How Good Heart Health During Pregnancy Benefits Your Children

How Good Heart Health During Pregnancy Benefits Your Children

Staying healthy during pregnancy is crucial to both, the mother and child. While you consume healthy food for the good health of your baby, you might also want to take a close look at your heart health during pregnancy.

It’s a well-known fact that the heart works overtime during pregnancy; that healthy expecting mothers give birth to healthy babies. And the best way to stay well during this time is to have nutritious food at regular intervals throughout the day. In addition to maintaining a healthy body, it is important to follow healthy habits for great pregnancy heart health. As per research by a team from the Northwestern University, having a hale heart during pregnancy not only gives a healthy baby, but also benefits the child when he/she reaches the teen years. So in a way, you are laying a strong foundation for the baby’s future years in terms of its heart health.

How to ensure good pregnancy heart health?

Risks of heart conditions like cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, coronary artery disease, arrhythmia and congenital heart disease in pregnant mothers have increased over time. These can have mild to major effects on the mother and child. You can avoid such risks and have a healthy pregnancy by following certain habits on a daily basis. So what can you do to maintain excellent pregnancy heart health? Let us see.

Get enough exercise and rest

pregnancy heart health

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Ensuring a good amount of exercise is the key to keeping your heart healthy during pregnancy. Do check with your doctor on what kinds of workouts would suit your body and the level of intensity that’s ok for you. At the same time, it’s important to get enough sleep every day. The right amount of exercise and rest ensures reduced levels of stress, which is highly essential for the mother and child. 

Maintain a balanced diet

pregnancy heart health

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Needless to say, your diet should include nutritious foods like vegetables, whole fruits, nuts, whole grains, lean meat, and the same. What you put inside the body contributes greatly to your heart health and gives you the energy that your body needs. Does that mean you can eat your favourite mayo-based salads and sprouts throughout the day? No. That’s not a good idea. Foods that suited you earlier may not necessarily serve the purpose when you’re expecting a baby. So it’s best to avoid certain foods like raw meats, unpasteurized milk, high-mercury foods, liver, etc. during this time, after consulting your dietician. 

Enroll in prenatal care classes

pregnancy heart health

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When pregnant, you realise that your healthcare professional is your best friend!  Regular prenatal care plays a major role in shaping the health of the mother and child as it gives you the right guidance and helps take preventive measures on time. So with regular health check-ups, you’ll have a clear idea about yours and your baby’s health.

Stay hydrated

pregnancy heart health

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If you’re pregnant, be rest assured that you need much more water than normal. Keeping your body well-hydrated aids digestion and reduces lethargy.  

Avoid alcohol and Smoking

pregnancy heart health

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Alcohol and smoking must be avoided before/during pregnancy and post-delivery owing to its ill-effects. It could lead to premature birth or the baby having Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other such health problems. 

Your health choices make you, regardless of whether you’re pregnant or not. Additionally, since your heart health directly programs the health of your baby’s heart, it’s even more crucial to follow healthy heart tips during pregnancy.

 

References: Pregnancy Heart And Health, Brigham Health Hub, UPMC, Bundoo

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Written by

Vinnie Wong

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