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Quick Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

Written by S.O.

Posted on February 19, 2016 at 7:27 pm

Asian pregnant woman make heart shape with hand on her stomach

Luckily we live in a world where pregnancy and parenting resources abound, containing a vast amount of helpful information for a healthful pregnancy. Keep reading to see some of our favorite prenatal tidbits for expecting mommas!

Change Your Diet to Suit Your Baby

Contrary to the public opinion that pregnant women are “eating for two”, they really only need to consume between 300-500 additional calories a day. These calories should take the form of healthy meals and snacks to ensure baby is eating well in there too. Here are some suggested guidelines:

  1. Do eat flaxseed! This superfood is jam-packed with goodies such as omega-3 fatty acids and extra fiber. It also helps lower cholesterol levels which can be on the rise during pregnancy.   
  2. Don’t consume much caffeine. Most medical experts cap it at about 200mg (11oz) of caffeine daily.
  3. Do eat small meals throughout the day as opposed to big ones. This can help stave off lethargy, giving you little energy surges to replace caffeine.
  4. Don’t opt for sandwiches containing deli meats, as they can harbor listeria, a bacteria that can be very harmful to unborn babies.
  5. Do drink a surplus of fluids, water in particular (about 10 glasses a day), and be sure to avoid artificial colorings and additives.
  6. Don’t ingest much mercury – avoid foods high in mercury including swordfish, mackerel or dark tunas.
  7. Do eat certain types of low-mercury seafood that contain beneficial omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon and shrimp.
  8. Don’t take any herbal or over the counter medicine without speaking to your doctor or pharmacist first.

Pregnancy Safety Tips

  • Quit smoking, and also avoid second hand smoke at all costs as the irritants can be detrimental to your little one.
  • Avoid harsh chemicals, such as those found in strong cleaning products.
  • Stop gardening and changing cat litter to avoid toxoplasmosis, a parasite strain commonly found in cats and soil that could be potentially fatal to a vulnerable unborn child.
  • When driving, wear your seat belt across your thighs as opposed to over your belly, and sit as far away from an air bag as possible to avoid the potentially tragic repercussions of its deployment.
  • Get plenty of sleep and rest. Pregnancy can be exhausting and come with heavy fatigue. It is important not to overwork yourself, as your baby can be in distress if you aren’t getting enough rest. Remember, you are resting for two!

Pregnancy Fitness

While you probably shouldn’t be participating in competitive gymnastics while pregnant, you definitely should be getting regular exercise. Exercise can bring a multitude of benefits to pregnancy, such as keeping your weight under control (if you gain too much, it will be harder to shed the pounds post-birth), switching up the routine for your tiny tenant (the movement can even be soothing for some babies), and helping prepare your body better for the tall task of giving birth. Some great pregnancy exercises include:

  1. Swimmingthis is one of the best exercises for pregnant women, as it is very easy on the joints and can help you keep fit without working too hard.
  2. Stretching – there are many stretching exercises such as pelvic tilts, that can help ready the body for birth, and avoid muscle cramps that sometimes come along with pregnancy.
  3. Walking – Walking is a safe form of exercise you can do all the way through your pregnancy. If you are a runner, you don’t necessarily have to give it up cold turkey when you are pregnant; there are certain guidelines you can follow to safely jog during certain times of your pregnancy – but only if you are an experienced runner, as it can be dangerous if not done properly. 
  4. Prenatal Yoga – tailored yoga activities can help strengthen your muscles so you are better able to carry around a baby and all of their accessories after you give birth.

Parenting Preparation

Educate yourself about what to expect during the labor and delivery, as well as premature labor warning signs to look out for. Pack a hospital bag in advance of your expected due date and remember to include important items such as your camera (with batteries and memory card!) and insurance information. If it is your first pregnancy, you can research different classes to take such as childbirth classes, breast-feeding classes or parenting classes with your partner or a close family member.

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