Is having a baby on your new year’s resolution lists? If you’re planning on getting pregnant, like many couples this year, getting healthy should be right on the top of your list too. Poor health before the baby can lead to pregnancy complications like trouble conceiving, poor intrauterine growth or carrying the extra baby weight too long leading to obesity. Use the following tips to get healthy in the New Year and have the best pregnancy you can.
Way to Increase Personal Health
Eat Omega 3 Fatty Acids BEFORE Pregnancy
There is no doubt that adding omega-3 fatty acids to your pregnancy regimen is fully supported by doctors. Your pre-natal vitamin does not usually include DHA and EPA, the two forms of omega-3 fatty acids needed by the body, and an additional supplement is suggested. Why is adding omega-3 fatty acid so important? This fat works in the brain, nervous system and in the heart, protecting these organs and systems and making them “run” properly.
Supplementing your diet during pregnancy with omega-3 fatty acids encourages brain growth in the fetus is one reason to ingest this healthy fat. Another reason during pregnancy omega-3 fatty acids are transferred to the fetus from the mother’s supply. If the mother is deficient in the beginning, she will suffer while the baby takes the lead in omega-3 fatty acid supply. There’s no reason for anyone to be deficient; before pregnancy boost your servings of cold water fish; salmon, cod and sardines, to 3 days a week, 6 oz per serving. While pregnant to reduce the risk of ingesting too much mercury take a daily omega-3 fatty acid supplement and stick to pregnancy safe fish and shellfish.
Eat Whole Fruit and Leafy Green Veggies
Eating 5-7 servings a day is suggested for everyone, but ladies looking to get pregnant should think twice when turning away from fruits and vegetables. Eating well before you’re pregnant will solidify good habits that can carry you through pregnancy and beyond, to pregnancy weight loss and teaching your child to love healthy foods.
One simple step is to eat the whole fruit rather than eating canned, processed or juiced fruit. Whole fruit will have more of what’s needed; vitamins and minerals, and less of what isn’t; additives, preservatives and extra sugar. Canned or juiced can have added sugar, color boosters or chemicals to elongate shelf-life. Choosing whole fruits immediately adds, antioxidants, vitamins like A, C and E and fiber, nutrients your pre-pregnant body needs. Eating whole fruit and eliminating all the others increases your health and the health of any baby.
If there were one vegetable your body needs in greater amounts its leafy green vegetables, like; spinach, kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, romaine lettuce and herbs. Adding leafy greens to your daily consumption of vegetables adds vitamins such as K, C, and A, minerals like iron and folic acid and compounds that reduce inflammation in the body leading to better heart health. Adding 2-3 servings of leafy green vegetables is another habit that you can carry into pregnancy and be proud of.
Get Moving-You’ll Need The Strength
While it’s not a great idea to start a new extreme exercise routine during pregnancy, it’s certainly appropriate to work out before, during and after pregnancy. Low impact aerobics, cardio and weight training will build the strength you need to get through pregnancy and actually raising a child. 30 minutes 5-6 days a weeks of jogging and running, swimming and weight lifting will not negatively impact your ability to conceive a child. It might actually improve it, giving you the powerful body needed to carry a baby.
Understand Your Ideal Weight
Part of the joys of pregnancy is growing a child, but it can be a stressful time. Understanding your ideal body weight before pregnancy is a necessary evil, though it’s not evil. Your weight is calculated by your height (among other items) and too much or too little weight carries problems. Too much weight adds stress and disease internal organs just as too little weight adds stress and disease to your internal organs.
Pregnancy weight gains comes with an idea that you’re “eating for two” when that really starts in the second trimester and carries on into the third. If you’re overweight your pregnancy weight gain could only be 10-15pounds and if you’re underweight you might need to gain 30-45. Knowing what weight is the healthiest for you will help you create the healthiest weight for the baby.
There are 40 weeks to a pregnancy and each one is filled with growth and development of a new little baby just ready to be loved. Use the time before, during and after to take care of yourself so you can care for your family. It’s not selfish to be a healthy mom or dad, it’s important. Being healthy sets a great example for the kids looking up to you, the super-mom that you are (or will be!).