Archive for newly pregnant

the first half

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Well, pregnancy has been an amazing journey so far! I have surpassed the half way mark and it feels amazing. Since I promised to keep you all up to date on my pregnancy with tips and tricks I found that worked for me, here is my attempt to (not so) briefly describe my journey up until now.

Weeks 4-6

From shock and disbelief to ecstatic and joyous (remember?). I am in a state of complete bliss and totally naive to what is about to rock my world. MUST…EAT…I am ravenous. There seems to be no satiating my hunger, for the first time in a while I need to be organized with handy, ready to eat, healthy snacks. Whatever I can get my hands on goes in my mouth, lucky I choose to surround myself with healthy foods. This is when I would stuff handfuls of raw kale in my mouth if it was what I so desired. I can’t get enough of organic European oranges, they are the best things I’ve ever tasted.

Preggie tips (weeks 4-6):

Weeks 7-11

Oh, so THIS is what morning sickness feels like…ugh. I don’t want anything too flavorful or fragrant, in fact if you choose to eat garlic, you are making a conscious decision to sleep on the couch tonight. Actually, if you so much as breathe my way you will get an unpleasant response straight from the pit of my stomach. All I want is bland bland bland…perhaps a little gluten free english muffin (my favorite time of day), blender pancakes, cornbread, or GF pizza. And keep it comin’ it’s been 2 hours since I ate last…

Pregnancy constipation sets in. Although my baby weighs about 2 grams, the poo baby must be weighing in somewhere around 4 lbs 5 oz…lemon water, chia seeds, prune juice…come on guys, you are so good to me pre-pregnancy. Note to self: do not use old tricks from pre-pregnant life like upon rising drinking only water until you have a bowel movement – this will only lead to throwing up a good 2L of water and turn you off of gulping anything for a while. Of all the things to get turned off of, water is most definitely not ideal.

Seven and a half weeks in I see the heartbeat on the ultrasound and nothing else matters, this is all worth it!! Eleven weeks rolls around & my mind gets the best of me, it’s been too long since I’ve heard the heart beat, I’m starting to feel better…but it’s too early to feel better…something is wrong (though of course nothing was). Note: Some spotting is normal, so don’t freak out and DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT google signs of miscarriage. It  will not ease your mind, in fact it will likely do the opposite.

PS – don’t piss me off…my (w)hormones are raging (optional spelling addition added by my loving husband). This was always good for a giggle when I needed to be snapped out of (w)hormonal bitch mode.

Unfortunately this is the time period where I traveled from Europe to Canada, to Mexico, and back. I am sorry to all my friends and family who had to put up with my extreme whiny-ness…especially my sister who repeatedly listened to me cry, yet made me laugh at the same time, a great confirmation that the pregnancy was progressing normally.

I get a double whammy of sickness (a cold & the flu) in fact my whole family gets sick in Mexico. I have never been so mucousy in my life. Like 5 or 6 kleenex’s may not even do the trick. Keep the vitamin C coming!

I’m tired, if you have the luxury – sleep now, while you still have the opportunity!!

Although this was the “worst” of it all, I must say I feel truly blessed, as even all this was certainly “not that bad”.

Preggie tips (weeks 7-11):

  • a good B-Vitamin complex (with 50mg of P5P, Vitamin B6) is a nauseous prego’s best friend during this stage
  • meditate
  • listen to your body, if you are tired – sleep, if you are hungry – eat (just try and choose healthy options and don’t beat yourself up if you aren’t perfect all the time)

Pregnant travel tips:

  • aisle seats are a good idea
  • make sure to have plenty of B-Vitamins, and Vitamin C (max 2000mg/day) to protect you from getting sick during transit

Weeks 12-20

Wow, I feel AMAZING! The 12 week ultrasound confirms that I have made it past the most crucial hump. We see our baby squirming around, it even turns to look at us, we hear the heart beating, it is the best sound in the world!

My life is starting to return back to normal. My husband is happy to have his wife back. We can eat garlic and onions again. I can cook with ease.

Eggs are a must have around the house, you must not get between this preggie and her daily eggs (of course I mean whole, free-range, local farmers market eggs). But hey they are incredibly nutritious, loaded in protein, fat soluble vitamins and lecithin, which helps ease ligament pain (common for a growing belly) and contributes to building a healthy baby brain.

Chia fresca works it’s magic on this slowed digestive system! YAY!! Finally!!

My energy is back and my mid day naps are a thing of the past. I am keen to exercise, albeit gentle stuff like cycling, yoga and things I can do at home like lunges, squats and push-ups.

Fourteen weeks in, even though it seems early, I feel baby’s first flutters. Incredible!! 18 weeks in and papa gets to share in the excitement. We are super lucky to have felt this so early. Note: baby’s movements are still irregular at this point, just because you don’t feel it ALL the time, does not mean something is wrong. By week 26 they should be in more of a routine, until then a day of few movements is not something to be concerned about.

There is a definite bump starting to poke out…ahh it’s really weird to see myself with a belly, but I love it! My babe is growing fast and furious.

Preggie tips (weeks 12-20):

  • exercise 4 times a week
  • eat your whole, free range eggs
  • now that you can eat anything again, make sure you are conscious to get tons of raw veggies back into your day
  • eat foods high in iron like blackstrap molasses, goji berries, spinach, lentils, sesame seeds, chickpeas and olives

I hope this helps you to learn from my experience and may your pregnancy be equally amazing!!

BTW – is half way too soon to start freaking out about labour? eeeekkk…

Please do share your experience or any tips you might add below!!

In health & happiness,

Sam

i’m pregnant…now what?

Woman checking pregnancy test

Okay, so the fourth pregnancy test has officially confirmed it. You are pregnant! Congratulations!!! But what do you do now? What can or can’t you do? What can you eat? What should you avoid? Where do you begin? Ugh, so much to think about!

I understand how you feel because I was overwhelmed with all the do’s and don’ts, should’s and should not’s as well. To make things simpler for you, I’ve compiled a list of recommendations from various sources which highlight what are in my opinion the most important factors for maintaining a healthy pregnancy.

What to do – first steps

  • book an appointment with your doctor or midwife
  • get some baseline blood work done, blood sugar, iron levels etc.
  • start your pregnancy supplement routine (post coming on this subject) – if you haven’t started already. I advise you to start before trying to get pregnant though
  • sign up for updates on babycenter.ca – I love getting my weekly update on how big my baby is and what is happening developmentally week by week
  • look into other birthing prep classes for you and your partner
  • practice prenatal yoga and other exercise such as swimming, biking, hiking, walking, squats, push-ups, lunges, etc. (jogging is okay in the first trimester but can weaken your pelvic floor during the 2nd and 3rd trimester)
  • meditate – I especially like the prenatal meditations on yogaglo.com
  • strengthen your pelvic floor – do your kegels and learn about the EPI-NO, Pelvic Floor Wellness
  • grease up your belly 2x/day with your favorite all natural belly butter, I like Rocky Mountain Soap Company’s Belly Butter and my homemade concoction of shea butter, raw cacao butter and virgin coconut oil.
  • sleep on your left side, starting in the 2nd trimester for best blood flow to baby

What NOT to do

  • hot tubbing or saunas – warm baths are okay
  • smoke (cigarettes or other things) – avoid second hand smoke if possible as well
  • any sort of detox or cleanse – this is a time to build, not break down. Plus you don’t want babe to get all those toxins that are being released.
  • massage in the first trimester – there are a lot of mixed reviews on this point, a qualified RMT (with prenatal training) should know what is contraindicated in pregnancy and will not cause harm, just choose your RMT wisely
  • google every little symptom – just try to relax and enjoy it all (though I know this is easier said than done…)


What to eat & drink

  • lots of fresh veggies and fruits
  • up your protein intake with organic, free range meat, eggs, legumes, quinoa, nuts and seeds
  • drink at least 2L pure water daily
  • herbal teas which are safe for pregnancy include: red raspberry leaf tea (uterine tonic – for an “easy” labour), peppermint, rooibos
  • try to eat as organic as possible - remember which foods are most important!
  • a little of your favorite superfoods, not so much that you will be detoxing, but some for extra nutrition is great!

What NOT to eat & drink

  • caffeine, especially in the first trimester, afterwards a little is okay
  • alcohol
  • junk food (as much as you might want it), your babe needs vitamins and minerals, not sugar, hydrogenated fats or additives
  • fish that are high/moderate in mercury (personally I chose to nix fish altogether during pregnancy – but I always take my heavy metal free fish oil!)
  • sushi (raw fish – vegetarian sushi is okay)
  • undercooked meats
  • deli meat
  • unpasteurized cheeses
  • soft cheese
  • tap water – trihalomethanes (Chlorine byproducts) can increase risk for miscarriage and still births – use filtered water like Santevia or spring water
  • chemical food additives
  • sugar substitutes (chemical such as aspartame, sucralose etc.)
  • artificial flavors
  • food dyes
  • nitrates (often found in deli meats, hot dogs)
  • sulphites (often found in dried fruits, red wine)
  • herbs – there are several herbs to avoid during pregnancy, but some are safe; consult an herbalist who specializes in pregnancy

Hopefully this list isn’t overwhelming and helps you sort it all out! Best of luck with your pregnancy, and remember to enjoy every second of it!