Normal and healthy pregnancy lasts for 9 months. It is divided into stages or trimesters. Each trimester consists of 3 months during which the various parts of fetus start developing and functioning. First trimester is of great importance because the basic life in the form of embryo and then fetus starts developing. You may not notice any outwardly bodily changes during this period in a pregnant woman. However, inner hormonal changes are working round the clock from the time of conceiving.
The umbilical cord, amniotic sac, major organs like heart, and neural tube which further develops into brain and spinal cord, limb bud etc develops during the first three months of gestation.Staying healthy during first trimester is vital for the nutritional need and health of the baby as well as the mother.
Natural Ways Stay Healthy During First Trimester Of Pregnancy
Following a proper diet, exercising regularly, staying physically active helps the baby to grow healthy. Follow these steps during your first trimester.
- Nutrition: Soon after conception, the body starts to divert nutrition from mother to the growing embryo and the fetus. It means there is extra requirement of calories and nutrients, especially those that are vital for healthy growth of the child. Pregnant woman has to increase her calorie intake and nutrient value of food. She has to eat more protein diet, especially lean protein. Additionally, fruits and vegetables are essential to suffice need of extra vitamins and minerals. Folates, iron, vitamin D and calcium are important for the growth of healthy baby.
- Exercise and physical activity: Routine exercise and staying physically active not only reduces stress but also helps to stay fit. Women should walk for 30 minutes or swim, but she can avoid other strenuous exercise, especially when she has history of miscarriage. Fluctuation in blood pressure and sugar is common during these three months of pregnancy. If she feels dizzy, excessive fatigue during and after exercise, she can slow down or take few minutes rest. However, the best thing to do is to consult health care practitioner before starting the exercise program.
- Morning sickness is common problem among many women during the first trimester. Nausea is usually worse in morning. Some women also suffer from vomiting. Morning sickness should not be a concern, unless vomiting occurs for more than 4 times in a day. Often nausea and vomiting occur during morning due to low blood sugar as a result of empty stomach. To avoid this discomfort, eat small 5 to 6 meals in a day instead of 3 meals. Suck ice cube for few minutes to relieve nausea.
- Sleep is essential for the pregnant woman. Some woman feel exhausted easily, to prevent it, sleeping for eight hours at night and a nap in the afternoon is beneficial. If fatigue and tiredness is due to anemia, than she has to eat foods that are rich in iron and folates. Green leafy vegetables, spinach, dried beans, eggs, brown rice, broccoli, kale etc are rich source of iron.
- Pregnant woman has to avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.