The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists(ACOG) recommends exercising at least 30 minutes a day. If you did not exercise on a regular basis before pregnancy then you should talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise program.
Regular exercise during pregnancy can benefit you in the following ways:
- Helps reduce backaches, constipation, bloating, and swelling
- May help prevent or treat gestational diabetes
- Increases your energy
- Improves your mood
- Improves your posture
- Promotes muscle tone, strength, and endurance
- Helps you sleep better
A balanced diet is a basic part of good health at all times in your life. During pregnancy, your diet is even more important. The foods you eat are the main source of nutrients for your baby. Healthy eating will be a major benefit for you and your baby.
Numerous studies have shown that smoking while pregnant is harmful to both baby and mother. The numerous poisons you inhale while smoking are carried through your bloodstream directly to your baby. Smoking while pregnant can contribute to the following:
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Vaginal bleeding
- Fetal brain damage
- Growth retardation and low birth weight
- Abnormal infant blood pressure
- Mental retardation
- Respiratory disorders during childhood
- Learning and developmental problems
- …and many more
It is strongly recommended that women do not drink alcohol while pregnant. Using alcohol while pregnant is the leading known cause of mental retardation according to ACOG. Women should avoid drinking alcohol entirely while pregnant or trying to conceive.