The nutrition of your unborn baby is the biggest determining factor of the quality of their lifelong health. And that nutrition relies entirely on the mother. Even before getting pregnant, you’ll want to maintain a healthy, balanced diet to prepare your body for conception — and then keep it going throughout the 9 months of pregnancy. So if you’re wondering what to eat during pregnancy, be sure to get plenty of fruits and veggies (preferably organic to reduce your exposure to toxins), whole grain carbohydrates, and high-quality protein like poultry, fish, eggs, nuts, and beans. Hydration will be important as well — drink lots of water!
Regular doctor’s visits
As soon as you know you’re pregnant, reach out to your obstetrician to schedule an appointment. You’ll want access to proper health care right off the bat to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible.
Folic acid, vitamin D, fish oil — prenatal supplements have the exact formulation your pregnant body needs to give your baby well-balanced nourishment. Be sure you’re getting at least 400 to 800 micrograms of folic acid every day and consider taking a fish oil supplement in addition to your prenatal vitamin. If you’re planning to get pregnant within the next few months, start taking a prenatal now so your body is not deficient of any nutrients from the get-go. Talk to your doctor for pregnancy nutrition recommendations specific for you.
Lots of rest
At some point in your pregnancy, you’ll probably feel tired to the bone. There’s not much to be done about it — except to sleep as much as you can. Growing a human is a lot of work and your body’s exhaustion is telling you that it needs some rest. Give yourself permission to politely decline invitations, delegate your responsibilities, leave some things undone, and give your body a break.
Educate yourself on life with baby
There’s no way to prepare for the intense journey that parenthood is — but you can help ease the transition by enrolling in a birth class. You’ll get an idea of how the birth may go (although every birth is different and impossible to predict) as well as some basic knowledge on caring for a newborn. You can also book a tour of wherever you’ll be giving birth (if outside of your home), whether in a hospital or birthing center. That way, you’ll know where to be when it’s go-time.
While it may feel like pregnancy is the perfect time for kicking back (which it is!), you’ll also want to move your body regularly with some light exercise. If you had an exercise routine pre-pregnancy, you should be fine to stick with it, as long as it feels okay and doesn’t put significant strain on your body. Exercise will help your body better adjust to your growing bump and will keep you at a healthy weight increase. It can also help with a smoother birth as well as getting back into shape again in the postnatal period.
No alcohol or smoking
And lastly, steer clear of alcoholic beverages and smoking of any kind. While some women do indulge in drink every once in awhile, any alcohol you drink will reach the placenta through the bloodstream so it’s best to completely abstain. We will say that there are some pretty tasty mocktails out there — find your favorite and enjoy!
Remember, while these 9 months can seem to go on forever, it is a finite period of time — but the effects of a healthy lifestyle will benefit your little one for their entire lives! Feel free to share your thoughts or any other tips for staying healthy throughout pregnancy in the comments below.
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Being pregnant is about growing a new life — but there’s a lot more that comes with it. If you’re expecting, you’ve probably been privy to an abundance of advice. Everywhere you turn (literally), someone is commenting on what you should do, think about, eat, you name it. It’s hard to know which tips to follow and which to ignore. Here, we’ve rounded up what’s really important to stay healthy throughout your pregnancy. Read on to find out what to focus on!