Ten Health Tips for Pregnancy
Ten Top Health Tips during Pregnancy!
With the advances of modern medicine, pregnancy has nearly been seen as an illness. Many women feel pushed into giving birth in a very unnatural way. Although medical intervention is essential in certain cases, this is not always the case. It is important to view your pregnancy in a Holistic way, Mind, Body and Spirit. By taking excellent care of yourself you are naturally taking care of your baby. Having a healthy diet, exercise and support are all vital for a healthy baby. Trust your own instincts and allow yourself to be the best judge of your baby’s needs!
Feel wonderful during pregnancy; here are some of my tips to keep you and baby healthy & happy…
- Eat Healthy during pregnancy, plenty of fruit & fresh vegetables & herbs. Don’t over eat during pregnancy in order to have an optimal sized baby for your pelvic size, however; you will require an extra 300 calories per day, this can easily be achieved by eating five to six balanced meals per day. Heartburn sufferers should sip a glass of milk to ease the symptoms and avoid eating spicy foods. Try to eat at least every four hours. Avoid raw seafood, unpasteurised milk & soft cheeses because of possible causes of harmful bacteria.
- I highly recommend exercising during pregnancy. The fitter you are the more energy you will have to sustain labour. I work with many Mid-Wife’s and they tell me first hand that they know the women who have done Pregnancy Yoga, they are better able to cope during the birth. Pregnancy Yoga is good to increase muscular strength and flexibility – which is just what you need when you are getting into your delivery positions! Swimming a couple of times per week is also excellent to increase stamina, increase blood circulation and it releases those happy hormones – endorphins.
- Avoid alcohol – there are many studies out there with regard to drinking alcohol or not during pregnancy, I recommend avoiding alcohol whilst pregnant. Alcohol crosses the placenta, and reaches the developing foetus via your bloodstream, personally I don’t believe it is worth the risk.
- Smoking is out for pregnancy… if you are a smoker please give up while pregnant, on the other hand if you are a passive smoker at home, ask family members to smoke outside while you are pregnant.
- A good night’s sleep… I understand that this can be hard during pregnancy, as you may be getting up and down to the bathroom all night, but where you can, take a nap during the day if you find it hard to get your 8 hours sleep per night. I have a pregnancy cushion that I use during my pregnancy massage sessions, well worth investing in; they slide under your head, under your bump & rest between your legs, taking pressure off your lower back…particularly helpful in your third semester.
- Comfortable shoes & clothing – I see many women, who have swollen feet & ankles during pregnancy best to wear comfortable non-restricting shoes to help prevent any swelling. I also recommend raising up your feet on a cushion as often as you can, nice to put your feet up while watching the telly;) Wear comfortable clothing, that does not mean to say that you have to wear frumpy clothes, pregnant women our beautiful so don’t be afraid to show off your bump and wear clothes that make you feel great!
- Look after the man in your life…often I hear pregnant ladies talking about their partner and feeling that the men don’t understand what they are going through physically and mentally. Having a baby is a shared adventure, talk to him about your experience and involve him as much as you can. Remind him that the baby not only recognises the mother’s voice and touch but also his. Have some couple time, if you’re too tired in the evening to go out, try a quick lunch date or share a bath in the evening to keep your connection strong and healthy. Some couples experience problems with their sex lives during pregnancy, some men fear sex with their partner being pregnant, thinking in some way that sex will harm the baby or that they don’t want the unborn child to know that they are having sex. Lots of women on the other hand want more sex as their hormones are flying everywhere. Talking things out together without getting angry & try to reassure him that the baby is oblivious to what’s going on. Try to relax together and not put yourselves under too much pressure, set the mood for loving not fighting;)
- Prenatal Vitamins – Folic Acid is vital before and during pregnancy to decrease the risk of neural tube defects such as spina bifida, in the developing foetus. Recommended for all women in childbearing age – 400mcg per day. Take a prenatal vitamin each day as directed by your obstetrician or midwife.
- Drink plenty of fluids – at least eight to 10 glasses of water per day – avoiding caffeine and artificial colouring. Being dehydrated (usually caused from morning sickness) can cause nausea (and thus creating a vicious cycle, where you can’t drink anything, and therefore get more nauseous, which means you get more dehydrated and can’t drink anything, causing more severe nausea – etc.) The biggest fear with dehydration in the first and part of the second trimester is baby not having enough amniotic fluid. Dehydration in the third trimester is one of the three most common reasons for labour contractions and can cause premature labour. So drinking water is very very important!
- Life is precious, treasure yourself; this is my moto anyhow… Pregnancy massage is a wonderful way to connect with your baby, to rest, to relax, to relieve tension in your back and shoulders, to be nurtured and looked after; it improves circulation, increases energy levels, helps reduce anxiety and stress and breathlessness, to name but a few. Pregnancy Massage whether performed by your partner or a professional Pregnancy Massage Therapist has excellent health benefits for both you and your baby.