Protein Foods

Protein Foods

(with the protein foods containing the most essential amino acids first).

Eggs (preferably organic, or at least “free-range”)
Fish (preferably:
Poultry (preferably: baked, broiled or stewed)
Tofu & other beans
Oats (preferably not quick cooking)
Nuts (especially almonds)

Protein Food Combinations

(to assure best usage of the most Amino Acids found in the food /Proteins )

Beans + Wheat
Beans + Rice
Corn bread + Beans
Corn tortillas + Beans
Lentil Curry + Rice
Pea Soup + Wheat (bread)
Pasta + milk and/or Cheese
Cheese + Wheat (cheese sandwiches)
Macaroni + Cheese
Garbanzo dip (hummus)
Sunflower seeds, peanuts, roasted soybeans (snack foods)

“Diet for a Small Planet”. Fig.14, page 176
Ibid. page 181 (Chart)


Culture Part II

Cultural Perspectives on Childbirth

Achomawi mother and childMulti-cultural Beliefs (Continued)

Last week I ended with discussion about the Lakota belief in a spiritual being who assists the souls of the unborn in their journey to human existence. It is thought she “marks” them before entry into this world.  This “mark” is what the medical field calls a “Mongolian” mark.

Because of the spiritual forces in play, many indigenous cultures had and still practice rituals at the birth of a child. This is due to the understanding that childbearing and childbirth are a sacred act.

This may not necessarily be understood by present-day women within the culture, but in their soul and spirit the women do recognize that modern medicine’s “managed care” works against the traditions and ageless wisdom of their tribe. This is true whether they have a traditional spiritually based upbringing in their lives or they have adopted non-traditional religious practice. Their sense of “knowing” from their soul, speaks out against what is not natural and spiritual in the birthing process.

Western culture encourages reading and the attendance of Childbirth Education classes, along with other strategies for birthing. In traditional cultures women “…prepare more symbolically. They avoid all actions and thoughts that have anything to do with ‘getting stuck’ or ‘closing up’ and ‘letting go’…  In traditional societies, women often go to midwives to confirm the pregnancy and then again only if there are special problems… (145)” prior to childbirth.

Another aspect is that most women within many traditional cultures would have been directly involved in the childbearing and child birthing aspects from a young age. Her mother or aunts and grandmother would have taught her about the processes of childbearing and childbirth during childhood and/or adolescent years. The concepts would have “…been integrated into her maturity into adulthood (Ibid.)”. It would have come from her experiential life and stories told to her instead of a class or books.

Unfortunately, much of this kind of experiential life and tradition has been lost or no longer practiced today by local tribal women. Some of the other women will talk about this or that grandma who was a midwife, and who may have been allowed at IHS for a birth. When I have asked women, they mostly talk about a more negative experience for their childbirth if they speak up at all.

Traditionally, the birth of a baby was in the home, not a hospital. Some cultures used “a special hut [that] is constructed for that purpose ;…(Ibid)”. But today in the local area, birthing mostly takes place in a hospital setting, here on the reservation. Locally, there is the IHS. There also is Winner Regional, in Winner South Dakota (45 minutes from Mission, SD) or Cherry County Hospital in Valentine, NE.

Due to past experiences with IHS (the “Eugenics Project” of the 60s and 70s, for one), many women may opt to not have their babies unless there is an emergency. Both Winner and Valentine have doctors that have demonstrated certain biases against native women. Without midwives to deliver locally, this is what women on the Rosebud (Sicangu Oyate) Reservation face today (with the exception of one community).

Each of these three hospitals has their own regulations as to who may attend the birth. They also decide on whether a woman can have assisted births (Nurse-midwives/doulas/etc.).  My attempts to discover these policies, and the reasons for them, have been futile.

– Next week will be “Part 1 – The issues that affect Lakota Native women during pregnancy and childbirth in regards to: Racism, Sexism, and Oppression”


Pregnancy Diet




Plan your meals, AND SNACKS around fresh veggies and fruit, grains and legumes, and ample calcium-rich / protein-rich foods.

Start your day with a good breakfast:

-Helps energy levels
-maintains optimum weight
-Even just a small meal with some protein and carbs will be beneficial

Eat meals and snacks every 3 to 4 hours:

-snacks should include one fruit or vegetables with one serving from another food group.
– Fruit, or vegetable juice (non-sweetened preferably) can substitute for a fruit or vegetable serving.


The trick to preparing a quick, low-calorie meals and snacks are advanced planning,
having a basic inventory of ingredients and the right kitchen tools/appliances.
Tools/appliances: microwave oven, slow-cooker, wok or non-stick skillet and a blender

Plan your meals using fresh vegetables and fruit, whole grains and legumes (beans), along with protein rich food. Try not to have canned fruits packed in syrup, eat oatmeal instead of granola bars, steamed broccoli instead of the packaged broccoli with creamed cheese…
Eat fresh fruits and vegetables when in season, as often as possible. Dried (unsulphered) is next best for fruit then frozen, instead of canned.

You can add Nuts such as:

almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts
peanut butter

And / or seeds such as:

pumpkin, sesame, or sunflower seeds.


kidney beans
Wheat germ
Non-fat Milk


Proportion size should be three ounces of extra-lean meat, skinless chicken, fish
or one cup of cooked dried beans, lentils, split peas or chickpeas.
~Limit eggs to just one per day.


Cooked black-eyed peas
Bok Choy
Low-Fat Cheese
Collard greens
Cottage cheese
Rice Dream
Whole grain Total cereal
Kellogg’s Eggo Homestyle


Whole wheat bagel
Whole wheat breads
Sourdough bread

Cooked cereal:

Oatmeal, barley, farina
Whole wheat Pita
Rice, preferably brown
or white basmati rice
Noodles or pasta

QUENCHERS: Sparkling water, apple cider, apple juice, apricot nectar, carrot juice, grapefruit, grape, orange, papaya nectar, passion fruit nectar, peach nectar, pineapple juice, prune, tomato juice, V8 juice.

If you eat well, the occasional treat will not be a problem, so long as it is not a substitute for whole nutritious foods.


  • Drink at least 32 ounces water (by itself), a day. .
  • Drink tea instead of drinking coffee (it dehydrates).
  • You should try to drink at least two cups a day of the Red Raspberry Leaf / Nettle tea.


Herbal Teas – Part 3

nettle Nettle Leaf
Urtica dioica

Constituents: Histamine, formic acid, acetylcholine, serotonin, glucoquinones, many minerals (incl. silica), vitamins A, B, C, tannins.

Actions: Astringent, diuretic, tonic, nutritive, stops bleeding, circulatory stimulant, promotes milk flow, lowers blood sugar levels, prevents scurvy.

Nettles take minerals, including iron, from the soil and the aerial parts are a good tonic for anemia; high vitamin C content in the plant helps ensure that the iron is properly absorbed. Clears uric acid from the system to relieve gout and arthritis, and the astringency stops bleeding. (131) CGTMH

Said to reduce Rheumatic problems, stimulates the digestive system and promotes milk flow in breastfeeding women. Used for excessive menstruation flow and blood in urine. (191) THB

Good for asthma, chronic and acute urinary complaints, urinary stones, nephritis, and cystitis. Nettle also used for helping with diarrhea, dysentery, hemorrhoids and chronic arthritis and rheumatic problems. (202) TWOH

Nettle is considered to be an herb that is “rich” in calcium, iron, and numerous other vitamins and minerals.  It is an herb that is recommended for pregnant women who have low energy or suffer from chronic fatigue.  Nettle aids as a diuretic, to eliminate excess water from the body. This herb is considered a pregnancy “Tonic”, which stems from Native American usage as a pregnancy tonic, a preventative of hemorrhaging after birthing, and energy restoration after childbirth. (177) HHFW

It is an anemia preventative, reduces varicosities, and decreases the likelihood of hemorrhaging during childbirth. TNPB

Nettle will expel phlegm from the lungs and stomach; clean the urinary canal, valuable for diarrhea, dysentery, piles, as well as inflammation of the kidneys.  IHONA

Nettle is known to increase male and female fertility, will assist in the rebuilding of kidney function as well as kidney stone removal. Eases leg cramps and muscle spasms.  High in Calcium, vitamin K. WWHCBY


Vitamins A, C, D. and K, Calcium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron and Sulphur.


Gladstar, Rosemary. (1993) Herbal Healing for Women. Fireside Books: New York.

Hutchens, Alma R. (1991) Indian Herbalogy of North America. Shambhala: Boston.

Lust, John. (1983) The Herb Book. Bantam Books, NY

Ody, Penelope. (2000) Natural Health: Complete Guide to Medicinal Herbs. Dorling/Kindersley Lmt.: London.

Romm, Aviva Jill.  (2003) The Natural Pregnancy Book: herbs, nutrition, and other holistic choices. Celestial Arts: Berkeley

Tierra, Michael. (1990)  The Way of Herbs. Pocket Books: New York

Weed, Susan. (1986)  Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year. Ashtree Publishing; Woodstock



Herbal Teas – Part 2

Red Raspberry Leaf

Red Raspberry Leaf

Red Raspberry Leaf
Rubus idaeus

Constituents: (leaves) fragarine (uterine tonic), tannins, polypeptides.

Actions: (leaves) astringent, preparative for childbirth, stimulant, digestive remedy, tonic.


used for period cramps and discomforts, in pregnancy helps prepare the womb for childbirth. It is useful for diarrhea, sore throats, and mouth ulcers.  This herb is a cleansing diuretic. (113) CGTMH

“When combined with cream it will relieve nausea and vomiting”. Prevents miscarriage, reduces labor pains, assists in the increase of breast milk. (328) THB

The infused tea can be used also for menstrual irregularities. Tones and prepares uterus
for childbirth. (219) TWOH

Tones and nourishes the uterine muscles, and considered the “pregnancy tea”. Packed with vitamins and minerals, ” especially high in chelated iron”. It assists with enriches breast milk and milk flow. After childbirth, assists in restoration. (177) HHFW

It nourishes muscles and can be used for prevention of hemorrhaging due to the high iron content and its stringent quality.  (91) TNPB

Used by native peoples in soothing the kidneys and urinary tract, for relief of painful menstruation, a miscarriage preventative, aiding flow of menstruation yet if too abundant, will decrease the flow without stopping it. (231) IHONA

Red Raspberry will help with male and female fertility (when combined with Red Clover). Eases morning sickness, reduces labor pains and post-partum pains. It does not strengthen labor pains but allows the muscles to function properly and will assist the undelivered placenta. (19) WWHCY


Calcium, Iron, Vitamins C and E, Vitamin A and the B Vitamin complex, as well as many minerals… two of which are Phosphorus and Potassium.



Gladstar, Rosemary. (1993) Herbal Healing for Women. Fireside Books: New York.

Hutchens, Alma R. (1991) Indian Herbalogy of North America. Shambhala: Boston.

Lust, John. (1983) The Herb Book. Bantam Books, NY

Ody, Penelope. (2000) Natural Health: Complete Guide to Medicinal Herbs. Dorling/Kindersley Lmt.: London.

Romm, Aviva Jill.  (2003) The Natural Pregnancy Book: herbs, nutrition, and other holistic choices. Celestial Arts: Berkeley

Tierra, Michael. (1990)  The Way of Herbs. Pocket Books: New York

Weed, Susan. (1986)  Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year. Ashtree Publishing; Woodstock

Trust the Process

Trust the Process

Birth is Natural, Trust This…


Natural childbirth is:

FEARLESS childbirth
TRAINED childbirth
RELAXED childbirth
EASIER childbirth
SATISFIED childbirth

especially if a mother is helped to GIVE birth to her baby
consciously without too much discomfort, instead of ‘being
delivered’ while unconscious.

~Grantly Dick-Read  Childbirth Without Fear

The purpose of childbirth education is:

  • To INFORM women about all aspects of pregnancy and labor, in order to take the fear out of childbirth.
  • TRAIN women in nature’s process of birth, breastfeeding, and good nutrition.
  • Teach RELAXATION techniques, to reduce discomfort during childbirth.
  • Help women with techniques to make childbirth EASIER.
  • The result should be more SATISFACTION.

Women have helped and supported other women in childbirth since the dawn of time. In our modern times, this practice has diminished. Today we have been subjected to the medical/scientific process that is not focused on the natural way. It is geared more towards heroic measures, mostly based on erroneous ideas or for the time-structure of the doctor, rather than the timing of nature in a natural childbirth.


Trust the Process

Hoksiyuhab Oti:

“The house for giving birth (having babies)”. It is my goal to develop a free-standing birthing center on the Rosebud Reservation. I also wish to have a converted bus to travel around to the various communities on the reservation and bring birth support to the individual women on the reservation.

Childbirth Education

This is a source site for information about infertility/fertility issues, preparation for pregnancy,  healthy pregnancies, a safe childbirth, and Post-Partum care, and breastfeeding. The Rosebud Tribal Education has its own services for educating woman on the reservation for Parenting Classes. These two are separate and yet linked groups of topics.

Here you will also find support for those who wish to assist women and teens in pregnancy, links to information about childbirth, and a portal for online short-course Childbirth Education, for those who cannot afford/have no insurance for a class or have no transportation.  There will also be a page of links for information online.

Childbirth is a normal process.

Long before doctors took charge, women were helping women to give birth.

These women were called midwives.