Healthy As A Mother
Recent Episodes Appear First
TTC During the Holidays: Navigating Emotions
The holidays are upon us and if you are trying to conceive, this episode is for you! I interviewed Sadie Ackerman, an integrative mental health consultant all about navigating the complex emotions that can come up during the holidays. If you are feeling grief and anger seeing other pregnancy announcements, feeling devastated at the thought that you don't have a baby for the holidays, or you are navigating the various emotions that can arise during social and family gatherings, you do not want to miss this. Even if you aren't trying to conceive, the framework that Sadie shares with us is invaluable to all of us because we are all navigating relationships and feelings around the holidays. So without further ado, let's get started.
TTC During the Holidays: Health Tips
Today's episode is packed full of health tips for navigating the holidays when you are trying to conceive! The holidays often bring many events and circumstances that aren't always in alignment with optimal health and fertility, such as drinking alcohol, over-indulging on desserts and treats, traveling, being stressed, and navigating toxin exposures while traveling or staying at other people's homes, just to name a few. Today I interviewed Sadie Ackerman, an integrative mental health consultant, and we discussed how to make better choices while still enjoying yourself, how to navigate choosing different behaviors than you have in the past, and how to have difficult conversations if they are necessary. This episode really applies to all of us as we move into the holiday season, however, if you dream of having a baby soon or someday, this is especially important. Let's dive right in!
Dr Morgan's Postpartum On Sleeping and Resting
We shared Dr. Morgan's fourth home birth story in episode #42, and now here we are going over questions you all had about her postpartum in regards to newborn sleep as well as managing an extended postpartum lie-in period. We talk about how and why Sunny sleeps on her stomach, how she handles the rough nights, and how her husband and her split nighttime baby care...or not. Then we dive into what a postpartum lie in rest period looks like - how many days, how to plan expectations with family and friends, if she has mom guilt about her lack of involvement with her other kids - and spoiler alert, she does. A lot. Hear all about it here in this part 1 of 2 series - let's go!
Dr. Morgan's 4th Home Birth Story
It's birth story time! I'm about 11 days postpartum and feeling strong and good and I want to tell you this story before I forget it. So Dr. Leah and I are going to go through the entire birth process, which is a long one, of my 4th baby and 4th home birth. We also took some questions from Instagram. I'm so excited to share this with you and photos coming soon! Stay tuned!
Mitochondrial Health for Fertility with Dr. Kalea Wattles
Did you know that there is a key part of egg cells and sperm that can greatly impact egg quality, sperm quality, conception potential, miscarriage risk, and outcomes for mom and baby? They are called the mitochondria and to say it simply...they are really important. The coolest thing is there is so much that we can do to optimize and improve our mitochondria. On the podcast episode today, I interview Dr. Kalea Wattles, a naturopathic doctor and certified functional medicine practitioner who specializes in fertility and the mitochondria. She walks us through what they are, how they impact fertility and our overall health, and gives us actionable steps we can start doing today to optimize them!
The Wisdom of Waiting: When TTC or Past Your Due Date
Waiting is a major part of the experience of becoming a mother, yet we rarely talk about it or give it the attention it deserves. From the two-week wait while trying to conceive, to the waiting for your chance of becoming pregnant after months and months of trying, to the waiting for a new treatment or change to impact your fertility, to the waiting for your baby to grow in the 9-10 months of pregnancy, to the challenging wait for baby to arrive as you pass your due date...becoming a mother can involve a lot of....waiting. Dr. Morgan and I break this down and share our own experiences of being in the current throws of waiting...her, waiting for her baby to come as she is now past her due date, and me, waiting to conceive via IVF, a process that has been pushed back almost 8 months due to various factors. I share the wisdom I have learned from years and years of waiting along our fertility journey, and we share some golden nuggets you don't want to miss. Let's dive right in!
Supporting the Emotional Aspect of the Fertility Journey
Navigating fertility and infertility can be incredibly emotional and challenging. This is where fertility coaching comes in. Today's episode is full of practical steps, wisdom, hope, and a key aspect of fertility that I wish every woman and couple was aware of along their fertility journey. Whether you are just starting your conception journey, have experienced losses, or have been trying to conceive for months or years, my interview with Elizabeth King is for you. We dive into the subconscious mind and how to truly heal and support yourself as you journey toward motherhood.
Homeopathy During Birth and Postpartum: Top 8 Remedies with Jill Giesinger from HerHomeopathy
This week we reap the expert advice of guest Jill Geesinger, certified professional homeopath specializing in the world of pregnancy, postpartum, and motherhood. She teaches us the top 5 remedies she recommends to have on hand during birth to ensure things progress smoothly and appropriately, and her top 3 remedies for a solid postpartum recovery. We discuss how homeopathics work, who can take them and when and how, proper storage, and ways to know they're working well. Homeopathy is a gentle, supportive, effective, and safe way to support your entire motherhood experience, so let's go ahead and start learning!
First 6 Steps To Take Along Your Fertility Journey
If you were to say, "Dr. Leah, I want to have a baby. What are the first 6 things I should do?" I would respond exactly as I do in today's podcast episode. I highlight the first 6 things I would tell a woman to do as soon as the idea of a baby has entered her mind, but even if you have been trying to conceive for a while, these still apply. There are so many important things to do along the preconception and fertility journey, however, I shared some big-hitting ones and I think you will really enjoy how practical they are. I also share the exciting news that my Fertility Formula course is finally open for enrollment, so you can finally get the in-depth support so many of you have been asking me for on your journey toward motherhood! Without further ado, let's get started!
All About Cesareans: Prevention, Preparation, and Healing
In this episode, we tease out the many reasons for cesarean birth versus vaginal birth - some warranted and some the cause of an impatient modern medical system. We walk you through how to prepare for a cesarean if you know you are having one, and some tips for the quick moments before a potentially unplanned cesarean as well. Dr. Leah shares her unique perspective on her homebirth turned cesarean, and how a frameshift helped her find moments of peace in the OR. We discuss our top tips for thorough healing and recovery, with many practical tips and resources sprinkled throughout. We hope you find value in this episode, whether it's for your preparation or your emotional and physical healing afterwards. Let's dive in.
Male-Factor Infertility: From a Man's Perspective
Today on the podcast, Dr. Leah interviewed her husband, Mike, about his experience as a man navigating male factor infertility. This is a rare peek into the mind of a man going through this vulnerable time and up-front insight on an often avoided topic. Although this journey was lonely for him, with 1 in 10 men struggling to conceive today, he realized after his experience that it's important to share if he can help even just one other couple have the family they dream of. We discuss what it was like for him to find out about his sperm, what the 6-year journey to conception was like, what support he received and wished he had had, and what he would recommend other men navigating this major obstacle do. He has such wisdom to share and practical tips for men and their partners as they navigate male-factor infertility. Let's dive in!
The First 10 Days Postpartum: Top 5 Tips to Thrive
The first 10 days with your baby is a beautiful, dynamic, constantly changing season of life with many steep learning curves to tackle. I, Dr. Morgan, am incredibly passionate about this time period because I see so many families completely overwhelmed and underprepared for the day-to-day changed that occur in these early days. I want all new families to feel confident and able to enjoy their new babies during this immediate postpartum time, so in this episode I give my top 5 tips to thrive, and talk about my 11-video course that details all of these changes so that you and your partner know what to expect and can feel ready and confident in what is normal and what is not. From post-birth interventions through the first latch, milk coming in, meconium and normal stool changes, weight gain, birth recovery, true postpartum healing, placenta options and more - we've got you covered.
Top 5 Considerations for Optimizing IVF Naturally
Get ready for this long-awaited IVF episode. In this solo episode, I break down my top 5 considerations for optimizing IVF naturally for anyone going through the IVF process or considering it in the future! We discuss the four unique phases where support is needed that I identified along my journey through IVF for our primarily male-factor infertility struggles. I discuss how IVF differs from an unassisted conception, what the industry is missing, and how we can fill in the gaps with natural medicine. If you are struggling to conceive, or you have a friend or family member thinking about doing IVF, you do NOT want to miss this one!
The Vital Importance of Baby's Position During Birth with Ann Gilligan, RN, LNC, RYPT
Calling all preggos! You are not going to want to miss this. In this week's episode, I talk with the incredible Ann Gilligan, Labor and Delivery Nurse and creator of Gilligan's Guide, which teaches pregnant women and providers specific maternal positioning in order to optimize the baby's position for a smooth vaginal birth. There was so much in this episode that I was absolute lit up by and I am SO excited about this information. I highly recommend looking into working with Ann and looking into taking her course if you're wanting to learn more - because I TRULY feel that this is the type of revolutionary information that we will see widely spread amongst ALL birth professionals in due time. Sit back and have a listen, you are going to learn a LOT.
The Power of Progesterone: An Essential Fertility Hormone
What do PMS, anxiety, sleep issues, and miscarriages all have in common? Low progesterone may be playing a role in any of these. In today's episode we unpack everything you need to know about progesterone. We talk about the important role it plays in hormone balance, fertility and conception, and maintaining a pregnancy. We discuss why it may be low, how to tell if you are, how to test for it, and what to do to increase it naturally . We dive into supplementing with progesterone and we answer all of the questions our listeners asked about this incredible hormone. I think you are going to love this one!
Beyond Egg Count: Discussing Ovarian Reserve with Dr. Marc Sklar
You are not just your egg count. When it comes to fertility there is so much more going on, even if you have low ovarian reserve. Today we interview Dr. Marc Sklar, a natural fertility specialist and we talk about eggs, what is at the root of low ovarian reserve, and what to do about it. Dr. Marc shares what he wishes for the world of fertility, and he shares his incredible wisdom. You do not want to miss this one.
Top 3 Things Each Doctor is Doing to Prep: Dr. Leah's Conception & Dr. Morgan's Birth
We are right there with you in the process of growing our families, and in this episode, we take you through the top 3 areas of focus each of us are prioritizing as we prep for the big transitions we both have coming up in the next few months. For Dr. Leah, it’s optimizing her health to conceive her second child, and for me Dr. Morgan, it’s preparing for the birth and postpartum of my fourth child. Dr. Leah leads you through her personal preconception journey, including what supplements she is taking and dietary or lifestyle steps to optimize the transfer, and for me Dr. Morgan, I outline my main focus points for the rest of my pregnancy, and then how I am making different planning decisions for my home birth as well as preparing those around me for a supported postpartum. Let’s dive in!
Relationships While TTC Part 2: Sex & Intimacy
We are back for part 2 of navigating relationships while trying to conceive. In this episode we dive deeper into sex and intimacy. We discuss libido and sex while trying to conceive, during infertility, after pregnancy loss, connection with your partner, and relationship dynamics and advice. This episode is packed full of practical tips on how to navigate the complexity of this, what struggles with intimacy or sex in women and men may mean about your fertility, and we share our own personal experiences in this department. This is one of my favorite episodes so far!
The Complexity of Relationships Around Trying to Conceive: Part 1
What is it like to be someone going through infertility while others around you conceive easily - or vice versa? And how can you best support someone who is going through infertility? Relationship dynamics while trying to conceive, or while supporting someone who is trying to conceive, can be tricky to manage - and we are no strangers to how this can play out in a close friendship. Join us in this two-part series where we share our personal relationship story of how easy conceiving versus infertility affected our friendship, and follow along as we unpack several complex concepts like understanding your triggers, using non-violent communication and strong boundary setting, neurolinguistic programming, as well as many practical tips on how to move through the difficult emotions that come up throughout this process.
All Things Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy with Dr. Lauren Mallari-Snyder, DPT
Is it normal to pee when you sneeze? Can you lift weights while pregnant? What’s the best way to start working out again after having a baby? Join us this week as we talk with pelvic floor physical therapist, Dr. Lauren mallari-Snyder, to dispel common myths, discuss dysfunction versus health, vaginal versus cesarean birth recovery, prolapse, urinary AND fecal incontinence and so, so much more.
Ask Us Anything: Part 2
You all had so many questions from the first round that we had to make a part two so that we could answer all of your questions! In this Q&A episode, we get into topics like how we personally handle conflict with our partners, lanolin use for nipple healing, how much we both weigh, how to handle people around you wearing perfume, melatonin and caffeine in pregnancy and what if you and your partner disagree on the number of children to have, and more! We get into some nitty gritty around general conflict resolution in this episode, which is something not enough people talk about so we are happy to break open that conversation as it pertains to the world of fertility toxins on coworkers or handling disagreements with your spouse- let's go!
Ask Us Anything: Part 1
We said, "Ask us anything" and now we are responding. In this Q&A episode, we answer a few of the top questions we received from our listeners. We dive into what implantation bleeding looks like, the pros and cons of IUDs AND vasectomies, Phexxi birth control and its impact on the vagina, anxiety in the first trimester, chronic constipation in kids, and how to raise progesterone and testosterone. We share our real-life vulnerable answers to some of these questions and as always aim to help teach and empower you along your journey on becoming or being a mother, wherever you land on that spectrum.
All About Weaning: Philosophy, How To, and Factors to Consider
How in the world do you begin weaning your child, and when can you safely start? In this episode we talk in detail about factors to consider for night weaning and day weaning (because they are different), as well as my personal, yet also tried and true method of how to organize and approach the topic with your child in a way that respects their emotions AND respects the milk in your boobs so you're at less risk for clogged ducts or mastitis. We discuss weaning babies versus toddlers, whether or not you need to give them replacement milk, and explain the signs and symptoms of post weaning depression, which unfortunately is rarely talked about. We ALSO talk about trying to conceive while breastfeeding or throughout weaning, and share our maybe unpopular opinions about optimal age gaps between children. Here we go!
Detoxing Before Pregnancy: Why and How to Do It
What are toxins and what is a detox? Why is detoxing important to do before you become pregnant? In this episode we unpack the buzz word "detox" and discuss what detoxing actually is, why it's important to do before becoming pregnant, and how to do it. We share some of our favorite tips and how to find the balance between awareness and overwhelm. This is an important topic, so let's dive in!
Postpartum Depression & Anxiety: Five Root Causes
Dr. Morgan here, and this episode is near and dear to my heart - as I am no stranger to the experience of postpartum depression and anxiety. I feel for myself looking back on those experiences, and have immense compassion for those going through these dark times. PPD and PPA unfortunately affect as many as 1 in 7 or 8 women, and we are here today to tease out five possible root causes so that in case these are a component in your story, you have a path to walk towards finding yourself again. Some of these are easily missed on improper lab orders, or are commonly mistaken as normal symptoms of life with a new baby - but we know there is a different way - a way where you can enjoy motherhood feeling like yourself, even through the tough times. We are here for you, and hope this episode helps.
Home Birth Turned C-Section: Dr. Leah's Birth Story
If there is one thing I have learned along my journey toward motherhood it is surrender. Circumstances and events don't always go as planned. The fact that I, a naturopathic doctor who aims to do as little intervention as possible, ended up needing medical assistance to not only conceive but also birth my baby is beyond ironic. Dr. Morgan and I relive the crazy story of my daughter's birth and I share not only the journey but also the insights that brought me peace through a process that ended up drastically different than I imagined.
Dr. Morgan's Three Home Birth Stories
Story time! Come along with me as I walk you through my first three home birth stories, and how I plan to prep for my FOURTH birth set for late October. I've had a variety of experiences, and learned new lessons each time. From a long arduous back labor to a very quick and shocking fetal ejection reflex birth, to then the middle-ground goldilocks 12 hour labor and my first water birth - you'll be sure to laugh alongside Dr. Leah and I through this one! Let's go!
"Just Relax" and the Wisdom Behind Fertility Energy
Are you trying to conceive? Have you been told to "Just Relax." It's such a common statement to hear along the fertility journey and to some of us it can be incredibly invalidating and frustrating because it isn't always that easy. However, is there something to this statement and concept? Does relaxing actually play a factor in trying to conceive? We talk about this as well as the concept of the fertility battery and the wisdom behind fertility energy. This is a game changing episode, so let's dive in.
Don't let anyone make fun of you for making a birth plan. In this episode, we talk about the idea and energetics of writing a birth plan, all of the various components to consider adding, as well as some philosophy on flexibility during birth. We dive into various newborn and mother-based interventions to be aware so that you, your partner, and any labor support people can be on the same page in advocating for the choices you want for you and your baby. We cover a LOT, so you may want to relisten, or take notes. Let's dive in!
This important part of fertility can determine whether you conceive, whether you maintain the pregnancy and don't miscarry, and it can impact the health of your future baby from childhood through their adult life! It's the quality of your eggs! Eggs are the female equivalent of sperm in a man. Together egg and sperm are what meet to create your baby, so they are pretty important. Today we talk about them and how to improve your egg quality to improve fertility outcomes as well as how to live in a healthy balance of optimal health and sustainability and joy along the fertility journey.
Wanting To Want It: The Low-Down on Low Libido
Today we are discussing one of the hottest topics we talk about low libido, aka low sex drive. What is low libido? How much sex is normal? What factors affect it? What to do if you "Want to Want It, But Don't?" What can you do to boost your sex drive? We answer all of this and more in this episode. You do NOT want to miss this one, so grab a nice cup of tea and curl up to listen as we share the low-down on low libido.
Mastitis care guidelines have changed for the better, and this episode teaches you more than just the basic methods of how to manage it. We also discuss how to prevent it, how to tell which type you have, what to do if it becomes recurrent, and then most importantly - what TO do and what NOT to do - and it might surprise you. This episode hits home for me due to my own long unfortunate history with recurrent mastitis, and I am over the moon to share what I’ve learned over the last several years so that no one has to feel as lost as I did. Let's go!
You may have heard of autism before, but I bet you have never heard what our special guest doctor has to say about it. Today we interview Dr. Ari Calhoun, one of the top experts on Autism and other childhood brain development conditions. She helps us unpack this increasingly common diagnosis, and she shares some practical tips on how to support your child's brain development before pregnancy, in utero, and during early childhood in order to reduce the risks for Autism and other neurodevelopment disorders. You do not want to miss this one!
A Deep Dive into Lip & Tongue Ties
What in the world is a tongue lie, and how does it affect baby’s ability to breastfeed, eat solids, speak, keep their teeth clean, breathe well, and develop the structure of their face? This is a large topic, and a little touchy. The tongue tie world has exploded in the last several years - and for good reason. Families need resources to help figure out what is happening with their babies - but there’s a darker side of the industry that takes advantage of a growing problem, for profit. No one is surprised, but we are calling it out. Oral ties ARE a real issue, and in this episode we discuss the symptoms and solutions, as well as how the function of the tongue affects MANY other areas of health later on into adulthood. Whether you’re new to the idea of tongue and lip ties, or a seasoned vet, we’re sure you’ll learn a lot in this fiery episode.
Postpartum Sex: What to Expect & How to Improve It
This is a juicy episode, so get ready. We are talking all about postpartum sex, how things can change after baby, what to expect, what to share with your partner about those changes, and what to do to support yourself in this season. On this podcast we like to talk about the real, the raw, and the un-talked about, and this is no exception. So here we go!
Breastfeeding: What to Know BEFORE Your Baby Is Born
Breastfeeding is the next natural step after birthing a baby - but guess what, you AND your baby still have to learn how to do it. In this episode, we discuss several principles to successful breastfeeding, and how to prepare for the process during your pregnancy. Having a newborn comes with many steep learning curves, and this is certainly one of them - but having education and resources to back your inherent instincts and motivation to breastfeed your baby can make or break the experience. We have to remember that we used to get this info as little girls surrounded by community - but today, most new mothers have never even seen a baby latch. From tongue ties to letdowns, building your supply, positioning, and mastitis - let us help guide and pump you up for this special relationship, so there’s no surprises - let’s go!
Body Image: From Womanhood to Motherhood with Dr. Cerra Kelly
We’re talking all things body image in pregnancy and postpartum this week, with special guest, Dr. Cerra Kelly naturopathic doctor and women’s reproductive health expert. The body changes that come with building and raising children are largely un talked about and almost considered taboo. There’s immense pressure to “snap back” to your old body, one without any marks or signs of life. We’re here to destroy that notion, and deeply discuss the work that many women must go through to find body neutrality and self love after making babies. For those with history of disordered eating, these changes can be incredibly overwhelming, and Dr. Cerra guides us through how she talks with patients to emphasize the importance of eating more to become fertile, how the weight gain is protective of breastmilk supplies, and how she leads women through re-parenting exercises to heal the hurt inner child aspect of themselves where body awareness and image issues began to take hold in their lives. The goal is to find radical self love for the amazing work our bodies are doing to build a family and bring forth life.
The IVF Fix: When IVF is Needed and When It Isn't
I wouldn’t be a mom without IVF and I am so grateful for it. But is IVF always the right choice, or are so many women and couples being shuttled into this path unnecessarily? In this episode we talk about it all, from the broken fertility system, to the miraculous, and sometimes unnecessary act that is IVF. We discuss what you can do NOW to prevent needing IVF or what steps to take to assess your fertility whether you are just starting your fertility journey or are a seasoned infertility warrior.
Postpartum Healing: No More Mothers Left in the Dust
This episode is all about how to properly take care of YOU during your postpartum period, commonly called the fourth trimester. Our culture places a lot of emphasis on the new baby, and rightly so, but we’re sadly missing a huge piece of this puzzle - the health, recovery, and well-being of the new mother. We discuss what practices cultures throughout history and around the world have done to care for their new mothers, and how to plan and prepare for your own well supported, well nourished, and restful postpartum. We get down to the nitty gritty details of how warmth, nature, and community help build you up so you enter motherhood feeling resilient and replenished, rather than burnt out and overwhelmed. Get ready to take some notes, let’s get going!
Sperm Matter: Why We Should Care About Male Fertility
In this episode we unpack why sperm matter, the important role of male fertility, and how it’s drastically declining. We break down how sperm are made, what can impact them, and what practical steps you, or your partner can do to optimize sperm, improve fertility outcomes, and change the trajectory of your future children's health. This topic is very near and dear to my heart as you will soon find out. Grab a pen and paper or get ready to add some notes to your phone, and let’s get started!
Biohacking Birth: What You Need To Know Before You Do It
Get ready because this is one of my favorite topics of all time. Consider this episode a mini crash course in birth, discussing things like what triggers labor to begin, and how it all starts, What exactly is happening inside your body and with your important labor hormones, and how we can use this understanding to “bio hack” your birth experience to support positive outcomes? We discuss the types of things that can cause birth to stall out, why contractions hurt and how to reduce that pain, and the INCREDIBLE things that happen inside your baby’s body when they take their first breath. Thank you for being here, now let’s dive in!
Preconception: What It Is and Why it Matters
This episode is packed full of everything you need for the preconception or prior to pregnancy season. We talk about it all from the moment you decide to get off birth control all the way to the time you were actually trying to conceive. We share practical tips on setting your body up for success, using nutrition and sleep, removing toxins, practicing stress management, the healing power of nature. And we even talk about your partner's role.
You may want to grab a pen and paper for this one.
The Birth Control "Cure": Why Birth Control is NOT the Answer
In this juicy episode, we go over the origin of birth control and its history so you can understand this fully. Then we dive into what exactly birth control is doing to your body and why birth control periods are not REAL periods. We discuss why birth control is often prescribed and why it shouldn't be used as a catch-all for women’s hormonal imbalances. Learn what you can do to support your body on and off birth control to protect your hormones and preserve your fertility.
The Birth System Trap: Pitfalls of Modern Birth
In this episode, we discuss the unfortunate realities of the modern industrialized birth system, how it is not conducive to supporting the physiology of labor, and how this means real, tangible, poor outcomes for mothers and babies. We break down due dates, unnecessary interventions, inductions, cesareans, and the tenants of physiological labor that are generally unsupported in the most hospital systems today.
This is what happens when individualized care isn't the standard, and we break down several trap points for women to become aware of, and. We hope you learn a lot and come out feeling more empowered than ever.
Start Here, Meet the Docs
This episode is an introduction to Season 1 of the Healthy As A Mother Podcast. We tell the story of how we met and became college roommates, medical school study buddies, and now mom friend besties and co-hosts. We share our passions for women’s health, motherhood, and our own struggles behind why we do what we do.