During pregnancy, good nutrition is essential to ensure the good development of the fetus and safeguard the health of the mother. However, if you are expecting a baby, you don’t just have to focus on nutrition. In fact, in this important phase, pregnant women gain weight more easily and must be good at following an appropriate diet. Playing sports during the nine months of pregnancy is therefore essential, obviously respecting the limits and abilities of every future mother.
In this article, we will introduce you to the two aspects separately and in detail. We will begin by giving you all the information relating to proper nutrition during pregnancy , and then complete the discussion with some suggestions regarding certain sports that, surely, will be for you. We repeat, the goal is twofold: to favor the optimal growth of the fetus and to strengthen the body (and spirit) of the mother.
What to eat during pregnancy
What you will find below are some guidelines on nutrition in pregnancy. That is. these are some simple but effective tips on what is best to eat or drink. Furthermore, to limit any errors, we will also tell you what is best to avoid. Are you ready to start?
- To ensure that you and your baby have all the necessary nutrients and energy, we recommend that you respect the rule of five meals a day. We are talking about breakfast, lunch and dinner, with the addition of two fruit-based snacks.
- Keep yourself constantly hydrated, trying to drink at least 2 liters of water a day.
- Avoid eating raw foods such as eggs, fish or meats. Always remember to wash fruit and vegetables well that you will eat raw.
- Follow a varied and balanced diet, this means that you will include foods from all groups: grains, tubers, vegetables, fruits, milk, meat, eggs, fats, oils and sugars. In the latter case, it is better not to overdo it and prefer alternatives to refined white sugar (honey, brown sugar, stevia, maple syrup or agave juice).
- During pregnancy, pill supplements of certain vitamins and minerals such as folic acid, iron or calcium are often needed.
- Do not consume alcohol, tobacco or drugs. Alcohol consumption causes growth retardation, ocular and joint abnormalities, mental retardation, malformations and miscarriages.
- Reduce or eliminate coffee consumption during pregnancy. Studies show that caffeine crosses the placenta and can alter the baby’s heart rate and breathing.
- Moderate your consumption of salt, remembering that there are processed foods that contain a lot of it, such as canned foods, sausages, sauces, and so on.
What sport to do?
Let’s now see which sports are good to do during pregnancy, without putting the baby at risk. As you will see, we have included disciplines that will be very beneficial to both him and you. Keep in mind that you will always train in moderation, respecting your limits of strength and endurance. If you have never done physical activity, the help of a personal trainer is definitely essential.
- Walking : Certainly it is very useful during pregnancy and does not involve any danger, unless your doctor advises against it, for some reason. The times and speed will depend on your personal physical conditions and above all on your habits. A sedentary lifestyle is absolutely to be avoided.
- Running : this is one of the most recommended sports during pregnancy. To practice this physical activity you will first have to undergo a small medical examination and the specialist will always show you how and at what intensity to do sport, also and above all based on the month of pregnancy in which you are. Take the right precautions and don’t overdo it.
- Gymnastics : this activity is perfect even if you have never practiced it, since it adapts to pregnancy without problems. Postural, stretching or balance exercises will help you to get in harmony with your body, to sweat and burn fat but without too much effort. You will gain strength and mobility.
- Swimming : it is the ideal sport for pregnancy and can be practiced until shortly before giving birth, without particular restrictions. It is also a type of physical activity that improves circulation. Water exercises for pregnant women are perfect for working the whole body and gaining strength, low impact. By training in the pool, in fact, you will strengthen muscles and joints without the danger of trauma related to natural weight gain.
- Yoga : It is a perfect exercise during pregnancy since, like gymnastics, it adapts to any woman without any problems. In this activity, the soft and controlled movements will be performed in parallel with those for breathing, favoring the flexibility and oxygenation of the body.
- Pilates : There is a type of Pilates that involves training with a special ball, perfect for those who are pregnant. The pilates method will help you keep fit by exercising your muscles, facilitating relaxation and will help you prepare your body for childbirth.
As you have seen, nutrition and exercise are the two key elements that will allow you to face pregnancy in the best possible way. Take a cue from these guidelines and, in any case, always ask your specialist for advice before making drastic changes to your lifestyle.