Coconut Pumpkin Lactation Muffins


“Coconut Pumpkin Lactation Muffins” |

If you are anything like me and live in a climate with seasons, than you know the beauty of the changing tree colours and the icy deep freeze that sets into your bones right around November 1… (that might be a tad dramatic). I say this only because anyone who knows me, knows I am perpetually cold. If it was socially acceptable I would live in a Snuggie most of the day.

So as it happens, anything that keeps the chill out – tea, crock pot meals, fireplaces, and warming spices in delicious baked goods – is A-OK by me.

Grandma’s Don’t Need Lactation Muffins

This recipe happened by chance, as sort of a spinoff of my Banana Nut Lactation Muffin recipe. My mom was looking for some new flavours and I suggested she try my muffins, minus the brewers yeast – at age 60 something, I don’t think she needs any lactation support…at least I hope not!

Anyways, she had an open can of pumpkin puree and was looking to use it up. I suggested she substitute that for all or some of the bananas. Then for a little pop of sweet, use currents instead of chocolate. The rest is history. I added clove and cinnamon to my batch for that warming heat and voila! Fall inspired lactation muffins for all us mama’s who need a little extra something-something to get the milk-a-flowing!

Speaking of being cold all the time…

Let’s talk thyroid health and fertility

Do you like my segue?

I’m literally typing this to you, eating a bowl of homemade bone broth and broccoli soup and shivering. I’m cold ALL THE TIME.

Because of this and my 2 year struggle with “unexplained infertility” I’ve always suspected something was up with my thyroid. So I’ve been tested up the ying-yang for any possible connection and nada, my thyroid is perfectly healthy, I’m just a major baby!

However, for many, being in a constant state of chill, can be a sign that the thyroid is slowing down. (1)

(Hypo)Thyroid Health and Fertility

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland (think internal thermostat) slows down. This reduction in the thyroid hormone creates a cascading reduction of other important hormones- some of which affect fertility.

Common symptoms of hypothyroidism as it relates to fertility:

  • Weight gain
  • Menstrual problems
  • Lack or slowed ovulation
  • Increased risk of miscarriage, preeclampsia, premature birth and stillbirth

“Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism impair physical and mental performance, produce morbidity, and pose special risks for pregnancy and the developing fetus and neonate” (2)

What Causes Thyroid Disease?

“Imbalances in digestive function, overactive immune system, blood sugar dysregulation, adrenal malfunction, food allergies and sensitivities, particularly to gluten, and poor detoxification processes can upset optimal thyroid health. Stress has a negative impact on thyroid hormone production… Adrenal insufficiency and low levels of cholesterol contribute to inadequate sex hormones, which can compound low thyroid conditions”. (3)

As you can clearly see, there is no single reason why people develop thyroid conditions. In my humble opinion, after seeing clients with thyroid issues for the past 11 years, many of the factors listed above are lifestyle related – stress, digestion, food allergies and sensitivities . The good news, we can control many of the above variables.  Don’t get me wrong, each person is unique in their needs and therefore in how they respond to positive change, but isn’t it comforting to know we CAN do something about it?

3 Steps You Can Take Today

1.Get Blood Work Done

Unfortunately, many times just the TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) is looked at – the reality is that there are several factors involved in thyroid health.

Please have the following checked and reviewed with your healthcare practitioner:

  • TSH
  • Free T4
  • Free T3
  • Reverse T3
  • Thyriod Peroxidase Antibodies
2.Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff

Studies clearly point to stress being a culprit for altered thyroid function. “As an adaptive response to stress, there is a change in the serum level of various hormones including CRH, cortisol, catecholamines and thyroid hormone…long-term exposure to stress may lead to many deleterious consequences leading to various endocrine disorders”. (4)

Now, we can’t eliminate your stress – we all have it and some of us just deal with it better than others.  However, if you are experiencing higher levels of stress than you think is reasonable, here is a list of my go-to stress management techniques:

  • Breathing quietly to Snatum Kaur’s Long Time Sun
  • Essential Oils. I use lavender in my diffuser and on my pillow to help me relax.
  • Walk my dog. Gibson is a furry and lovable ball of energy and just being around him makes me happy.
  • I LOVE sleep. Probably more than the average person. This is healing. Aim for about 8 hours per night if and whenever you can.
  • Acupuncture. This works ladies. If you haven’t read My Story, please do. My fertility journey was about as stressful as it gets. I used acupuncture to help relax me – mind and body – plus the added bonus that it was used for fertility support too!

Lyndsey’s go-to list

  • Exercise! As per her bio she is a cardio fan.  The first thing she did when she got home from learning about her miscarriage?  Went for a long (tear-filled) run.  She must have been quite the sight, sobbing and running down the streets.
  • Make a list. Lyndsey loves her lists.  Particularly, ticking things OFF her lists.  In fact she told me she sometimes retroactively adds items to her lists she’s already done so she can get the satisfaction of seeing it crossed off!  She finds lists help organize her thoughts, prioritize her to-dos (which can be stressors) and help her manage her time.
  • Talk it out. She usually gives her Mom a call (you always need your Mom – no matter how old you are!).  Finding someone who is a reasonable sounding board is always helpful!
3.Shut Down Sugar

Here it is in simple terms.

Reducing sugar helps hormones rebalance. Doing this decreases the consumption of unnecessary and empty calories, which encourage fat loss and reduce inflammation in the body (aka stress). Reduced stress helps to lower and rebalance blood sugars – which create endocrine imbalances (think thyroid disease). See how that works?

Whoa! All that from a lactation muffin recipe! lol.

Coconut Pumpkin Lactation Muffin

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 over ripe banana
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp clove
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 3 tbsp ground flax
  • 4 tbsp brewers yeast
  • ¼ cup coconut flakes (unsweetened)
  • 1 cup gluten free all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup dried currents (no sugar added)
  • 2 tbsp honey (can omit for sugar free version)
  1. Directions
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  3. Line muffin tray with paper liners
  4. Mix together all the wet ingredients in one bowl and all the dry in a second bowl
  5. Once combined, scoop mixture into muffin cups to about 3/4 full
  6. Bake until firm – 15-20 min
  7. Makes 16 muffins

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