The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth

Length: 20 hrs and 7 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (200 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

With more than 1.3 million video views each month and over 52 million total views on her YouTube channel, Howland's (aka Mama Natural) funny but informational videos have empowered millions of women to embrace natural pregnancy and parenting. Now Howland is turning to books, offering up the first week-by-week natural pregnancy book for soon-to-be moms.

For the last half century, control over childbirth has been in favor of doctors. Many pregnancy guidebooks are conventional, fear based, and written by male physicians deeply entrenched in the old-school medical model of birth.

But change is underway. A groundswell of women are taking back their pregnancies and childbirth and embracing a natural way. Genevieve Howland, the woman behind the enormously popular Mama Natural blog and YouTube channel, has created an inspiring, fun, and informative guide that demystifies natural pregnancy and walks Mom through the process one week at a time.

The Mama Natural's Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth is the modern (and yet ancient) approach to pregnancy and childbirth. "Natural" recognizes that pregnancy and birth are normal and that having a baby is a wondrous biological process and rite of passage - not a medical condition. This book draws upon the latest research showing how beneficial and life changing natural birth is for both babies and moms.

Full of weekly advice and tips for a healthy pregnancy, Howland details vital nutrition to take, natural remedies for common and troublesome symptoms, and the appropriate (and inappropriate) use of interventions. Peppered throughout are positive birth and pregnancy stories from women of all backgrounds (and all stages of their natural journeys) along with advice and insights from a certified nurse midwife (CNM) plus a registered nurse (RN), a doula, and a lactation consultant. Encouraging, well researched, and fun, The Mama Natural's Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth will be an essential companion for women everywhere to embrace natural pregnancy and reap all the benefits for both baby and mama.

©2017 Mama Natural Productions, LLC (P)2017 Simon & Schuster, Inc.
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Captivating but misleading

As a physician and mother-to-be, I couldn't get through more than a few chapters of this book before returning it because of its prolific factual inaccuracies. The book enthusiastically champions many theories not held up by science or controlled studies. I could not bear to put my future child at the risk of this poorly researched book and its misleading presentation of information.

For example, the book waxes on about the dangers of prenatal vitamins by citing the countless disastrous consequences of vitamin overdose. Most prenatal vitamins on the market these days do not have the high doses necessary to cause the toxicities mentioned. One would have to take multiple prenatal vitamins over the advised dosages to achieve the levels of toxicities described. Warning patients against prenatal vitamins because of non-existent harms, or worse, encouraging patients to use vitamins with inferior dosages ("whole food vitamins"), only puts them at risk of future birth anomalies. On a population level, this type of mis-information could have public health consequences.

As another example, the book also promotes the use of raspberry leaf tea, though countless controlled studies have not shown any benefit of this tea and cannot rule out its harm.

I could go on. The book is filled from cover to cover with inaccuracies such as these. It has more fluff than substance. Please don't put the health of your pregnancy and future child at risk by following this book's advice.

32 people found this helpful

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Great week by week guide

I think this a great book, especially for the first time natural minded mama. Most of the information is really great and really valuable. However, I do have an issue with some of the "natural" skin care she suggests especially when it comes to chloasma. For the love of the skin on your face DO NOT put lemon juice on your face in any concentration ESPECIALLY if you are going to be out in the sun. It will not help to lighten you chloasma and in fact, could make things worse. Citric acid like that found in lemon and lime are known to cause photodermatitis, it is a chemical reaction between the citric acid and the uv rays and can cause a very severe sunburn. This is very well known and I am surprised it made it into the book. Furthermore, when it comes to this type of hormonal hyperpigmentation there is unfortunately very little that can be done to reduce its appearance, just make sure you are wearing an SPF 30 every day and wearing a hat when you will be exposed to the sun for long periods of time. Some of the other skin care things are questionable as well but not as offensive as that, please if you are having issues with your skin go see a dermatologist or a skin care specialist, they will be able to point you in a better direction. In the case of skin care natural is not always better.

1 person found this helpful

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Did not like, do not recommend

The book was too extreme and too natural for my taste. The worst part is in the opening chapter they make it seem like it's going to be a balance of natural methods and what's best for mom and what she feels is best for her, but no if you are not pro completely natural and all organic dont bother. I could not even finish and felt it was a waste of money, sadly. I'm open to natural birth and organic foods but this takes the topic too far and bad talks OB doctors, medical advice and interventions which can save lives when necessary.

4 people found this helpful

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Terrible advice that left me paranoid!

They defy medical science in many parts and literally go as far as stating that you should turn off your cell phone and WiFi to avoid harming your baby. While I am all about keeping things healthy and natural, this book takes it to an extreme. Worst pregnancy book ever!

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Wonderful book!

This book was very specific and gave helpful advice. I would recommend it to new parents.

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Pretentious

Had some good information but I could tell from my own research that there was a lot of biased and misleading/misinformation in this book. A lot of cherry picking. Just on a personal note too, the narrator sounds so pretentious it was so annoying the whole book..

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Very informative

The things I learned in this book! I love it! And the natural recipes that come with it! I also now have the hard copy to go back threw it and listen to the audio all over again!

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loved this mama natural guide!

This was a great guide for any mama who is looking for natural options! I am 9months pregnant and would definitely recommend this to any mama. Great tips and information.

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I love this book!

I am currently 14 weeks pregnant and I love this book. Listening to each week ahead of time has truly helped me to understand what to expect, how my baby is developing, what my baby needs most at certain times, how my body will change, and provides healthy and unique meal options. Though the book is for a “natural” momma as shown in the title, I am very medical and plan on delivering in a hospital, and yet I feel everything in the book is benefitting me in some way. I had no idea about all of the options out there, and listening to this book gives me confidence each week in my decision making.

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I wish every pregnant woman had one

This is a fun, informative, educative amazing tool that every mama should have. None has ever taught me all the things I've learned thanks to Mama Natural. I've even been able to teach things to mamas that have already been through the process! thanks to all who made this happen.

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  • SK
  • 03-28-18

Voice incredibly annoying

Long
Boring
Repetitive
Narrator's voice so annoying
What does crunchy even mean?!
Very biased towards Mama Natural online products/services
Didn't enjoy.

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  • michelle Culley
  • 12-11-18

best natural birth care even for Australian mummas

completely comprehensive, research based, crunchy mumma, natural pregnancy & birth care book. amazing for mothers, midwives, Doulas and other birth professionals. despite being an Australian doula I found the book completely relatable and translatable . some American birth rules & regulations are different to Australia but the main "natural" content is absolutely usable. loved this book and plan to get a hard copy as a resource in the future

2 people found this helpful