Post # 1
During my last pregnancy (5 years ago) I wasn’t very healthy. I was pretty overweight, ate nothing but fast food and drank soda the whole time. I stayed away from caffeine sushi and alcohol of course but I was just generally unhealthy. I did take prenatals but that’s no big deal at all.
When it came delivery time, I got a few shots of pain meds until the anesthesiologist (spelling??) was available. Eventually he came in and hooked me up with an epidural. They kept it IV form in case I needed another and good thing they did because I needed another dose of the epidural.
It was about 14 hours of labor total about 6 hours pushing before she made her way into the world. I didn’t breast feed when she was born and was taking quite a bit of percocet since the hospital sent me home with countless infections and stitches that came apart before I healed.
So now that I’m TTCing and am older and understand the importance of a healthy pregnancy I’m here to get opinions and advice about ways to have a healthier pregnancy and healthier baby. Birthing plans possibly as well.
I’m not much of a healthy eater but would like to be, so any tips on that would be nice as well. And as far as exercising goes, I’m not big on that either but I have been in the last few weeks getting more active, going on walks etc. When it comes to exercising, it’s alright to pick up exercise when you’re pregnant right? I want to get more and more active as time goes on and we may already be PG (I test in 2 days) so I’m hesitant to push any further than what I’m used to until I know if it’s OK to.
So, what do you do to ensure a healthy pregnancy? How do you exercise? How do you eat? What’s your birthing plan?
Post # 3
Kudos to you for aiming to be healthier this time around!! Only good can come of it 🙂
I think I am having a tremendously healthy pregnancy — I have felt great the entire time (20.5 weeks now) and I think a good part of that is because of how I have been taking care of myself. So, here’s what I’ve been doing:
Food: eating healthy isn’t really that hard if you know what to do! It definitely helps if you’re a decent cook to start with. DH and I eat a lot of chicken breasts, lean pork chops, fish (frozen, bought at Costco), and the turkey version of everything from ground meat to bacon to kielbasa. I find subsituting these meats into regular recipes is easier than learning a whole new style of cooking — so I make things like spaghetti with 99% lean turkey breast and whole wheat noodles, and it’s soooo healthy but didn’t require me to learn any crazy new skills. I do most of my cooking just in a pan in the kitchen or on the George Forman grill and it’s easy! Lots of salad, too, and simple whole grain side dishes like quinoa and wheat pasta. Yummy!
The main thing I’ve found that’s tricky is that I get these intense cravings for sweets and chocolate, that I didn’t have before pregnancy. So, I keep nonfat chocolate milk and a box of Cocoa Krispies cereal in the house. These are great because they let me deal with the chocolate craving without eating something grossly unhealthy and full of fat and calories — the worst they’ve got is some sugar, which my body is fully equipped to handle.
Exercise: Definitely get yourself into gear now! The idea is to not take on anything too new or strenuous when you get pregnant — you want to stick with the things you did before. But if you can get in a habit of walking/hiking/whatever other activities you enjoy, then you’re fine. I was always a runner, and am actually still running. I’ve started to slow down for sure, but I’m still plugging away and feeling great doing it! The uterus bouncing on my bladder is pretty irritating though, haha.
Birth plan: Natural until I can’t anymore! Seriously, my plan is to cope for as long as I can on my own, and if that takes me all the way to transition, then dammit I’m in for the long haul. If I really can’t do it for whatever reason, I’ll take the drugs and won’t beat myself up over it. I think that’s a realistic plan that will work well for me 🙂
Post # 4
I second everything @iarebridezilla: said. I can add that change is very hard, try picking 1-3 changes and giving yourself a month to make them before adding new changes. Most people have an easier time approaching a lifestyle change in this manner.
An example of 3 months of changes:
1: Walk 1 mile 3-4 x/week
2: Bring lunch from home
3: Have 1 serving of veggies at lunch and dinner
1: Walk 2 miles 3-4x/week or walk 1 mile 5-6x/week
2: Switch from white rice, bread, noodles to whole grain or mix 1/2 white and 1/2 whole grain
3: Include one peice of fruit at breakfast
1: Run 1 mile 3-4 x/week or start exercise program (i.e. exercise class or DVD-moderate intesity about 30 minutes long) in addition to walking 1-2 miles 3-4x/week
2: Change afternoon or evening snack to 1 cup yogurt with a few nuts
3: Eat 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day
Finally, Congratulations on deciding to get healthy!
Post # 5
I am finding out that diet is very important to a healthy pregnancy. I am following the “Brewers Diet” which mainly focuses on getting alot of protein (80 – 100 grams a day). Google it for more info.
Post # 6
I would say cut out soda and a lot of sweet things. They were my downfall earlier on in my pregnancy but saw the error of my ways about twenty weeks and felt SO much better! If you HAVE to have something sweet, make sure it’s actually sugar NOT something with sweeteners as there is evidence that they have negative effects on the foetus. KEEP MOVING. I just did walking and swimming (I walked to and from work every day, probably about 5kms a day in total and went hill walking on weekends, swimming for an hour 3/4 times a week) which I found great. Especially as bubs was in breech at 32 weeks, I went swimming every day and just did front crawl for a week, by the end of the week she had turned around and I’m convinced that it helped.
Eat lots of iron rich food. I ended up having to go on supplements and seriously..being constipated and pregnant sucks so avoid that if you can. My SO was great and supportive and made me nutritious and healthy meals towards the end and afterwards to help with BF.
Saying all that I still had a difficult birth but I think that was due to me being mentally unprepared for the pain and it all being very sudden.
Post # 7
@kris325: That is so great that you want to take better care of yourself. I took Bradley Method classes, and they were all about nutrition. I feel like that is the most important thing in pregnancy. But what? 80-100 grams of protein a day. Honestly, focusing on this- I don’t have a lot of room for crappy food after eating that much protein! It is the building block of baby and your uterus. Then come the leafy greens. If you really aren’t into them, try getting a really good blender and making a fruit, veggie, and yogurt smoothie. I think probiotic dairy is important- and dairy in general because of the vit. D, calcium, protein, and potassium. Iron and folic acid from food is also important, so is vit. C and A and salt! Whole grains are also good. I think walking is a great pregnancy exercise.
Honestly, I think eating local/ hormone/ pesticide free and organic is really important. DH and I don’t have a large income, but getting the best quality food possible is a priority.
My philosphy is to make better choices- for instance if I want chocolate or ice cream I will have local pasture chocolate milk (it has omega 3s and CLA) so at least I am getting something a little better. The idea is “make every bite count.” If you are hooked on soda and want a sweet drink? Try coconut water. If you have to have carbonation? Try Izzy or another sparkling juice- still a better choice than soda. If you really need a soda, try a Reed’s ginger ale! See what I mean? Also, avoid eating out of cans. The hormone exposure from BPA just isn’t good. Want a sweet but healthy treat? Frozen fruit or try a cashew cookie larabar. They are so good!
Post # 8
The nurse midwife I work with believes in treating pregnancy almost like training for a marathon: good nutition, stretching/yoga, and walking to make sure you have the stamina for a long labor. You need fluids, lean proteins (fish is great, but don’t eat too much of the big ocean fish), and plenty of fruits and veggies, the brighter colors the better because they contain more vitamins. If you are not into fresh fruits, at least have a half glass of juice because vitamin C will help you absorb more iron from your food.
If you like fizzy drinks, maybe add a bit of pomegrante or grapefruit juice to mineral water? dark sodas will cause your body to leach calcium from your bones, and you definitely don’t want that during pregnancy.