Preparing for pregnancy is more than just checking your finances and making space in the guest bedroom. If you are planning to get pregnant, you can prepare your body to be the perfect home for your child. A healthy diet carves your body into an ideal womb and trains you to eat the right options throughout your pregnancy.
Lean proteins, fibrous carbohydrates and healthy fats should comprise your diet as you prepare to get pregnant. Just as important, folic acid is a critical need for your baby’s development. Folic acid exists in dark green vegetables, oranges and legumes. The Ohio State University Medical Center recommends 400 milligrams (mg) of folic acid per day when you are preparing to get pregnant. You can get it in vitamin supplements as well, but working it into your diet is a good habit.
Pregnancy is a time for gaining weight–no matter how underweight or overweight you are when you start. The University of Maryland Medical Center notes that overweight pregnancies are at greater risk for problems and complications. Replace your high-calorie sugary habits with fruits and other natural sources. Learn to munch on vegetables and light dips, such as hummus, to get more in your diet. Eating fewer calories can help you lose weight before you get pregnant. The April 2008 issue of “The Telegraph” reported that women who ate a higher calorie, but still healthy diet, tended to conceive boys. If you want to increase your chances, eat healthy sugars, such as fruits. Avoid gaining too much weight though, because even the cutest boy isn’t worth the risk of complications.
When To Get Started
Eat a healthy diet as soon as you start thinking about conception. Even before you begin trying to conceive, start making changes toward better food options. Eat diets full of folic acid, or take folate supplements, as soon as you have intercourse.
You might think it might be worth waiting until pregnancy to start a healthy diet. After all, you may as well live it up until you have to stop for the baby. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to predict pregnancy. You may conceive the first time you try or it may take years. Your baby needs folic acid and a healthy diet from the very beginning. Filling your body with all the nutrients it needs, even before you conceive, will ensure you are ready when the time comes.
Pregnancy is not always a great time for healthy eating. Between the nausea, the cravings, the intense smells and the exhaustion, your diet could take a hit. Teach your body now how to choose good options and to notice how good it feels when you do. This will compel you to eat well before, during and after your pregnancy
- too healthy image by Kimberly Reinick from Fotolia.com