Ways to stay healthy during pregnancy: Whether you’re a first-time mum or this is a path you’ve trodden before, you know the main rule of caring for your baby is caring for yourself. For this reason it’s important to stay healthy, whether that be through your diet, or activities and exercise. Here we share 6 ways to stay healthy during pregnancy.
1. Eat healthy food
Both you and your baby need healthy food, so keep sugar and fat to a minimum. Instead, eat plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables, whole grains and calcium-rich foods.
2. Get your vitamins
Folic acid and calcium are your best friends. Foods such as spinach, oranges, broccoli and kidney beans are packed with folic acid, while milk and yogurt are rich in calcium. A daily prenatal multivitamin, however, can help ensure you get the right amount. If you’re unsure about which vitamin to take, ask your doctor.
3. Stay hydrated during pregnancy
A great way to stay healthy during pregnancy is to stay hydrated. Try to aim for eight or more glasses each day. Other than keeping your body hydrated, which of course is a good thing, it’s really important to drink an adequate amount of water during your pregnancy because H2O is what allows all the good stuff, like your prenatal vitamins and your nutrient-rich food, to be transported to your baby. How does it work? Well, water helps your body absorb essential nutrients and then transports vitamins, minerals and hormones to the blood cells. It’s those blood cells that make their way to the placenta, which in turn provides oxygen and nutrients to your baby.
4. Get moving
Unless you’ve been advised not to exercise by your doctor, a spot of daily physical activity is great for most pregnant women. If you are unsure, check with your doctor or midwife to find out how much physical activity would be right for you.
5. Get plenty of sleep
Aim to get around seven to nine hours sleep a night. It’s important for both you and your baby that you are well rested. Also, try to sleep on your left side to improve blood flow to you and bub.
6. Prepare for your delivery
Whether it’s writing a birth plan or investing in a postpartum care kit, it’s important to prepare for your delivery so that it is not a source of anxiety for you. We advise speaking to your midwife about antenatal classes, breastfeeding support and your options for delivery.
Words: Catherine Sullivan is a mum of two, a freelance journalist and the co-founder of Mama Hug.