a can or any of those highly processed types. I have some hemp protein powder, but that stuff tastes awful, even in a smoothie.
 

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Valerie, I did Brewer's Diet last pregnancy and had a VERY healthy 9 lb baby boy. But I am not doing it this time because I am trying not to gain so much weight. 65+ lb gain last go. I was eating like 2200-2400 cals a day on average in the 2nd and 3rd tri. I now know that is probably too much for me, but the book made me shoot for 2600 cals a day. Also, I shouldn't eat grains but when I followed the diet, I told myself it was "good for me" so I did and that really contributed to my gain, too. So now I am following the principals, am mostly Paleo but do include WAPF guidelines of fermented grains once a week and I've been focusing on eggs, butter, and pastured meat. One way to get more protein without a shake (which I would not ever recommend) is to bake some nut flour muffins or biscuits with egg and coconut oil. Lots of protein and fat there, and hides the eggs. You could also make easy crepes with egg and tapioca flour (add a little cinnamon and vanilla to taste). That is all you need and beautiful crepes with butter and honey or jam for breakfast would give you a lot of protein.


I should add that I may have gained the extra weight regardless of the caloric intake but I *think* the grains and 2400 a day didn't help my case. :)
 
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I definitely agree that the grain recommendation in the Brewer diet can contribute to more weight gain than necessary, without really adding much nutritionally to the diet. I like that Brewer shuns sugar, but all those grains is still a really heavy carb load, and so filling that they displace more nutrient dense foods.

I would make protein powder a last resort - there are some on the market that are okay (Mt Capra goat whey (not the mineral whey) is alright), but they're all so highly processed by nature, and most have some kind of artificial sweetener.

After all this talk, I added up my protein total for the day and I'm only at 55g - that's with a day that included eggs twice and meat twice. Looks like I'll have a glass or two of milk before bed...
 

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I followed the Brewer Diet (as closely as I could, that is A LOT of food) last pregnancy and gained 30 pounds, birthed a 7 pound, 4 oz baby. I had virtually no swelling and aside from pelvic alignment issues, a pretty comfy and healthy pregnancy. I also combined it with Weston A. Price principles: FCLO, butter, coconut oil, sprouted/feremtned foods, bone broth, etc...I have NOT had a model diet this pregnancy, but I'm working towards it. I usually follow the Weston A. Price diet, but have fallen off the wagon this summer and boy do I feel it!

I found in order to have a decent protein intake, I need to have a heavy-hitting breakfast. I end up eating lots of ricotta cheese, cheese sticks for snacks, a glass of milk when I first wake up then another before bed. I also have been adding a tablespoon of Great Lakes Gelatin to my herbal tea, along with a tablespoon of coconut oil, because I want to avoid powdered protein. And canned wild salmon is a friend, too, if you can stomach just seasoning it and eating it out of the can. Thats 30 grams or so right there, in one sitting! Sprouted bread has 6 grams of protein and is digestible, so a piece of sprouted toast with nut butter was great. If you can't comsume a hearty amount in one sitting, the suggestion is to eat a bite of something protein rich every hour (i.e. a cube of cheese, a spoonful of nut butter, etc....) I also have to rely on lots of Paleo-stlye muffins because of the heavy reliance on eggs in the recipes.

I have been taking dessicated liver because I just can't get the organ meats down right now. I don't know if it contributes to protein in dessicated form, but I like knowing I'm getting the health boost when my taste buds are shouting, "No!"
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I think I like the idea of using nut flour to bake things. I've been having trouble eating bread. We have a bread-maker and always make homemade bread, but I had to stop because I couldn't take the smell. It doesn't smell like it should. But I think I could maybe get by doing the muffins or maybe brownies or something.

I am also now at 55g for the day. And I am so full. I'm not sure if I could make it to 2600 daily (I know the diet says 2600-3000). I'm not concerned about weight gain, I will do whatever is healthiest, I'm just concerned about eating too much and then vomiting from the too much food.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ooh, Duchess, I just read your post because it posted right before mine. I love the idea of sprouted grain bread to put the nut butter on. Great idea!
 

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@DuchessTergie
I just got some of the Great Lakes gelatin. I will start putting it in my tea. I had not thought about that.
I'm having a hard time eating chicken these days but I feel like I feel way better when I eat lots of protein. Thanks @Valerie11 for posting this thread. I had no idea about such diet but I do know I eat lots of almond butter , eggs( egg salad, scrambled and salmon. So in a way I may already be pion this diet seeing that I have to eat every two hours because I'm starving by then.

I just looked at the site. The only thing I'm missing is the leafy vegetables and the vitamin C. Tomato juice sounds good. I'll have to investigate brands. Fruit is not appealing to me now.


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I'll write more later, but as far as weight gain goes, my pregnancies (all Brewer babies) have gone like this:

1st- 37lb weight gain, 7lb 8oz baby

2nd- 30ish lb weight gain, 6lb 3oz baby

3rd- 45lb weight gain, 8lb 2oz baby

4th- 28lb weight gain, 7lb 8oz baby


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I followed this diet with my first, gained about 38 lbs (while maintaining my then 5 day a week weight lifting workout schedule) and birthed a healthy 9 lb baby girl.

Didn't have the energy or focus to follow it with number 2. Didn't work out and gained about 28 lbs and ds was a healthy 7 lb 13 oz (and seemed so tiny to me!).

Trying to get back on it this go 'round. I actually do find that my energy level is much better if I eat more protein.
 

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I do recommend this diet frequently, but it can be a lot of food. For people struggling to eat, I tell them to focus on the protein because it is really important for a healthy pregnancy. I use the hemp protein too. The best way to hide it is add a banana to your smoothie. Peanut butter/banana works even better and has even more protein. Cottage cheese is excellent if you like it. It has 30g of protein in one cup.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I love peanut butter, but I have one kid who is allergic, so I am hesitant to every buy it.
 

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Now I'm overwhelmed. I will have to research these diets. I have to admit I have reached the point where I resent food. It is really hard to get enough protein and I still feel sick if I don't get enough. Nothing sounds good, pretty much ever. I wish I didn't have to work FT, I feel like I would be doing a much better job managing food (let's not even get started with the fact that I can't nap during the day even though I am so exhausted).

Anyway, why do the Brewer diet? What are the benefits. Where can I get more info on this stuff?

Thanks :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
forestlover, I'm at home FT with a 3 year old and I also can't get a handle on it. I'm still pretty restricted to what my body will let me eat on a given week.

The point of the protein, from what I've read, is all to increase blood volume so that your body doesn't start constricting vessels in your limbs (swollen ankles) to save the blood supply for the baby. So I will definitely increase the protein. I got some protein bars today just for that extra push to get closer to 80g per day. It also says not to decrease salt intake and that women with low salt diets are more likely to have some of the complications of pregnancy.
 

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Yes, @Valerie11. The point of the Brewer Diet is to support healthy blood volume increase for pregnancy. The basis of the diet is not just protein, but protein, calories and salt (NOT table salt, but natural salts). It is a really large amount of food to consume, but is managable if you do graze style eating (3 meals, 3 snacks or eating snacks every hour) and limit your fluid intake to mostly nutritious fluids such as milk, and 100% fruit and vegetable juices with no added sugar. (Too much water offers no nutrition and takes up valuable stomach room.)

I think it is a great general diet for pregnancy. I try not to get too hung up on counting grams of protein. I just check off the list what I eat during the day, use it to help guide me to make healthy choices and know what I am missing so I can do better the next day. I approach it in a no stress way.
 
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Thanks @Valerie11 & @jodieanneanton. This sounds much like what I am trying to do anyway - as much protein as I can find, no salt restriction (know about that one for healthy pregnancies), and I subscribe to the idea that you don't need to force liquids (drink to thirst, the body knows what it needs). I looked into the diet more and the tracking tools seem helpful.
 
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