Advice for A Healthy Pregnancy
Discovering you’re pregnant means taking on the responsibility not only for your health but the health of your infant. The good news is that a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be hard. You can positively impact your and your baby’s health with some simple proactive steps.
Get started the right way with these nine simple tips to maintain a healthy pregnancy.
1) Take Prenatal Vitamins
Daily prenatal multivitamins can help make sure you’re getting the correct amount of the essential nutrients you and your baby need during pregnancy. Most prenatal vitamin supplements will include iron, calcium, and folic acid. Ask your physician for any other recommendations suitable for your needs.
2) Watch What You Eat
The old saying about you now “eating for two” actually carries a lot of weight. Eating healthy is particularly important for pregnant women as your baby will need proper nutrients for healthy and strong development. It’s recommended to eat plenty of fruits and green vegetables, whole grains, and foods low in saturated fat content but rich in calcium.
There are some foods women should avoid while pregnant such as soft cheeses, unpasteurized milk, rare meats (including some deli meats), liver, raw eggs (including mayonnaise), and sushi. Even cooked fish should be avoided to lower the chance of mercury getting into your system.
3) Regular Prenatal Care Checkups
Prenatal checkups are essential to maintaining a healthy pregnancy. It’s your best resource for monitoring your baby’s development and addressing any issues you may have along the way. Don’t skip out on these. Prenatal checkups will help you avoid complications and make sure you’re on the right track for a healthy birth.
4) Stay hydrated
You’re not only eating for two; you’re drinking for two as well. While pregnant, you’re going to need more water than you did before—especially during warmer months and after periods of exercise. As a general rule, try to take in eight or more cups each day.
5) Don’t Smoke
Pregnant or not, smoking is a staggeringly unhealthy habit that comes with a host of risks. While pregnant, the stakes for your baby are even more severe as smoking increases the risk of premature birth, miscarriage, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), low birth weight, and more.
Consult your physician if you’re having trouble quitting smoking.
6) Don’t Drink Alcohol
Alcohol can be a hazard to a baby’s health even during the earliest stages of pregnancy. It can even be risky before a woman knows she’s pregnant, which is why if you’re simply at the stage of planning a pregnancy, you should avoid drinking alcohol.
Alcohol increases the risk of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), which can lead to abnormal facial features, behavior issues, and learning disabilities.
7) Exercise Regularly
Daily exercise and being active is always good advice. It’s even better advice when pregnant. The healthier your body, the healthier your pregnancy, and the healthier your infant will be. Walking, yoga, and certain types of swimming are good places to start. Check with your doctor to determine the best kind of exercise for you.
8) Lower Stress
Stress is never a good thing, and you should do what you can to avoid stressful situations and maintain a sense of calm whenever possible. Get family and friends to help, if you can. Reducing stress can significantly benefit birth outcomes.
9) Get Some Sleep
A proper, comfortable, and well-supported might’s sleep is essential to keeping stress down and health up. An average of 8 hours is recommended at the very least. Many experts suggest sleeping on your left side to help improve blood flow.
When you come right down to it, many tips to a healthy pregnancy can be applied to your daily health regimen—pregnant or not. Much of it is common sense, and the rest is merely following the advice of your doctor.
Staying healthy shouldn’t be seen as a chore but an opportunity to make both you and your baby healthier.