You and your baby's Health
Good health is essential throughout your pregnancy for both you and your baby. Some say that the calmer you are throughout your pregnancy the calmer your baby is once it's born. So, try to do as much as you can of what you like and don't work too hard! I did a course on Hypnobirthing with my first child and whilst we had a few challenges during labour it did change my outlook on the pregnancy from utter fear to a feeling of calm and almost excited as I went from thinking I couldn't do it (with my bad back / slipped disc) to feeling in control, and with that came calm.
Anything from a walk in the fresh air each day to Yoga, swimming or Pilates can be of great benefit to you and your growing baby. Experts suggest 30 minutes each day will help with circulation, improve muscle strength, Increase your energy levels and reduce that horrible backache. However, always check with your doctor first. If you were active before you fell pregnant then there is no reason why you cannot carry on, just don't start something new and too aerobic as your body won't be prepared for it! For some great exercises click here and for some you can do at home, click here
Try to keep yourself hydrated! I understand towards the end your bladder is squashed by your ever growing bump but try to sip water as often as you can and avoid caffeine! The food that you eat throughout your pregnancy is carried through to your baby and is vital for their foetal development. A healthy diet can reduce morning sickness and fatigue and keep you energised throughout the day. Everyone has their Achilles heel, be it chocolate, crisps or a cream cake and I am not saying don't have one, just don't eat the whole dozen! While the sugar hit may feel great for a few minutes it won't sustain you all day I am afraid. Try to eat plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, Vitamin C, Iron rich foods, the right fats and whole grains. Spinach, liver, egg yolks and fatty fish are also great for your baby's brain development, read more here. With businesses such as Hello Fresh, eating a healthy balanced meal couldn't be easier and with delivery straight to your door you don't even have to go out and hunt for the ingredients!
Foods to avoid!
There are some foods it's advised to steer clear of during your pregnancy. These include raw eggs, unpasteurized milk or cheese. Mouldy cheese such as brie or stilton, cured meats, caffeine, and undercooked meat, seafood or poultry. You can find out more at The Baby Centre. If you have any known allergies then speak to your doctor.
We all have them but some are worse than others. As a mother to be by getting pregnant, you have taken on the huge responsibility to nurture and care for your child for the rest of your life. So the key message is to be RESPONSIBLE for your actions. Drinking, Drugs and alcohol consumption can cause a huge range of problems for your growing baby. Any of these consumed by the mother will enter the babies bloodstream and can cause anything from ectopic pregnancies, premature births, low birth weight, abnormal growth, and miscarriage. If you do feel the need for a drink then one glass of wine or champagne per week is considered to be ok however best to check the guidelines first as these change all the time! People often get told they are eating for two now so this means the flood gates are open! However, experts state you should only eat approximately 300 calories more than you did before falling pregnant. If you monitored what you eat in a day you can then see what you actually need to amend if anything. It's a trap that many people fall into and it's usually a bad diet that creates more fatigue and therefore the vicious circle continues as they grab a sugary snack to give them a quick fix.
Vitamins and medicine
When you are pregnant, it's amazing what you cannot take when you are under the weather! Even a paracetamol or an ibuprofen is not considered a good idea, and if you get a cold you cannot take your usual cough medicine or Lemsip to get you through. The best solution is to stock up on vitamins in the hope you then stay fit and well. I found Zeta West offers a great balanced range of vitamins specifically tailored to each trimester of your baby's growth. For colds try Olbas oil on your pillow and some homeopathic remedies can really help.
I am a size 10 but when I had the twins I was HUGE!!! I cannot say if my lack of stretch marks is down wholly to slathering Bio Oil on every day but I do think keeping yourself moisturised and hydrated each day does help. Also the more you take care of yourself during pregnancy, the better equipped you will be to cope when your little one is born, and if you do manage to keep fit you will bounce back in no time, especially if you mange to breast feed. Best of luck with it all.