Four Steps To Plan For A Healthy Pregnancy
Like most major undertakings, forethought and planning are essential. So, what better opportunity for you, as prospective parents, to review your lifestyle choices and get you fit and ready for pregnancy. Ideally, take 3-6 months to prepare before actively embarking on your pregnancy, your joint efforts will be worth it.
Food and drink
Have a thorough review of your current eating habits, a fresh wholesome diet is essential to provide the vital nutrients your body needs to work properly. Increasing your fresh vegetable intake and ditching processed food is a good place to start.
Being seriously overweight or underweight may affect your chances of becoming pregnant. Seek help from your GP or a nutritionist for a diet advice. Be alcohol-aware, as excessive alcohol intake can impair the absorption of important minerals and vitamins. Ideally, aim to minimise or cut out alcohol altogether if you are planning to get pregnant.
Smoking also depletes the absorption of vital nutrients necessary for your body to work properly. Cigarettes contain toxic chemicals such as cadmium and lead that can cause damage to the body Seek professional help for kicking the habit.
It is important to respect your body’s natural sleep rhythms. Aim to have a good 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Don’t work too late or watch TV prior to bedtime, both activities are stimulating, and it takes time for the brain to switch off.
Eat your evening meal earlier rather than later and take a relaxing bath or shower before bedtime. Try going to bed approximately the same time each night and keep the bedroom lights low, quiet and free of electronic devices including TV.
Rest and recreation
It is well known that physical and emotional well-being are intrinsically linked. Creating time to relax and unwind can have a positive impact on your wellbeing.
Ensure you have time out in the fresh air if you work indoors all day and take some form of moderate exercise you enjoy at least 3 times per week.
You could share some regular recreation with your partner; this might be cycling, a long walk or how about salsa dancing?
Find some time each day just for you such as meditation, going for a walk, a soak in the bath or reading a good book. Switching off completely by taking that overdue holiday with your partner could be a well-deserved rest.
Most of us lead busy lives and it’s easy to end up on a treadmill of routine and over-work, feeling unfulfilled and exhausted at the end of the day.
Re-think your work-life balance –does work dominate your life? Do you have too many social commitments? Prioritise and make adjustments that free up more quality time for yourself and your partner.
Consider methods you can try to unwind like acupuncture, reflexology, aromatherapy massage, yoga or tai chi.