How Chinese Postpartum Nourishing Foods Promote Recovery?

How Chinese Postpartum Nourishing Foods Promote Recovery

Traditional Chinese culture treats the postpartum period with utmost care, emphasising the need for mums to ‘confinement’ – a time to rest, recover, and rejuvenate. And the important part of this involves eating special foods known as confinement food. This diet is made to help mums heal their bodies postpartum. Plus, it also promotes lactation in the woman breastfeeding. Now, you might ask, how do Chinese postpartum nourishing foods help mums to recover? Let’s look closer and find out how it actually works.

3 Stages to Recovery with Confinement Nutrition

During the confinement period, it’s recommended for a woman to eat foods that help her body recover. This eating plan is divided into three stages, each targeting the healing of different parts of her body. 

Stage 1: Uterus Recovery & Wound Healing

During the first week of postpartum, the uterus would begin to contract. It is important to aid the uterus in healing while still supporting lactation. In traditional Chinese medicine, this is the time when mums need to consume foods and herbs to help reduce any blood stagnation and clear lochia. Some recommended foods and herbs are also to support mothers with lactation. 

At this moment, mums need to eat foods full of protein and iron to help heal and regain their strength. This includes pork, chicken, dang gui herbs, chuan xiong herbs, sheng hua soup and hong hua herbs, just to name a few. You can find lots of iron-rich foods on the Chinese confinement food menu, such as lotus and red dates chicken soup and uterine tonic soup. These soups are perfect for mums in confinement because the meat is soft and easy to eat while keeping mummies hydrated.

Stage 2: Digestive Well-Being & Tissue Repair

Studies show that a woman’s body will produce 50%-60% more blood during pregnancy because of the baby. After having a baby, some blood might stay in the body, causing swelling. In traditional Chinese medicine, the second week of postpartum is when mums must eat the right foods to help their stomach and digestive system work better. After delivery, the mother’s body is believed to have lower qi and lesser warmth. Consuming foods that are nutritious and “warm” in nature would help to provide mothers more qi and warmth. They can eliminate extra water and heal faster. 

Pig’s trotter, ginger, sesame oil, red dates, fried eggs, barley, and other whole-grain products are some foods that new mums should eat. Additionally, herbs like ginseng root are great during this period. It helps replenish qi after the bleeding has stopped.

Stage 3: Nourish Qi & Blood

The final part of confinement, the last two weeks, is about strengthening your physique and improving your immune health. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is used to nourish qi and blood. Eating the right confinement foods plays an important role in helping you feel energetic again and getting you ready for any future pregnancies. Mums might feel sore in their belly area, have cold hands and feet, and get tired easily. So, it’s important to work on getting your blood flowing better, keeping yourself warm, and eating foods packed with important nutrients.

Some confinement foods you should consume include vegetables, lotus seeds, dried longan, seafood low in mercury content, and tian qi blood tonifying soup. Herbs like ginseng, bei qi, dang shen wolfberries, and red date tea are great for helping your blood and energy move better.

Popular Traditional Chinese Confinement Meal

Here’s a look at some of the most beloved traditional Chinese confinement meals, cherished not just by new mums but by all who taste them:

Braised Pork Trotter in Black Vinegar: This dish is a cornerstone of the confinement diet, revered for its ability to replenish “qi” and blood, expel “wind” and cold, remove lochia, and promote blood circulation. Its collagen content is also crucial for strengthening joints and ligaments, making it a must-have for postpartum recovery.

Ginseng Nourishing Soup: A vital tonic for the first week post-birth, Blood and qi-nourishing ginseng soup is one of our signature Chinese confinement soup, designed to revitalise the body, enhancing energy levels and provide nourishment to key organs such as the lungs, spleen, and stomach. Not only does it energise the body, but it also imparts a calming effect. 

Braised Sesame Oil Chicken: Known for its fragrant and comforting taste, Sesame Oil Chicken is not just a popular dish; it’s a traditional remedy believed to replenish blood and maintain body warmth, making it a staple in the confinement diet.

Fenugreek Green Papaya Milky Fish Soup: Popular among breastfeeding mums, this soup is celebrated for effectively boosting breast milk supply. Green papaya, fennel and fenugreek are known lactogenic ingredients and are crucial in promoting lactation, offering a delicious way to meet this essential need.

Red Dates Tea: A staple beverage during confinement, red dates tea, combined with dried red dates, longan, and wolfberries, is pivotal in restoring vitality, promoting recovery, and keeping the body warm. Its widespread consumption underscores its valued role in postpartum care.


Understanding the importance of the postpartum period, it’s clear that taking special care of new mums is crucial. This time is all about healing, getting strength back, and bonding with the new baby. Eating the right foods plays a big part in this process, helping mums to heal and feel strong again.

That’s why we offer Tian Wei Signature’s best Chinese confinement food delivery service in Singapore. Our meals are crafted, TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and dietitian-reviewed, ensuring you receive balanced nutrition through our confinement meal delivery. Best of all, they are delivered fresh and warm to your doorstep, giving you more time to focus on your recovery and cherish those precious moments with your newborn. Don’t hesitate to make your postpartum journey easier with our range of confinement meal plans!