Thursday, January 21, 2010

Paying Attention to Your Body Helps with Healthy Pregnancy

Last weekend, I had some maternity photos taken, which we're planning on using in the baby's nursery and in her baby book. Our friend, Shawn, is a talented photo journalist, who worked for the local news station here in Indianapolis and now he's teaching videography to local high school students. We were his first maternity photo shoot and it was very fun! This first photo was taken at the Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) at their famous "Love" statue. It was 39 degrees outside, but we tried to take some outdoors photos so you could see my belly.

Our due date is in the middle of March so I'm almost at 33 weeks now, the home stretch! I'm happy to report that pregnancy has treated me very well. If you follow my blog you know that I'm still cooking nutritious foods and indulging some cravings from time to time. At 27 wks pregnant I blogged about the lifestyle changes I made years before to prep my body for pregnancy. Since then, I was cleared of anemia or gestational diabetes from the routine standard tests. A few weeks ago I went to the chiropractor for a routine adjustment and that cleared the hip soreness I had developed from sleeping only my sides. Pregnant women are encouraged to sleep on her side to avoid cutting off circulation and blood flow in the aorta from the weight of the baby. I typically go every 4 weeks for an adjustment, but now that I'm in my 3rd trimester, going every 3 weeks seems to be the right amount.

I passionately believe that by living a healthy lifestyle, I learned to pay close attention to my body's reactions, which have helped me manage my pregnancy changes and maintain overall good health. Pregnancy has been a pleasure and joy. I feel my body pull back at this stage when I'm walking so I have learned to slow down a bit. When I'm tired, I take a nap or go to bed early. Sleeping 8-9 hours is healthy for everyone, not just pregnant women. Eating small meals has helped me because it helps me avoid pregnancy-induced heartburn and keep my energy steady.

Think about this....the last time you ate a sugary food, like a donut or store-bought cookie, what happened after you ate it? What do you feel? I notice that I get really shaky and jittery. Sometimes, I give in to a treat. Yesterday, I was craving a Starbucks scone. I had the jitters from the sugar! But, pregnancy cravings can be VERY powerful!

What I have ultimately learned through pregnancy is that listening to the subtle reactions in my body is the most powerful tool you can use to guide you through a balanced healthy lifestyle.

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