Pregnancy is always an exciting part of life, but for it to go as smoothly as possible, you need to make sure you stay healthy at all times. This is important not only for your physical and mental well-being but also for that of your baby. Try to eat healthily, stay physically active, and pay attention to your emotional health. You may also need to adopt a new lifestyle, but the more decisions you make, the better off your child will be.
Follow the doctor’s instructions
See a good doctor
Take the time to choose your doctor wisely, because you will develop a close relationship with them until the birth of your baby. Your GP can recommend an obstetrician-gynecologist who will provide more specific care and help you give birth. You can also ask your friends for advice since you don’t have to go to the first doctor that comes to mind. Do not hesitate to consult different doctors before choosing the one that makes you comfortable and inspires you with confidence.
- To help you choose, do not hesitate to ask him questions.
- If you prefer to give birth at home or want a non-traditional birth (for example a water birth), you can cover to a birth attendant or midwife.
Go to a doctor for prenatal care
During your pregnancy, you should go regularly and systematically to an obstetrician-gynecologist, a family doctor, or a certified midwife to ensure your good health and that of your child. Start prenatal care as soon as you are pregnant, when you decide to get pregnant, or if you think you may be pregnant. You can go to a general practitioner first, but they will need to transfer you to an antenatal care specialist as soon as possible. As long as your pregnancy is progressing normally (according to the doctor’s observations), your prenatal appointments should follow the schedule below:
- until the 28th week of pregnancy, see a doctor every 4 weeks
- between the 28th and 36th week, see a doctor every 2 weeks
- from the 36th week of pregnancy, go to a doctor every week (or more often if he recommends it
Get regular physical activity
Although a baby’s weight, morning sickness, and sore muscles often discourage physical activity, you need to stay active during your pregnancy. This is important not only for your well-being but also for that of your baby. The exercises will make childbirth easier, help you lose pregnancy pounds, aid your physical recovery after childbirth, and aid in fetal development. Aim for 30 minutes of low impact exercise per day. It could be swimming, cycling, weight training, yoga, or walking.
- To prevent the risk of injury, avoid all forms of high-impact exercise (such as long-distance running or high-intensity interval training) or contact sports (such as football, rugby, etc.).
- Remember to cool off from time to time with a fan or cold water, as overheating is dangerous for your baby.
- Before changing your exercise routine or starting a new one, always seek the advice of your doctor.
Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep during pregnancy will give your body enough time to develop a baby, which will help you feel better. You should sleep at least 8 hours a night and take a nap in the afternoon. Always go to bed at the same time to regulate your sleep schedules and get a more restful, deeper sleep.
- To relieve the pressure on your back, sleep on your left side. The other positions could block the flow of blood to the main vein.
- During pregnancy, avoid all forms of sleeping pills unless your doctor tells you and recommends them.
Read Also: Can I get pregnant if I have amenorrhea?
Take prenatal supplements
It can be difficult to stick to a daily regimen of tablets, supplements, and vitamins, yet this is the best way to prevent the risk of birth defects. From the start of pregnancy, women should take 600 µg of prenatal vitamins (prescribed as such) which are a combination of folic acid, iron, and other things in high amounts. These substances help a baby’s development and reduce the risk of complications or deformities (such as Spina Bifida or premature birth). Ask your doctor for a suitable supplement, but remember most pregnant women need more of:
- folic acid (folate)
Watch your weight
Although it is normal for women to gain weight during pregnancy, this excess weight can affect your health and that of your baby. The amount of weight you can gain will depend on your initial weight and body mass index. To know how much weight you are gaining, start by calculating your body mass index (you can do this with your doctor who can also tell you a healthy weight) then use this information and your initial mass to help you.
- Underweight women (with a BMI below 18.5) should gain 13-18 kg.
- Women of a healthy weight (with a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9) should gain 11 to 16 kg.
- Overweight women (with a BMI between 25 and 29.9) should gain 6 to 11 kg.
- Obese women (with a BMI over 30) should gain 5-9 kg.
Visit a dentist regularly
Dental health is especially important during pregnancy, as the body produces more estrogen and progesterone, both of which are responsible for high amounts of gingivitis and gum disease. These diseases can cause regular bleeding or swelling and hypersensitivity of the gums. For good oral health during pregnancy, visit the dentist every 3 or 4 months. Between two appointments, also remember to brush your teeth regularly and use dental floss.
- Depending on where you live, you may qualify for free or discounted dental care. Talk to your general practitioner to see if you can benefit from it.
Adapt your diet
Eat enough healthy foods
This is a frequently asked question that how to diet in pregnancy? Healthy eating prevents the risk of serious illnesses for you and your baby. When we hear eating for 2, we often have in mind images of endless foods and foods during the day. In reality, you should only eat around 300 extra calories per fetus per day.
- In other words, you will need to eat 300 extra calories per day if you are having a single baby, 600 more calories per day if you are expecting twins, and 900 extra calories per day if you are expecting triplets. Depending on your pre-pregnancy weight, these numbers may vary slightly, but they will always stay close to 300 calories.
- Your daily calories should come from healthy foods, not junk food.
- During pregnancy, you need to eat more to provide your body and your baby with the vitamins and minerals they need for their development.
- Avoid alcohol and smoking during pregnancy.
Eat fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C
A pregnant woman should eat 70 mg of vitamin C per day, but it is better to choose natural foods rather than tablets and supplements. You should eat 3 to 4 daily servings of fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C.
- Some fruits and vegetables that you can eat include citrus fruits, papayas, strawberries, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts, and red peppers, among others.
Increase your protein intake
Protein is essential at all stages of life, but during pregnancy, you should try to eat 2 to 3 servings per day, as it mainly helps in the production of blood and the growth of your cells and your cells. of your baby.
- Healthy protein sources you can eat are eggs, Greek yogurt, legumes (like beans), tofu, peanut butter, and lean meats.
Fill up on calcium
Pregnant women have a great need for calcium and yet most do not get as much as they should. Although there is normally calcium in prenatal supplements, you should aim to eat an additional 100 mg per day to help your baby’s bone and nerves develop.
- The sources of protein that you can prefer are yogurt, hard cheeses, milk, and spinach.
- You should also get vitamin D because it helps your body to absorb calcium. You will find it in most foods rich in calcium as well as in cereals and bread.
Eat foods rich in folic acid
Although you will find folic acid in prenatal supplements, you should eat foods that contain them for the best results. It is folic acid that allows enzymes to work well and helps blood production in the baby’s body.
- Foods rich in folic acid include kale, Swiss chard, spinach, squash, beans, nuts, and peas. All of these foods contain other nutrients as well and you should try to eat 1 to 2 servings per day.
Choose foods rich in zinc
During pregnancy, you should eat 11 to 13 mg of zinc per day, hence the importance of choosing foods that contain this essential mineral. For example, you can eat beef, pork, poultry (chicken or turkey), cashews, almonds, peanuts, fortified cereals, yogurt, and cheese
Make sure you’re getting enough iron
The body uses iron to make blood cells in your body and your baby’s body. Most prenatal supplements already contain it, but it is best to consume it in its natural form (found in food) rather than as a supplement.
- Foods rich in iron include red meat, spinach, and whole grains fortified with iron (such as certain bread and cereals). You should eat at least 1 serving per day of these foods.
Take a fish oil supplement
Omega-3 fatty acids are a big part of your baby’s brain and eye development. They are especially found in fish such as tuna, sardines, salmon, and anchovies, but to reduce your mercury consumption, it is better to take fish oil supplements rather than fish during pregnancy. You can consume up to 300 mg per day