By Rebecca Maxwell
Pregnancy is a unique time in a woman’s life. Having another human being growing inside you can be both a delight but also bring its own challenges. Moms-to-be go through many different changes, especially when it comes to their physical bodies. Women who are pregnant experience weight gain, odd food cravings at all times of the day, hormonal changes, frequent bathroom breaks, the swelling of feet and ankles, and much more. Being pregnant can feel like a blessing as well as a curse.
It might be tempting to become careless when it comes to diet and exercise when pregnant. After all, your body is going through rapid changes and you are now eating for two (or more!). However, pregnancy is a time when diet and exercise could not be more critical. Exercise is vital for recovery and weight loss after birth and has many other benefits. Taking control of your diet during pregnancy is essential for giving your baby the right nutrients for healthy growth.
Implementing suitable exercises and diet plans can enhance you and your baby during pregnancy. Here are some ideas for both to get you started on the right path:
For pregnant women, exercise holds many benefits. It helps you feel better and gives you more energy to make it through the day. Exercising goes a long way in preparing your body for birth and aids in maintaining your fitness level. Exercise also helps your body recover faster after the birth. Some promising studies even show that exercise can help reduce the risk of complications. Some exercises, like yoga and Pilates, help to reduce stress, increase flexibility, and reduce pain, all benefits for pregnant women.
The key to exercising during pregnancy is finding the right ones to do. Many women can continue doing the same exercises they enjoyed before becoming pregnant, but it is important to get recommendations from a health care provider. Excellent cardio exercises for pregnant women include walking, swimming, dancing, and low-impact aerobics. Weight training is also important in order to strengthen your muscles and build up stamina. A physician might also recommend what is called Kegel exercises in order to strengthen pelvic muscles and reduce incontinence.
During pregnancy, you will probably have to make a few changes to your diet, even if you are already a healthy eater. Pregnant women need more of certain kinds of nutrients like protein, fiber, iron, calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and folic acid. In order to make sure you are getting enough of the nutrients you and your baby need, it is strongly recommended to take prenatal supplements. Pregnancy does not have to lead to excessive weight gain, however. Soon-to-be moms should be consuming more calories a day than they did more becoming pregnant but only about 300 more in the second trimester and 450 more in the third trimester.
In the end, the right diet and exercise will only help you during pregnancy. Be sure to talk to your doctor about what will work for you and your baby.