Pregnancy is an exciting time in any mother and mother-to-be’s life. If you’re at this stage, you’ve likely read some books and asked friends or family who have children what pregnancy was like for them—and they all probably gave you wildly different answers. But one of the most overlooked parts of pregnancy is the stage that begins before the strip turns pink: pre-pregnancy.
Pre-pregnancy should be thought about in the same way as if you were moving into a new home. Once you’ve picked your perfect house, you don’t just move in; you have to prepare for it. You clean it and have all of the groundwork and infrastructure checked. You ensure that it’s a suitable place to live. Then, you begin to move all of your belongings, and that’s when you’re finally moved in.
Well, your womb is the new home and your baby is the new tenant. Before your baby can thrive in its new environment, you have to create a healthy, hospitable place for it to move into. Taking steps towards a healthier life prior to pregnancy increases your chances of getting pregnant and even helps avoid risks of future pregnancy complications. So, from a healthy pre-pregnancy stance, it’s about the maintenance of your body and your baby’s happy little home that will allow you to carry it to term.
Most physicians will recommend that for eager parents-to-be, the set-up stage should begin roughly three months before you start trying to conceive. However, if you know your body and your fertility levels, six to nine months might even work better. Depending on your life and potential lifestyle changes you might need to make, think about how long it takes to form positive habits or health changes, then decide on a suitable timeline from there.
So, how can you get healthy before and during your pregnancy? Continue reading for three big tips.
1. Take Your Vitamins
Vitamins and vegan prenatal vitamins are an excellent way to deliver the most important vitamins to your body. Vitamins come with great benefits of supporting brain function, strengthening your bones, increasing your immunity, and preparing your body for overall optimal pregnancy health. These vitamins oftent come with omega-3s, and taking this DHA will help your baby’s brain, nervous system, and eyes develop properly with a lower chance of something going wrong.
EPA omega-3s have fatty acid for your baby-to-be’s heart and arteries. They can also help build up cell strength so that your body has a good defense system to protect your baby’s health. And, above all else, the omega-3s will support your bones and joints so that as your baby continues to grow inside of you, your body can take on the additional weight without compromising your health.
2. Know Your Medical Status
As you take your vegan prenatal vitamins before you get pregnant, go to the doctor for a check-up to understand the current state of your health. Check your fertility levels, hormones, and any potential health risks that might occur during pregnancy. It might even be helpful to know your family’s pregnancy health history, like if your mother or grandmother had any complications. Knowing how healthy you are prior to getting pregnant will help you prevent or prepare for whatever comes next, and your doctor is the best person to get all of these answers from.
This is not the time to trust your gut or rely on how well you know your body; your body is going to undergo major changes and you should be prepared. While at the doctor, it’s also a good idea to have your partner go through a health check as their genes will make up 50% of your baby’s DNA, and that family health history is just as important. Just because one person is carrying the baby doesn’t mean the other won’t have an influence on the baby’s health.
3. Create a Regular Exercise Routine
Weight plays a role in a healthy pregnancy—being overweight or underweight can be harmful. To avoid pregnancy complications, it’s a good idea to create healthy habits, like incorporating vegan prenatal vitamins into your routine before you get pregnant and beginning regular exercise. If you haven’t started a regular exercise routine yet, don’t go overboard right away. On the opposite end of things, if you’re someone who exercises or trains often, this is a good time to start to taper off and moderate your routine.
Find an activity or a few that you can do once a day for moderate exercise. Yoga, jogging, dancing, any lightweight or low-impact workouts are best. This way, when you become pregnant and are further along in the process, you won’t have to stop what you’re doing; you will already be in a set routine that you can look forward to. As you progress, also ask your doctor about the right body mass index for you, and try to stick to that number to ensure your baby is healthy as can be.
As you prepare for your family-to-be, your body and overall health matter most. Doing these three steps—taking vegan prenatal vitamins, understanding your medical status, and exercising regularly—to help you get healthy before and during pregnancy will get you one step closer to ensuring a full-term, healthy birth.