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Enjoying a Healthier Pregnancy

Aug 17, 2007
While sometimes pregnancy is just difficult, it is possible to have a less stressful pregnancy by following healthy practices. Even though you may not completely get rid of some of the inconveniences (like morning sickness), you can feel better about yourself and your situation if you are careful to indulge in practices that help you feel good. Some of these include exercise, diet, and rest.

Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. However, it is important not to strain your body too much when you are pregnant. Consult with your physician before beginning or continuing any exercise regimen. Walking is usually fine, and if you have been jogging before the pregnancy, it is usually okay to continue. But you should ask your doctor first. Additionally, there are special yoga workouts designed for pregnant women. Many of the moves in more conventional yoga are stressful to the fetus and can cause problems. Avoiding strenuous aerobic activity may be recommended if you do not already do aerobic exercises. And swimming is one of the best exercises you can do for yourself while pregnant. But make sure that you find out from your doctor what is allowed in your condition.

Eating well is another important aspect of pregnancy. It is healthy to gain up to about 20 pounds over the course of your pregnancy. However, this does not mean that eating junk food all the time is a good idea, although everyone needs their fix of it every now and again. Healthy foods like fruits and vegetables, whole grains, dairy products, and lean meat and poultry are good ideas. Try to avoid fish, as the mercury content can be dangerous to your developing baby. Ask your doctor or a nutritionist whether some types of fish, on occasion, might be acceptable. Avoiding alcohol is important, as is limiting caffeine. The problems associated with alcohol are well known, but many people don't realize that caffeine can restrict blood flow, making it more difficult for the fetus to receive nutrients from your blood. And be sure to take your prenatal vitamins. This will ensure that your developing baby gets all of the nutrients she or he needs.

Rest is very important during pregnancy. You want to make sure that you get adequate sleep each night. Sometimes this can mean as many as 10 hours. But it is important to give your body and the fetus adequate time to recover from the strains of the day. If something seems too much for you, say no. When you are pregnant, you have other demands on you. You will have a much better pregnancy if you can get rest. If sleeping at night is difficult (as it can be especially in the third trimester), make sure you take some time during the day to lay restfully on the couch with a book or to sit quietly with some other activity that you enjoy.

Taking good care of yourself can contribute to a healthier, happier pregnancy, and one that is a little easier.
About the Author
Learn more about pregnancy, and about other issues that affect women at the women's resource site For A Better Her
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