Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

healthy pregnancy

I want to discuss this topic today, as it does not matter what gender of baby you desire, the most important thing is that that baby be healthy.  In what follows, I will give you some tips for a healthy pregnancy so that you create a healthy baby too.

  1. Prenatal Vitamins/Folic Acid – Start taking a multivitamin even before you get pregnant. A prenatal multivitamin is best.   This is so important, because you need to ensure that you are increasing your intake of folate/folic acid.  Folic acid is found in foods, but many women do not get enough in their diets.  Adequate folic acid can prevent the development of spina bifida (a neural tube defect) in utero.  The neural tube develops within the first weeks of pregnancy, before most women know that they are pregnant.
  2. Physical Activity – You should always consult your physician about the level of physical activity that you are allowed, as it will depend if there are any risks with your pregnancy.  For a healthy pregnancy with no problems, a general rule of thumb is physical activity at a level similar to what you did before your pregnancy.  However, you should speak to your doctor if you did resistance training beforehand, because it may not be recommended if there are risks associated with your pregnancy.  If you did not exercise heavily before you got pregnant, this is not the time to start.  Keeping physically active, however, though will assist with your comfort throughout the pregnancy, and during the labour, delivery, and recuperation.
  3. Healthy Eating & Drinking – This seems like common-sense, but it still needs to be mentioned.  Healthy eating means choosing a wide variety of foods from all four food groups, or substitutions if you are vegetarian or vegan.  Your body will need more iron and calcium than normal as it creates the little baby inside of you.  The prenatal vitamin is still recommended to make up the gaps in your diet.  As well, avoid empty calories such as those found in pop, and sugary drinks for example.  It will be harder to lose the weight afterwards.  Limit the amount of caffeine you consume.  Personally, I found it very easy to give up cola during my pregnancies, as the thought of it turned my stomach.  Lastly, no amount of alcohol is safe.  Ever.  Period.
  4. Limit Stress – Studies have shown that mothers who were stressed during pregnancy have a higher chance of having babies that are more likely to cry and be harder to calm at birth.  This makes sense when you think that when you are under stress, your body reacts with increased stress hormones in your body.  The baby will also feel the effects of these extra stress hormones that have been circulating.

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