The best labour bag snacks
You’re in labour, you’re hungry or thirsty or both. What are the best things to pack in your labour bag?
Sandwiches with several different kinds of filling. Go for favourites and things that are not too messy, so they are easy to eat. Brown bread will fill you up better and keep you going for longer. Bagels are another alternative.
Crackers and things to go on them – peanut butter, honey, hoummus, cheese
Crisps, popcorn, ricecakes
Vegetable sticks – carrots, celery, peppers, radishes. Take some hummous too or a dip for variety.
Fruit portions – pineapple chunks, peaches, strawberries, bananas, grapes. Perhaps little pre-prepared pots of fruit cocktail or fruit in juice. Don’t forget a spoon. Dried fruit is also good.
Your favourite boiled sweets or jelly sweets for energy, some chewing gum to freshen your mouth or some mints to keep you from feeling like your mouth is dry are a great idea. They can help you produce saliva to avoid dry lips and also take away the taste of the gas and air.
Energy or cereal bars.
Small pots of desert, such as yoghurt, mousse, custard, jelly.
Ice, ice lollies and ice pops. Make your own with frozen fruit juice or smoothies.
Chocolate, chocolate bars or chocolate biscuits.
Raspberry leaf tea
Water in small plastic bottles
Small cartons of juice in various flavours
Smoothies that give you fluids and fruits in one easy shot
Cordial to add to water
Instant miso soup and instant soups
Don’t pack things you feel you should have – pack things you know you like. If you’re a Mars bar sort of person, don’t feel the need to take organic 80% cocoa dark chocolate because you feel it looks batter! And take things you’d choose if recovering from an illness, as you’ll find that comforting.
Take snacks for your birth partner too. If you’re in labour a long time, your partner will be hungry. Allow enough for both of you and make sure you talk about what he might like.
If you’re taking things that are perishable or that might taste better chilled, invest in a good icebox or bag, some ice bricks and keep them frozen and ready to go. A cheese sandwich that has been sitting around in a warm room for 20 hours is not very appetizing!
Pack things in small containers. If you’re taking sandwiches or portions of fruit or veg, pack them into small plastic or foil containers so that you can open one at a time and the rest will stay fresh. Vary the flavours to avoid boredom.
Eat when you want to, not because you think you need to. In labour, some women need to keep snacking, others feel nauseous. Listen to your body but pack as if you’re going to need it.
Make sure some of your snacks are soft and easy to eat, as chewing might be more difficult in labour.
Fizzy drinks aren’t great as they can make you burp all the time. Not comfortable during a contraction.
Now see our hospital bag checklist