Healthy Baby Making Starts Before Conception: A Mom’s Thoughts A Year Post Surgery

piper post surgery

A Year Has Gone By…

In just a few days a year will have gone by since our youngest had an invasive surgery on her skull.

She was only four months old when this surgery was performed and it was as terrifying as it sounds to have to admit her to an operating room for a 4-6 hour surgery at such a young age.

Our sweet pea was born with Craniosynostosis which is a structural abnormality of the skull. She was born with a swollen eye, a crooked nose, and one of the natural sutures or cracks in her skull prematurely fused together in the womb.


Not terribly common, but not terribly uncommon either this particular abnormality happens in about 1 in 2500 newborns. Many times this structural problem is caught late in a child’s first year of life, which makes it difficult to perform surgery on a child who later wants to practically jump out of the hospital bed when they need to rest and heal. Plus, a few days post surgery their eyes are swollen shut and the poor things can only hear and not see you. Since our little one had this surgery at only four months of age, it seemed to make the surgery and recovery process much more smooth than some of the other parents’ whose children had the surgery when they were quite a bit older than four months.

I feel blessed that I asked to see a specialist only weeks after our little Doodle was born when it was clear that her forehead on her left side was becoming flat and not round, like it naturally should. A researcher by nature, I had self diagnosed her even before we had to see the plastic surgeon. Although, I don’t really recommend this “google” type of self-diagnosis I turned out to be right and Doodle had to have the exact surgery that I had suspected she would.

I found in my research that there are two camps of surgeons; those who like to do the surgery between 4-6 months and others who like to do the surgery 6 mos or older, but I believe that all surgeons prefer to do it before a year, if possible. Our surgery was performed in Winston-Salem, NC at Brenner’s Children’s Hospital where they desire to do this surgery between 4-6 months. The reason for these time discrepancies is not for safety concerns, but instead for the desired outcome of the head shape of the patient. Some doctors believe that there is really no difference in the structural outcome if the surgery is performed earlier rather than later.


Doctors are mostly unsure of the cause of this problem I have my own suspicions. Genetics does seem to play a common theme in some cases, but not in ours. But, in some form or fashion it is all due to genetics isn’t it? Even if it isn’t a passed down “genetic problem.”

To form my theory on why my sweet pea developed this structural problem I look back to the research of Dr. Francis Pottenger. Dr. Pottenger conducted a famous cat study where he experimented by feeding some cats a nutritionally dense diet of raw meat, raw milk, organ meats and cod liver oil while others were fed only cooked meats and pasteurized milk.

What Dr. Pottenger found…

Dr. Pottenger found that the cats on the raw, nutrient dense diet were healthy, robust and produced healthy offspring. While those on the cooked diet that was void of nutrients continued to get sicker and sicker, lacked in energy, had difficult pregnancies and possessed many structural abnormalities. These cats had narrow faces, crowded jaws, frail bones and weak ligaments.

He saw cats that were on this diet of cooked and processed foods health begin to deteriorate quickly. He also found that it took three generations for these cats to get very very sick and four generations for their health to fully turn around. The good news here is that their health did turn around!

I believe that sweet pea blessings structural problem is a product of generations of the standard american diet for generations. I’m grateful that this structural problem can in a sense be “cured” by modern medicine, although some children don’t have this luxury. There are so many other structural problems out there.

And, if I were going to do it all over again…

If I were going to conceive a baby all over again I would wait 2-3 years between each child to allow my body to recover. You see, I have three children 5, 3, and 1. I believe that from generations of the Standard American Diet and having three children so very close together has depleted my body of the much-needed nutrients to produce a perfectly healthy offspring.

I am so grateful for the wonderful children that I have right now, but I do think restoring the body of the nutrients it needs is a good reason to wait to conceive children several years apart other than simply spacing out their years for family dynamics sake. Most American parents I know don’t ever look at the nutritional implications of having children so close together, they often only look at how far their children will be spaced in age when deciding to add to their family.

What can we Learn from the Surgery of My Baby?

It is very important for both partners involved in the baby making process to eat a nutrient dense diet before conception. Not only will this aid in the health of both mom and dad before conception, but it will also increase the odds of a healthy baby! And, as I mentioned above I also think that it is important when deciding to add to the family to also examine the health of mom and dad. Healthy cells in mom and dad will also increase the chances of producing a healthy baby.

If we look at history, we will find that our ancestors ate a nutrient dense diet to prepare for conception. I would love to see our culture move towards this age-old paradigm and do the same thing for the sake of our children.

What do I recommend?

  • Eat a Nutrient dense diet BEFORE conceiving
  • Eat a Nutrient dense diet DURING Pregnancy
  • Allow several years between children for the body to replenish its nutrient stores in order to build a healthy child in the womb.
  • If need be find an NTP to help you through the process.


Here is my little sweet pea today.


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