Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy and Labour for Your Growing Family #wellbeingwednesday
My practice is booming with pregnant ladies, and everywhere I go I see pregnant bellies. For, today’s Wellbeing Wednesday tip I am sharing with you some healthy tips for all you pregnant mamas, new mamas, or want-to-be mamas, for a healthy pregnancy and labour.
1. Eat your Fruits and Veggies: A pregnant women only needs 300 calories more per day, so not much, but they should come from nutrient dense foods. Fruits and Vegetables are high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and these phytonutrients will help keep mom-to-be and baby healthy.
2. Have some protein with each meal: Protein is essential for keeping a pregnant woman’s blood sugar levels, but is also the building blocks to healthy cells and blood for the fetus. Aim to eat a “palm sized” piece of clean protein with each meal. This can be lean animal meats, eggs, legumes, beans, organic dairy, nuts or seeds.
3. Increase your intake of Omega 3’s: This essential fatty acid is so important to the developing brain and heart of a fetus. The human body cannot make omega-3s, so we need to get it from our diet. You can either eat fish such as; salmon, mackerel, anchovies, sardines or herring, or include walnuts, eggs and flaxseeds for vegetarian friendly options. A recommendation is to take an omega 3 supplement, to ensure adequate amounts.
4. Get a good daily dose of Calcium: This mineral is essential for healthy teeth and bones and a pregnant woman needs double. Healthy sources come from organic dairy products, dark green vegetables, almonds, black strap molasses, tahini, chia seeds, tofu and seaweeds.
5. Think Sleep: Just when you think you’ve gotten enough sleep, sleep more! Making a baby is exhausting. Most women are pretty run down in the first trimester and then again as the due date approaches. Nourish your body and enjoy the rest, once the baby comes you’ll be thinking about it all the time!
6. Consider a Doula: In my experience from both being a birth doula and being on the receiving end, 3 times, it is the best investment you can make. Research shows having a doula; lowers C-section rates, reduces epidural requests, increases breast feeding initiation, and overall increases the mother’s birth experience, reduces postpartum and boosts her confidence into motherhood.
I hope these tips are helpful for you and your growing family.
RACHEL SCHWARTZMAN is a naturopathic doctor in the St. Clair West neighbourhood. She is the co-owner of West End Naturopathic Doulas, a naturopathic collective that supports pregnant women and partners with the birth of their babies. Westenddoulas.com