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Helpful Hint:

To avoid heartburn (common to pregnant women due to changing hormone levels) don’t eat for three hours before going to bed.

Did You Know?

Healthy pregnant women get at least 2-1/2 hours of aerobic exercise every week, or 30 minutes of exercise on most, if not all, days. (U. S. Department of Health and Human Services)

Health & Safety: Healthy Moms

As a mom-to-be, you dream of giving your baby “the best of everything.” You can begin doing that before your baby even arrives by taking good care of yourself. By adopting a healthy lifestyle, you give your unborn baby the best environment in which to grow. Learn more about how healthy eating, exercise, and other choices you make can help you be a healthy mom with a healthy baby.

 

Nutrition

You may have heard the saying, “You are what you eat.” When it comes to pregnancy, you and your baby are what you eat. While it is not true that you need to “eat for two” during your pregnancy, you are providing nutrients for a developing human embryo… a tiny fetus… your baby. Here are some tips for healthy eating:

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  • The first three months of pregnancy (also called the "first trimester") is a very crucial time for making positive changes in your eating. The need for nutrients, protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals increase from 0% to 150%.
  • Folic acid is extremely important during pregnancy.  For more information about the role of folic acid in the diet during pregnancy, click here and here.
  • The quality of food that you eat is far more important than the quantity.
  • Junk foods containing empty calories, such as candy, cakes, sodas, and chips, should be eliminated or limited.
  • Quality, nutrient-filled foods such as fruits, vegetables, meats, beans, eggs, dairy foods, and whole grains are important to a healthy diet. 
  • It is recommended that you drink eight or more glasses of water per day for a total of 64 fluid ounces. If you are drinking bottled water, that equals four 16 ounce bottles daily.
  • Talk to you doctor or healthcare provider about what you should be eating.
  • For more information about which nutrients should be increased during pregnancy, click here.
  • Eat the best food you can afford, or get help obtaining food during your pregnancy. Click here if you need information about financial assistance to get food for yourself.

 

Exercise

Exercise helps you mentally and physically. There is no time in life when you can afford to be inactive, including during pregnancy. However, there are several things that you should keep in mind as a mom-to-be:

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  • You should not start a new exercise program without the approval of your doctor or other healthcare provider. These professionals will consider your fitness level and pregnancy risk factors to recommend activities that are well suited for you and a healthy pregnancy.
  • Make sure your trainer, fitness center personnel, and/or exercise instructor know you are pregnant.
  • The following exercises are commonly approved for pregnancy: Kegel exercise, swimming, walking, bicycling, stair climbing machines, yoga, and dance. Those who have already been engaged in jogging, running, or aerobic program may be approved to continue, although modifications to the intensity and duration of the training may be needed, especially later in the pregnancy. Click here for more recommended exercises for pregnancy.
  • Exercise and other forms of physical activity provide numerous benefits. They can help improve your appearance and posture. They can strengthen your muscles, which is important for delivery and recovery. Plus, it can prednisone help you sleep better and give you more energy.
  • You should never sit in a hot tub or Jacuzzi while you are pregnant.
  • If you experience pain, vaginal bleeding, dizziness or faintness, shortness of breath, nausea, or contractions during exercise, consult your doctor or healthcare provider right away.

 

More Tips

Having a healthy lifestyle goes beyond eating right and being active. Here are some additional tips to keep you and your unborn baby safe and healthy.

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  • Make sure you get proper medical care throughout your pregnancy. A family physician, an obstetric physician (OBG), or a maternal healthcare provider can monitor the progress of your pregnancy, care for the health of you and your baby, and provide you with valuable information. For more information about the importance of medical care, click here. If you are concerned with the cost of health care, click here.
  • Do not be alarmed by normal pregnancy weight gain. If you were a healthy weight beforehand, you can expect to gain approximately 25-35 pounds over the course of your pregnancy. This is normal and healthy. You will lose most of this weight at the time of delivery and in prednisone the few months after the pregnancy.
  • Cut back on your work schedule, if possible.
  • Get adequate rest.
  • Get plenty of fresh air, and stay away from smoky areas.
  • Stop using alcohol, tobacco products, and drugs. Click here for more information about why and how.
  • If you live in an unsafe environment or are the victim of domestic violence, seek help. Click here for more information.