Posts Tagged ‘ Pregnancy Diet ’

6 Things I Wish I Could Tell My Pregnant Self

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

I’m eight weeks postpartum now, with enough distance from my twin pregnancy to see things a little bit more clearly. If I could, I’d love to be able to communicate with my recently pregnant self and give her a little advice based on what I know now. Here’s what I’d tell her…

You’re absolutely right to make manic lists and do everything on them.
When the babies come home from the hospital, just try to handle even the most basic task and see how hard it’s become. Your epic list-making serves you well here, but there are even a couple more things you’ll want to do. First off, make sure the changing station is fully set up, because it’s the first thing you’ll need when you walk in the door. Second, read all the manuals for the things you’ll want to use in the first three months. Because when the babies are several weeks old, and you want to use the Ergos with the infant inserts, you will tearfully lament how hard it is to figure them out. You will scratch your head while you unfurl folded manuals with comic exaggeration, and you will watch YouTube videos with a layer of emotionality that makes it terribly hard to focus. (You will also watch your husband trying so intently to figure it out, and marvel once again how awesome he is, and how devoted.)

Don’t register every single ache and pain as something bad.
Remember how, before pregnancy, you occasionally had aches and pains? Yes, sometimes you have little ones in pregnancy too—but those don’t all indicate something terrible. Try to differentiate. If you stub your toe and it hurts, there is probably not a problem with the babies. Relax.

A couple of bean sprouts won’t kill you.
I know you’re starving and your bibimbap at the Korean lunch place came with bean sprouts, even though you’d specifically said you couldn’t eat them during pregnancy. But you don’t need to be so intense in your mission to pick out every last one. And similarly, avoid the gorgonzola, sure—but you can probably ease up on the hard cheese that’s been cooked anyway on your babymoon in France, Italy, and Spain. (Also, don’t bother asking the Parisian waiter if the cheese is pasteurized: He’ll look at you like you’re crazy/evil.) You’re right to be cautious and smart about what you put in your mouth in pregnancy, of course, but obsessive behavior isn’t necessary or even useful.

Have more zip-up swaddles on hand.
In general, you have more than enough of everything—but you do need more of these. Because you will come home and feel the weight of the world is on you to try to figure out how to swaddle the real way with a blanket. And you will never figure that out, BTW.

Cosmetically, you’re worried about the wrong things.
You are very bummed out about those stretch marks that popped up in the last couple of weeks, and you’re also spending a lot of time on Instagram searching for #csectionscar images because you think those are the biggest cosmetic issues you will have postpartum. You’re wrong. In fact, you’ll have to figure out how to heal your diastasis recti (a condition not uncommon after twin pregnancy in particular), and a bunch of extra weight you imagined would melt off like magic with a few weeks of breastfeeding. You’re hilariously wrong about what to worry about, so how about… just don’t? There will be plenty of time* to be the proactive sleeve-roller-upper you are, and work on improving the things you want to improve after the babies come—you just don’t know what those things are yet.

*OK, maybe you won’t actually have plenty of time per se, but you can make it happen.

You need a bigger car.
It’s really cute that you think your small hatchback will magically expand, creating the volume you will need to fit the double stroller, two car seats, and your 6-foot-1-inch husband—or even two out of the three of those things. But it will not. Get the SUV and be done with it.

Pregnant? Use our pregnancy checklist to get everything done before baby comes! Shop for cute baby swaddles here. And don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy on Facebook to keep up with the latest in pregnancy-related news.

What do you wish you could go back and tell your pregnant self?

Photo: Courtesy of Alesandra Dubin


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Pregnant? Eat More Fish!

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

pregnant woman eating fishAs a first-time preggo, I was pretty careful (or maybe neurotic is a better word) about what I ate. Case in point: Once, while on a babymoon in Bermuda, I actually left the resort restaurant where my hubby and I were about to order dinner to go back up to our room and fetch my handy list of low-mercury fish (yes, I packed that!) just to make sure the seafood dish I was considering was “okay.” (As it turns out, it wasn’t!)

Lots of mamas-to-be probably share my concerns about fish, and are confused about what falls in the safe-or-not-safe categories when it comes to their pregnancy diet. (So many different kinds of tuna!) But new advice issued earlier today by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency urges pregnant women, as well as those breastfeeding, to actually up their consumption of low-mercury fish. (While not yet finalized, the new recommendations will ultimately replace the current guidelines, issued in 2004.) (more…)

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Is Your Pregnancy Diet Lacking THIS?!

Monday, May 26th, 2014

When it comes to a pregnancy diet, you probably think about eating clean, organic foods, drinking milk, and taking prenatal vitamins and folic acid. You probably don’t think about needing more iodine in your diet, right? Well, it turns out you should!

New research by the American Academy of Pediatrics shows that one-third of pregnant women in the United States have an iodine deficiency, and iodine is needed to produce thyroid hormones—which control your metabolism and play an integral part in your baby’s all-important brain development. One theory for the lack of iodine in women’s diets is that processed foods don’t use iodized salts, and Americans as a whole are eating much more processed food than we once did.

And even though in the U.S. pregnant women often take prenatal vitamins, only 15 to 20 percent take ones that contain any iodine (in the form of potassium iodide), and many of those that do contain iodide don’t contain the 150 mg suggested by the National Academy of Sciences. The recommendation for pregnant women and breastfeeding moms is the same—a daily supplement that includes at least 150 mg of iodine and use of iodized table salt for a combined intake of between 290 and 1100 mg of iodide per day.

You can naturally add iodine into your diet by eating things like seafood or low-fat yogurt. And in the U.S. most table salt is fortified (a practice that started in 1924 to help end iodide deficiencies), so it’s an excellent source for iodine with ¼ teaspoon providing about 47 percent of your necessary daily intake.

So it’s relatively easy to add what you need into your diet to give your baby the best chances of being a brainiac—but like everything else, consult your doctor about your individual needs, especially before taking any supplement!

How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: What
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: What
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: What "Eating for Two" Really Means

Image of pregnant woman eating yogurt courtesy of Shutterstock.

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What One Mom Said to Insult ALL Pregnant Women

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Oh no, she didn’t! Yes, she did! Australian blogger Loni Jane Anthony, who made news for going on an extreme diet that consisted almost exclusively of fruit, has opened her big mouth again, and this time she’s managed to insult pregnant women everywhere! After she displayed what many critics considered to be an eating disorder while pregnant, often called pregorexia, she gave birth to a healthy baby boy, weighing in at 8 pounds, 7 ounces (thank God!). So, of course, outspoken Loni is now saying she is “living proof you don’t have to become a whale while you’re pregnant.” Exqueeze me!

I think I speak for any woman who has ever been pregnant when I say, “How dare you?” When you’re pregnant you are no longer in control of the shape of your body. Yes, it’s smart to watch what you eat when you’re pregnant, and too much overindulgence in those out-of-control pregnancy cravings can be bad news (leading to bigger, heavier babies, which equals a harder labor for you, and possible obesity in your kid’s future). But enough of the fat shaming! It’s bad enough when it comes from the media. I don’t think women should be doing it to each other!

I also don’t think most women want to hear the criticism from Loni, whose radical fruit diet sounds a little nuts. She admitted to eating mostly bananas (up to 20 a day!), drinking fruit smoothies and occasionally pairing it with a salad for dinner. Mom to new son Rowdy, Loni says, “You don’t have to put on heaps of weight and never bounce back—you can stay really healthy.” She gained about 37 pounds while pregnant, and says she lost 22 pounds within days of giving birth. Loni says her son is the picture of health—”feeding like a machine,” “sleeping,” and “happy.” She also says she’s making plenty of breast milk, so that her diet is completely fine.

While I completely believe you can be a healthy vegetarian or vegan with a bun in the oven, I still wouldn’t advise any other mom-to-be to follow Loni’s lead with her extreme dieting. The Mayo Clinic says the diet of a pregnant woman should consist of nutrients like folic acid, calcium, vitamin D, protein, and iron, which can be obtained through the consumption of foods such as spinach, beans, milk, yogurt, salmon, eggs, lentils, and poultry. It is suggested that pregnant women have a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.

Since Loni’s diet is short in protein—which helps with growth and repair of tissues—and several essential vitamins and minerals, including iron, calcium, and zinc, it can lead to the baby taking calcium from her bones and leaving Loni susceptible to osteoporosis later in life.

According to the New York Daily News, Loni says, “I’m consuming more good fats because I’m breastfeeding, but other than that, I’m eating the same.” And she plans to raise son Rowdy with the same diet. “I’m thriving on a plant-based diet, so why wouldn’t (my baby)? If I believe that the way I eat is the best way possible, then why would I let him eat any other way?”

TELL US: Do you think Loni’s diet is healthy for her and her son?

What is your ideal pregnancy weight? Click to find out.

Image of Loni Jane Anthony and son Rowdy via Instagram.

Exercise With Baby: Quads, Hamstrings and Butt
Exercise With Baby: Quads, Hamstrings and Butt
Exercise With Baby: Quads, Hamstrings and Butt

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Is Your Unborn Child Already a Junk Food Junkie?

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

Put down those Doritos and read this! The foods you’re eating during pregnancy and while breast feeding are shaping the way that your unborn child will eat for years to come, according to a new study. That’s right—bad eating habits form in utero.

Researchers at the Monell Chemical Senses Center, a nonprofit research organization in Philadelphia, found that babies’ taste buds are directly linked to what their moms ate while pregnant with them. So if you’re eating a diverse and varied diet, your child will eventually be a less picky eater, who is open to trying new things. Your good habits are being passed down to them, and that will show in how they eat as toddlers and later on as adults.

But your bad habits are being passed down as well. A study conducted at the University of Adelaide in South Australia found that if you are eating sugary or fatty foods, your child will actually have cravings for those foods and form an emotional attachment to them. Moms who ate Froot Loops, Cheetos and Nutella during pregnancy had children that built up a tolerance for those foods, so that they needed more of them to get the same gratification from eating them. That is how researchers believe the US’ obesity epidemic all started (70 percent of Americans are either overweight or obese).

According to the New York Times, “researchers believe that the taste preferences that develop at crucial periods during infancy have lasting effects for life. In fact, changing food preferences beyond toddlerhood appears to be extremely difficult.” So when you tell people you’re “eating for two,” you really are—not the amount of calories for two people, but you are choosing what your baby will be eating for the rest of his or her life. Just think about that the next time you have a craving! Of course it’s fine to indulge every now and again (here are some ideas for doing that the smart way), but know that your eating habits do have long-term effects on your little one, so choose your meals wisely!

Test your Pregnancy Nutrition IQ here.

TELL US: What foods have you cut out while you’re pregnant? What are your healthy indulgences?

Image of pregnant woman eating a salad courtesy of Shutterstock.

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