Having A Healthy Pregnancy
Once women decide that they want to parent, many want to know what to do to make sure that the pregnancy will be healthy.
Can I work out?
What about prenatal vitamins?
What am I allowed to eat? What should I stop eating?
Will having sex hurt the baby?
These are all great questions and are important to discuss with your doctor. Each woman experiences pregnancy differently and has different health concerns that need to be addressed individually. While you are finding a doctor, here are some general tips that can help you get started on the right foot:
Start taking prenatal vitamins daily (with food). You can find these at your local pharmacy or grocery store. Look for vitamins specifically labeled “prenatal.” Those vitamins should contain iron and folic acid which are important to a healthy pregnancy.
Limit caffeine. One way to get energy without the use of caffeine is by eating fruit which contains natural sugars.
Exercising regularly helps “control your weight, improve circulation, boost your mood, and help you sleep better” (parents.com). Activity does not have to stop when you become pregnant, but sometimes it will need to be modified. Listen to your body! If it hurts, you should stop or make adjustments. Low-impact forms of exercise such as walking, pilates or yoga are great, particularly as you get further along in your pregnancy. You can also run, bike, or dance as your body allows.
Make sure you stay hydrated! Water is a great friend of a pregnant woman. Buy yourself a nice water bottle and carry it with you wherever you go. Yes, you will have to go to the bathroom more frequently, but that is far preferred over dehydration.
Avoid alcohol, smoking and illegal drugs.
Healthy snacking throughout the day, and eating smaller, more frequent meals can help address feelings of nausea. Try putting a packet of crackers next to your bed and eat a few before you get up in the morning. Letting your body go too long without food can increase nausea.
Sex during pregnancy is safe, unless otherwise advised, but might need to be modified as your pregnancy increases for your comfort.