The pregnancy is a special time in the life of every woman. The emotion, the anticipation and the deep love that begins to grow to the same measure that the baby develops are all incredible experiences.
Pregnancy is one of the most important opportunities you will have to positively impact your child’s health for the rest of his or her life. Take advantage of this unique opportunity to nurture and take care of both you and the baby.
1. Include essential fatty acids in your daily diet
Let’s start this list with an easy one. The fats are vital, are used to produce hormones, help in the development of the nervous system and brain of the baby and to reduce the risk of complications of pregnancy and postpartum depression.
Foods that are rich in EFA (essential fatty acids) are fish, nuts and seeds. To go over insurance it would also be advisable to add an EFA supplement such as cod liver oil in Chinese medicine to the diet.
2. Drink lots of fluids
Optimize your fluid intake including nutrient-rich liquids as well as water. The chances of reducing the risk of developing preeclampsia (a dangerous complication of pregnancy) and premature delivery go from focusing on producing adequate blood volume.
Something you’ll easily get by including lots of fluids in your diet. The two important points are: A diet rich in protein and drinking many nutrient-containing liquids. So, instead of just drinking large amounts of water – which dilutes the volume of blood – you can drink homemade juices, shakes or infusions plus water during pregnancy.
3. Taking a prenatal multivitamin before and during pregnancy
You’ve heard this before but it’s worth repeating because of how important it is. Taking a prenatal vitamin daily is an easy way to ensure that you are getting all the nutrients important and necessary for the many different and miraculous stages of pregnancy.
If you are getting ready for pregnancy, start taking prenatal vitamins in advance to make sure you have adequate levels of b12 and folic acid during the fertilization stage and the critical cellular division of early pregnancy. This is the time in pregnancy when folic acid deficiencies can cause significant developmental problems for the baby like spina bifida.
4. Vitamin D is important in a healthy pregnancy
The vitamin D has been a hot topic in the health world for years. But the fact that more people are deficient in vitamin D than those with adequate levels has not changed so far.
The vitamin D is important during pregnancy because it helps regulate the absorption of calcium and phosphate present in the body. Healthy levels of these nutrients are necessary for the formation of healthy bone in your baby.
Research shows that supplementing with vitamin D3 during pregnancy will help develop healthy bone mass for children later in life. Low vitamin D levels have also been linked to an increased risk of preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and preterm delivery. The inclusion of cod liver oil supplement will provide the necessary vitamin D.
5. Get ready for the puerperium
When you are pregnant many friends and family members ask about your birth plans. Where, with whom, would you choose medication? Etc..
While all are pending birth, it seems justified that so much attention and preparation for the birth is given, but the rare thing is that the postpartum period, little or no attention or preparation receives. The postpartum period, or fourth trimester as some call it, is a special and delicate period that deserves attention and planning.
You would think giving birth would be the end of all the hard work that your body has to go through, but really the work is not yet finished. During the first two months after childbirth the body transitions that allowed growth and development, as well as the baby’s nutrition, are disappearing to become a non-pregnant woman again.
Your hormones are changing, your uterus is contracting, your breasts are producing milk, your skin is being repaired and the blood volume is changing dramatically. You are returning to normal after birth.
6. Studying and preparing for breastfeeding
If you have done some research online or have read a book on breastfeeding, surely at least you have learned two things: It is difficult to breastfeed and not all women can do it. It is a very sad thing.
If I were to choose the main facts about breastfeeding would be:
It is something that involves effort, but it is worth the effort.
Breastfeed frequently the first month to establish milk production.
Knowing the size of a newborn’s stomach so you have an idea of how much milk you really need. It is much less than you think.
It’s worth it (yes, I said it again), do not give up, although it hurts at first.
It will get better.
It may be helpful to plan the help of a breastfeeding specialist who visits you the first few days after giving birth to help you with any questions you may have. Many hospitals have such staff or may suggest a midwife. Do you think that something so natural and necessary for survival would be easy to do? It is a learning process.
Even the monkeys have to learn from each other how to breastfeed.
I would also suggest having a friend who has breastfed to talk. Having someone to call those first two days after birth is quite helpful. Especially when milk spurts and hormonally / emotionally you are a mess.
7. Find a Trusted Doctor
When you realize that you are pregnant it is very exciting, but soon you will have the task of choosing a doctor. Will you use a gynecologist or a midwife? Will you give birth at home or in the hospital? These are one of the most important decisions you will make regarding your pregnancy and childbirth.
In some countries like Spain, childbirth must be done in hospital, by law, and you can not choose anything, you have to take care of what you have. Take time to research your options and bring up a list of questions for the first meeting with your potential candidates.
Not all doctors are the same and midwives are not all the same. Your birth-related beliefs will have an impact on the type of birth you end up having. Also, your beliefs about nutrition will have an impact on the health of your pregnancy.
Choose someone who builds trust, has good manners, but also make sure they represent support and believe in the type of delivery you want. If you chose a doctor who says ‘Yes’ to all the elements that are important to you, but you are beginning to see glimpses in your attitudes that you do not like, do not be afraid to change professionals.
You are hiring a very important service, so take the time to find a person you trust. You’re going to spend a lot of time with her and your pregnancy and delivery are at stake.
8. Drink shakes to enjoy a healthy pregnancy
This one is easy and fun. When you are pregnant you will have a fierce appetite, however, sometimes it will be difficult to retain food, or certain foods will be unpleasant. The shakes for pregnancy are an easy way to get nutrients in the diet.
You can add vegetables, yogurt, protein, etc. To your smoothies, will help you to satisfy the daily nutritional quota. Some pregnancy diets include large amounts of protein, calcium and vegetables. You’ll find that smoothies or pregnancy smoothies are an easy way to get nutrients and satiate your appetite.
9. Eat lots of protein
I mentioned the importance of protein in the pregnancy diet. The proteins are necessary to obtain the amino acids that are the building blocks of the body ‘s cells. During pregnancy, your baby is developing at such a rapid pace that adequate levels of daily protein are essential and necessary.
The recommended grams of protein per day will vary depending on your weight, but a minimum of 70 – 90 grams is the normal range. Some diets recommend eating even more. When you start trying to eat more protein you will find it difficult at first.
Before pregnancy, the typical woman eats about 45-50 grams of protein per day. Learning what foods are rich in protein will make it much easier to plan meals and snacks throughout the day. Be sure to include a wide range of protein foods in your diet. Some ideas are: Meats, Greek yogurt, nuts, seeds, fish, beans, eggs, cheese, whole grain bread and spirulina.
Your body can force you to rest for being totally exhausted, attentive to the signs and take the time to rest. You may have to adjust the pace of life to which you are accustomed to moving now that you are pregnant. This is also a good time for massages and performs more types of exercises such as walking, swimming or relaxing yoga for pregnant women. Pregnancy is a sacred moment in life. Take the time to enjoy and appreciate the miracle that is happening.