I’m not very familiar with TCM, and during my first confinement with N, I didn’t really follow the traditional confinement rules very closely. I had the red date tea, and drank the different herbal soups daily, but I didn’t do the herbal bath, because I broke out in a nasty rash after using it.
This time round, I’m trying to be a little more diligent because I have to care for two babies. I spoke to a Mummamia representative, who patiently explained the benefits of their various products to me, and I felt that there was no harm in trying out some of the main products.
My primary concern is my milk supply, so I got my mum to prepare the Mummamia Nursing Herbal Soup after I gave birth, and as I mentioned in my post on breastfeeding the twins, my milk came in a lot earlier. I think milk supply is something that most mums worry about, and although different products work for different people, there’s no harm in trying this nursing herbal soup, to see if it works for you. I’ve just started drinking it again, since my supply dropped when Meimei was hospitalised, and hopefully, my supply will increase!
Nursing Herbal Soup (link) Effects: Promotes milk supply, reduces engorgement discomfort and reduces rick of breast related inflammation.
Nursing Herbal Soup with pork knuckle
Nursing herbal soup with fish bones
When I got blocked ducts during the first month, I took the Mammgation-Duce capsules, as well as got my massage lady to come and help me to clear the ducts. I don’t know if it was the capsules or the massage that helped, but I’d like to think that it was a combination of both that helped to clear my ducts. Once my ducts weren’t blocked, I stopped taking the capsules, and continued latching the babies as usual.
Mammgation-Duce capsules (link) Effects: – Promote blood circulation, dissipate blood stasis, regulate vital energy to ease pain. – Promotes healthy internal flow, clear block breast duct to enhance better flow – Soothe bad engorgement due to irregular flow of “Qi”
During my confinement, I drank plenty of red dates tea, since I wasn’t supposed to drink plain water. The pre-packed red dates tea was convenient for my confinement lady, as all she had to do was open a packet of it, and boil the ingredients with water. However, she felt that the amount of red dates in the packets wasn’t enough, and liked to add more red dates for me, to make it sweeter. I think this is up to one’s personal preference, so if you’re not fussy, it should be fine. I was especially thirsty during this period, and drank so much of the red dates tea that I often finished whatever she boiled for me before bedtime, so I ended up drinking some plain water as well. It’s very important to be well-hydrated when breastfeeding!
Pre-packed Red Dates Tea (link) Effects: This is to avoid excessive water retention or getting “cold” during the period. Red Dates are rich in Iron and Vitamin C.
Another staple during confinement is the different kinds of soups that are to be consumed daily. For my first confinement, my mum went to a medical hall and asked for a variety of herbs for confinement purposes, and they packed the herbs into individual portions. The Mummamia pre-packed confinement herbs work in the same way, and there are five different packets, each serving a different purpose. I liked that the packets came clearly labelled with what the day’s herbs were supposed to do, and were vacuum packed, so I didn’t have to worry about the herbs turning bad before they could be used. I also kept the packets in my fridge to be extra safe. Each packet was sufficient for two servings, ie lunch and dinner, so I always had a bowl of hot soup to nourish my body.
I’m not a fan of herbal stuff, and was apprehensive about taking all these herbal soups, mainly because I was afraid they would be bitter or taste bad. I was pleasantly surprised that although one or two smelled a little too “herbal” for my liking, they actually tasted okay, and I particularly liked the taste of the Day 1 soup. My confinement lady would usually boil the soups with either chicken or pork for more flavour, and I found myself perspiring a lot after drinking the soups, which she said was due to my water retention.
The pre-packed confinement herbs for soups come in a box of 10, so if you’re afraid that you won’t like the taste of the soups, you can just get a box to try, rather than have to commit to the full 28 days (you’ll need three boxes for that).
Pre-packed Confinement Herbs (link) Effects: After 9 months of pregnancy and giving birth, post-partum women experience deficiency in blood and Qi, weakening uterus that leads to “coldness” in body, back ache, appetite disorders, discomfort from bloated stomach due to excessive wind, discharge of lochia/ heavy discharge, unable to produce breast milk due to blocked breast duct, fatigue-ness, constipation problem, as well as heavy water retention in body. Hence, traditional Chinese believe that proper confinement bring about healthier body and mind. Professionally prescribed by TCM Physician, pre-packed herbs focus on 5 main confinement recovery stages, namely: Expel, Remove, Rejuvenate, Recuperate, Tonify.
Day 1:Nourish “Qi” & Tonify Yin Day 2: Strengthening Spleen & Kidney Day 3: Boosting Milk Supply & dissipate stasis Day 4: Rejuvenate “Qi” & Blood Day 5: Invigorate kidney and Reduce Water Retention Day 6: continues as Day 1
Day 3’s soup
The herbs that were used
The Confinement Herbal Bath (Mom Series) is supposed to ease water retention and expel wind, and this time round, I was diligent about using it to bathe daily. My confinement lady would boil it for me, then add hot water to the bucket, so that I would have enough to even wash my hair with it if I wanted. I liked the smell of it, and thought it even smelled good enough to drink (don’t worry, I didn’t try). I didn’t break out in rashes this time round, which was a relief, and I liked that I didn’t feel sticky after bathing with the herbs.
Confinement Herbal Bath (Mom Series) (link) Effects: After childbirth, women are physically weak, low immunity, therefore could easily catch cold, and infected with bacteria. Ban Kah Chai Mom Series Confinement Herbal Bath mainly helps mother to expel wind, improve blood circulation and reduce after-birth pain. Main Ingredients: – Man Jin Zi – warming “meridian” and dispelling cold – Balsamiferou Blumea Herb (Da Feng Ai) – Dispelling cold, regulates “meridian”, stops bleeding and relieves pain – Lemongrass – Dispelling wind, reducing oedema
Speaking of expelling wind, I took the Gold Brand Zhui Feng Su Ho Wan when I was in the hospital, and also during my confinement. I didn’t take it regularly, but I noticed that I passed a lot of gas. I’m not sure if it was caused by the pills, the herbal bath, or the confinement herbal soups, but now that my confinement is over, I definitely don’t pass as much gas as I did back then, so it’s probably due to one or all of the products! Gold Brand Zhui Feng Su Ho Wan (link) Effects: Useful for Mummies during confinement to expel wind, consumed half an hour before meal for better appetite. Traditionally used for symptomatic relief of stomachache, headache, mild vomiting, cough, cold and expel wind.
I didn’t manage to convince my confinement lady to use the Confinement Herbal Bath (Baby Series) for the twins, as she insisted that it was better for them to be bathed with plain water, because they were very small in size. I figured it was easier to let her bathe them in her preferred manner than to risk having a conflict with her over this, so we still haven’t tried it yet. Perhaps I’ll try it when they’re slightly older, though I’m not sure if the intended effect will still be achieved!
Confinement Herbal Bath (Baby Series) (link) Effect: Mainly helps the baby to discharge toxin from body, mild jaundice and reduce prickly heat problem such as rashes. It helps baby feels more comfortable after bath. This is also suitable for adult heat rashes.
The Mummamia products were delivered with a guide on the days which the items should be used, and I found that quite helpful. Most Chinese women have to be in confinement for a minimum of 28 days, and even if you’re not very traditional, you will at least consume the daily herbal soups and red date tea. For those of us who don’t know what kinds of herbs we need, Mummamia’s pre-packaged herbs will definitely come in handy, and take away the problem of having to get the correct herbs. It’s also a lot more convenient to do all your shopping online, so that you don’t have to lug the items home on your own. Delivery is free for purchases above $100, and will be done within 1 to 2 working days upon verification of payment. You can also purchase them from places such as Thomson Medical Centre’s Parentcraft shop, Mt Alvernia Hospital’s Retail Pharmacy, Spring Maternity, and 1010 Mother & Child.
If you don’t plan to hire a confinement lady, it’s definitely a good choice to buy all your confinement herbs and products from Mummamia, because it’s so much more convenient. There are a lot of things to be done when you bring a newborn home, and I’m a firm believer of making life easier for myself. With the pre-packaged herbs, you just need to select the correct packet of herbs, and boil it with your choice of meat. Even if you get it wrong and use Day 2’s herbs on Day 1, I honestly don’t think it makes that much of a difference.
Even though I had a confinement lady to prepare the soups for me, I like that the herbs are pre-packaged, so that my confinement lady doesn’t need to spend extra time mixing and matching the different herbs for me daily. There’s also no chance of her accidentally omitting a particular type of herb! I’m also a fan of online shopping, so the fact that I can place my order online, and have the herbs are delivered right to my doorstep, is a big plus point for me.
Would I recommend Mummamia to my friends? Of course! Everything that I tried was pretty nice-tasting, but more importantly, nothing tasted bad or bitter, so that is good enough for me. If convenience matters as much to you as it does to me, then I’m sure you’d prefer to shop online for your confinement needs, and have everything delivered to your home. Happy shopping, and enjoy your confinement with Mummamia! I know I did.
*Disclaimer: I was given the above items for the purpose of this review. All photos and opinions are, as always, my own.