What To Eat and Drink in Early Labor

It used to be the recommendation that no eating should happen in labor what-so-ever. Thankfully, new evidence based research shows that eating and drinking in labor are helpful and beneficial. Eating and drinking in early labor can be especially vital to prepare and store energy for the hours and hours of labor that lay ahead. But what should laboring mama eat and drink?

True hydration cannot happen during labor absent hospital administered IV fluids. So it's SO important that in the weeks before labor, you're drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water a day, in order to be properly hydrated for labor. However, maintaining that hydration during labor is also important. Water is, of course, the best go-to, but something with electrolytes and energy boosters should be considered too. These sippers are awesome for labor drinks.

  • Lemon water
  • Coconut water
  • Fruit infused waters 

To maintain energy for birth, think of eating in early labor like preparing for a marathon. We don't want belly too full with a big meal but we don't want you starving and lacking stamina either. Here are some energizing snack ideas for early labor.

  • Nut butter on whole week toast
  • Cheese and crackers
  • Yogurt with fruit or granola
  • Apple slices and peanut butter
  • Carrot sticks and hummus 
  • Grapes or berries
  • Protein shake
  • Fruit smoothie
  • Whole fruit granola bar
  • Turkey slices
  • Beef jerky

Most importantly, listen to your body. If you're hungry, eat. If you're thirsty, drink. If you're tired, take a nap. These snacks and drinks coupled with rest and care should give you the energy for a great birth.