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“Eat eat eat!! You need to eat for two now”, “Sleep sleep sleep! You need to keep resting now”. These are the most common advices given to a pregnant lady. But do they actually work?? No.
No two bodies are the same and no two women feel the same symptoms while being pregnant. Some feel hungry all day while some never feel hungry at all. Some feel hungry but feel pukish all day while some relish all kinds of food without any trouble. What is important is to eat right maintaining a balanced diet containing all important nutrients for the mother and the baby.
Another important aspect for a healthy and happy pregnancy is Exercise. Now that doesn’t mean you need to hit the gym or workout. What I mean is that you need to stay active the entire pregnancy.
Regular exercise during pregnancy improves posture and decreases discomfort such as back aches and fatigue. It also relieves stress and builds the stamina needed for labor and delivery.
Important Pregnancy Exercises:
· Swimming (the best of all)
· Brisk walking
· Low impact aerobics
· Yoga for flexibility
Walking is the best exercise for pregnant women. It keeps muscles toned, keeps you active and helps control blood sugar levels reducing the risk of gestational diabetes.
A pregnant body releases a hormone that stretches the ligaments of the bones, so it is important that we do not stress on the bones and concentrate more on muscles. Also, with increasing weight each month, it is important to take care of the risk of injury or fall since the centre of gravity of body changes with weight.
In the last trimester, it is important to concentrate on the lower abdominal muscles. Squats is the best exercise to get the muscles ready for labor and believe me it works wonders.
Benefits of Pregnancy Exercise :
· It builds the strength to face labor and delivery.
· It tones the muscles.
· It prevents weight gain.
· It keeps the mind and body active.
· It aids in sooner postpartum recovery.
Some exercises should be avoided during pregnancy such as:
· Holding your breath during any activity
· Complicated yoga
· Activities where falling is likely (such as skiing and horseback riding)
· Contact sports such as softball, football, basketball, and volleyball
· Any exercise that may cause even mild abdominal trauma such as activities that cause rapid changes in direction
· Activities that require extensive jumping, hopping, skipping, bouncing, or running
· Deep knee bends, full sit-ups, double leg raises, and straight-leg toe touches
· Waist-twisting movements while standing
· Heavy exercise spurts followed by long periods of no activity
· Exercise in hot, humid weather
However, one should always consult an expert for what exercises they can do and what not.
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