Whether planning her first pregnancy or her fourteenth, every woman should address a few preconception needs in order to achieve the healthiest pregnancy possible.
If getting quality exercise is not near the top of your preconception needs, then perhaps it would be a good idea to reevaluate the role of exercise in fertility, pregnancy and healthy life style in general.
Exercise helps the body regulate healthy hormone processes and fat stores. Both of these issues add greatly to a woman’s ability to conceive in the first place. Many a woman has found her path to motherhood only after exercise and weight loss helped regulate her menstrual and ovulation cycles.
In addition to increasing fertility, exercise helps prepare mom’s body for the very physical events which are gestation, labor and birth. When the muscles supporting pregnancy and labor are strong both experiences are more comfortable making them more enjoyable.
Eating for two is not just an excuse for consistently laying claim to the last brownie. Eating for two really means that everything mom eats, baby eats too. Many a parent will deny their young children sugary, fatty foods and instead encourage the eating of veggies, fruits and whole grain choices, while they themselves are scarfing cookies and ice-cream sundaes post bedtime.
If this is a habit, stop and envision your newborn chowing down on a generous slice of cake. Wouldn’t you rather feed your baby vitamin rich foods such as fruits and vegetables? Starting those habits now will make the changes stick during pregnancy.
Most women take a supplemental prenatal vitamin for pregnancy as well as for the duration of the post partum recovery and nursing periods. How many moms planning to get pregnant begin taking a vitamin as part of their preconception preparation?
The average pregnancy is well into its 6th week before mom is certain baby is even on the way. Many vital processes and systems are developed during this critical early time. Making an appropriate vitamin supplement will help safeguard baby’s development from day one.
The best prenatal vitamins are full of critical nutrients such as folic acid, which is known to help prevent certain birth defects, and they are also balanced for maximum absorption. Taking a vitamin which contains insoluble nutrients doesn’t help. Conduct a bit of vitamin investigation to be certain that the one you select will do what you want it to do.
A developing baby is susceptible to all sorts of hazards that don’t affect mom’s mature body in the same way. An occasional glass of wine, for example, will not cause mom any brain damage, but it can and sometimes does have that exact effect on a delicate fetus, and no one knows which factors put baby at risk.
Habits that are especially harmful while pregnant include: drinking, smoking, the use of illegal drugs and many prescription medications, and drinking three or more cups of coffee per day.
Ideally mom will stop drinking, smoking, drinking caffeinated beverages and any drug use preconception. If prescription drugs are part of the daily routine it is best to discuss their effects on pregnancy, if any, and modify their use if possible.
These simple preconception changes will see you through a healthy, happy pregnancy.