What You Can Do to Have a Healthy Pregnancy
If you’re expecting a baby, you want to do everything you can to keep your body healthy and strong for your little one’s arrival. Every aspect of your lifestyle, such as your diet and your level of physical activity, plays a central role in your overall well-being. Your baby is relying on you to maintain a birth-friendly lifestyle and body, so everything you do matters in the long run.
You’ll be happy to know that staying healthy as a soon-to-be mom is easier than you think, and it can be accomplished in a few simple steps. Here are some useful guidelines for staying healthy and in shape to foster the ideal environment for your new child.
Take a Prenatal Vitamin
Throughout your pregnancy, you need to ensure that you’re fortifying your body with essential nutrients. The most effective way to do this is to take the best prenatal vitamins. These supplements help to ensure that you’re getting the nutrition your body needs to have a successful pregnancy. In addition to providing key vitamins and minerals, prenatal vitamins offer a special mix of nutrients that play a big role in supporting a healthy baby. Many vitamins are formulated to enhance your baby’s brain function and cognitive development, and some are even designed to reduce the risk of birth defects.
Even if you try to maintain a healthy diet during pregnancy, there’s no way of knowing whether you’re getting all of the vital nutrients that you need. That’s why prenatal vitamins are a must while you’re still carrying your baby. Because your body requires more vitamins and minerals than usual during pregnancy, you need to properly cater to its needs by taking a prenatal vitamin.
Watch What You Eat
What you eat during pregnancy directly affects the health of your baby. If you wouldn’t want your child to eat something, make sure you don’t put it into your body. That said, here are the main foods that you should focus on eating while pregnant:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains
- Lean meats
- Wild salmon
- Nuts and seeds
It’s also important to ensure that you’re drinking enough water on a daily basis. Water is just as healthy for your baby as it is for you, and drinking enough of it builds new cells, flushes out harmful toxins, and strengthens your baby with essential nutrients.
You already know how important it is to maintain an active lifestyle, but you may not know that it’s even more important when you’re carrying a baby. Adequate exercise during pregnancy is crucial to many aspects of your overall health, such as weight control, improved circulation, stress relief, and a healthier mood. All of these benefits can allow you to maintain a positive state of mind and keep your body strong during pregnancy.
While regular exercise is vital, it’s important to remember that too much can do more harm than good. Be sure to limit your exercise to more moderate activities, such as brisk walking or yoga. If you aren’t sure how much physical activity is healthy for you during pregnancy, discuss this with your doctor.
It goes without saying, but you should be sure to eliminate all harmful substances like alcohol and drugs while carrying a baby. These toxins may increase your risk of a miscarriage or certain birth defects. Additionally, if you have a smoking habit, now is the time to drop it. Not only can cigarette smoke decrease the flow of oxygen to your baby’s developing lungs, but it may also lead to other serious problems, such as preterm birth. Your baby deserves the healthiest version of you, so be sure to take the time to carefully and honestly evaluate your habits while you’re still pregnant.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is vital to both your mental and physical well-being, which means it should be a priority while you’re pregnant. Aim for about 7-9 hours a night and make sure you’re resting in an undisturbed environment that’s free of distractions. If you’re having trouble sleeping, try to lower the temperature in your room and ensure that your bedroom is completely dark. It also helps to avoid eating a big meal too close to bedtime. Remember that it’ll be tough to get a good night’s sleep once your baby arrives, so try to enjoy the peace and quiet while you still can.
Reduce Your Caffeine Intake
Pregnancy tends to make you sleepier than normal, so it can be tempting to up your caffeine dosage. However, this usually isn’t recommended. Large amounts of caffeine may increase your risk of miscarriage and cause other problems related to the health of your baby. Some studies have even suggested that high levels of caffeine may cause your baby to be born underweight. While it’s still okay to have your daily cup of coffee, make sure you aren’t overdoing it. Most experts claim that exceeding 200mg of caffeine may be harmful to your child, so keep it under this limit.
Stress is known to have many detrimental effects on your health and well-being. From digestive problems to fatigue, chronic stress puts your long-term health at risk. To ensure that you’re maintaining a healthy state of mind that keeps you and your baby strong, try to keep your stress levels in check. Calming activities such as reading, meditation, and knitting can help center you if you’re struggling with heightened stress or anxiety. Not only will you feel better once you manage your symptoms, but you’ll also be better equipped to handle your pregnancy and birth.
Stay Healthy for You and Your Baby
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is what’s best for both you and your little one. While it might seem complicated to build and maintain habits that support your baby’s well-being, it’s only a matter of listening to your body and ensuring that you’re providing it with everything it needs. As you advance on your journey towards birth, remember to keep these tips in mind for a healthy and stress-free pregnancy.