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How to have a healthier, happier pregnancy

pregnant woman

Pregnancy is not without its physical challenges - fatigue, back pain, digestive problems, poor circulation and skin rashes are some of those. Here’s how to limit the unpleasant aspects and have a more enjoyable pregnancy:

  • Vitality (or fatigue)
  • Digestion
  • Skin (or skin problems)
  • Circulation
  • Back (or back problems)

Maintaining energy levels

During pregnancy, you feel more tired because your body is consuming more energy. A flood of progesterone in the first few months can even have a sedative effect. The result? Pregnant women often feel fatigued. This tiredness can be emphasized by disturbed sleep patterns caused by pain or discomfort.

4 tips for maintaining your energy:

  • Take the time for a daily nap: 20 minutes rest will help you save your energy for the rest of the day
  • Eat meat, fish or pulses rich in iron at least once a day to avoid anaemia
  • Replace your snacks with fruit to get a dose of vitamin C
  • Take a course of plant-based treatments beneficial for sleep: lemon balm, orange blossom, lime tree, camomile or anise

Managing digestive problems

Hormones secreted during pregnancy relax the muscles of the digestive system and the lower intestines, which may lead to upset bowels. Here are our tips to handle the bloating, constipation, heartburn and nausea associated with digestive trouble.

4 rules for preventing digestive problems:

  • Eat light, frequent meals by complementing the traditional 3 meals a day with 2 or 3 healthy snacks to reduce nausea
  • Drink lots of water, eat whole grains and vegetables to encourage digestive transit
  • Take the time to properly chew your food to avoid bloating
  • Prevent acid reflux by banning overly rich or acidic foods

Keep your skin beautiful

During pregnancy your skin is put through the wringer. Acne caused by excessive oestrogen, stretch marks on stomach and breasts, and dehydrated skin are common complaints. Now’s the time to take care of your skin…

3 ways to maintain beautiful skin:

  • Use a super-hydrating shower gel and moisturizer on your stomach, hips, thighs and breasts to prevent the appearance of stretch marks
  • Protect your face with high SPF sun cream to prevent « pregnancy mask »
  • Introduce cleansing gel and a light face cream into your routine to prevent acne

Getting around circulation problems

During pregnancy, the increase in blood flow, the compression of the veins around the abdomen, weight gain and hormones can disturb the circulatory system. Blood can stagnate in the veins and lead to a heavy feeling in the legs.

5 solutions for preventing circulation problems:

  • Continue to practice a regular physical activity: 20 minutes of fast walking improves blood flow
  • Avoid high heels: they reduce the contact your foot has with the ground and the pressure necessary to get blood flowing back up to the heart
  • Choose loose-fitting clothing: too-tight trousers can block blood flow
  • Raise up your legs with a cushion in bed to help blood circulate
  • Get a boost from a plant-based solution with recognised health benefits for circulation (horse chestnut, butcher’s broom, witch hazel), available as a topical or oral solution

Saving your back

When your stomach swells, your back arches and the abdominal muscles, stretched by pregnancy, can’t do their job. Your lower back ends up doing the work. You’re not alone - back pain plagues a majority of pregnant women.

4 tips for saving your back:

  • Try not to stand up too long to save your posture muscles
  • Don’t carry heavy loads – they put a strain on your back
  • Avoid high heels that encourage an arched back
  • Swim to gently stretch the spine

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