Tree Life Birth Care in White River Junction, VT, is our newest location for Total Pregnancy Fitness. The center is dedicated to providing balanced, evidence-based support to women and their families during pregnancy, labor and postpartum. They offer doula care, childbirth education, prenatal dance classes, and lactation consulting in the Upper Valley region of Vermont and New Hampshire. For more information, visit http://LifeTreeBirth.com or email Mary Etna Haac at DoulaMaryEtna@gmail.com.
Mary Etna R Haac, MPH, PhD, DONA-trained Birth Doula. Bilingual: English-Spanish. 703–447-98–94.
Have you read the Pregnancy Pathway series on the DTP Blog? Start here and follow the blog through the factors that influence a healthy pregnancy, birth and recovery before, during and after pregnancy. The series was written and edited over the course of a year, with more than a dozen entries. It discusses most of the concerns and questions — from how does my pre-pregnancy health affect my baby? to how soon after birth should I become active? — that we have encountered in 34 years of working with the pre/postnatal population. The flow of topics runs chronologically (see below). But go to the pathway to see the full blown and colorful algorithm!!
BirthSwell maintains an excellent ongoing calendar of events and conferences for childbirth educators and those who support and work with women giving birth. Here is the URL for this calendar:
How many extra calories do you need in each trimester to offset the metabolic cost of pregnancy?
First trimester — 0; Second trimester — 300; Third trimester — 500 (source: Institute of Medicine).
Keep in mind that you may also need calories for any fitness program you are doing. If you are continuing a program, the only change is due to the pregnancy.
If you begin or increase your activity, you need to take that into account. One yoga class = 100 — 150 calories. One aerobics class = 200–400 calories. Walk one mile = 100 calories.
1 slice whole grain bread = 50–100 calories
Be sure you read food labels so that you can balance your food intake and your calorie output. A small woman (under 5′3″ & 130 lbs.) probably needs about 1200 calories per day as a base. A medium sized woman needs about 1400, and a large woman (over 5′9″ & 160 lbs.) probably needs 1600 to 1800 calories. Add your activity and pregnancy needs to your base amount.
What foods are necessary for a healthy pregnancy?
Answer, part A:
PROTEIN. Lean proteins like turkey and those with omega 3 fats like ocean fish and eggs.…yes! EGGS!
Turkey is a good protein
Ocean fish 1 or 2 times/wk = good protein & omega 3 fat
Eggs are a perfect pregnancy food!
70–90 grams of protein are necessary each day, along with adequate water. These are needed to make an extra 40% blood volume required to support the placenta.
Answer, part B:
WATER. Two (2) quarts of water…more if you are very active…are needed to make extra blood and to prevent dehydration.
Question: What else?
Fresh vegetables also provide fiber
Answer: CARBS. Fresh, colorful fruits & veggies provide necessary vitamins and minerals, as well as fiber. Eat 5 servings a day from all the colors: yellow, orange, red, purple and green, and you will get live vitamins all day long that help your baby develop properly! Fruits, vegetables and whole grains are low glycemic index carbohydrates — the good ones!
Dairy provides calcium
Do I need dairy products and red meat? Can I get the needed minerals in other ways?
Calcium is needed in adequate amounts for bones and teeth. It is most easily obtained by drinking milk or eating cheese, yogurt or cottage cheese. Soy, dark green leafy vegetables and calcium fortified juice are alternatives.
Iron is necessary for red blood cells to take up oxygen. It is found in high amounts in beef, and lesser amounts in raisins, spinach, and prune juice. Prenatal vitamins are your insurance against deficiencies of these essential minerals.
Anything else that’s essential?
Yes! Healthy FAT!!
Avocado is an excellent source of omega 6 fat
In addition to omega 3 fats found in fish, walnuts and flax seeds, you need also need omega 6 fats, which are found in avocados, olive oil and other vegetable oils. Healthy fats help balance cardiovascular constriction and dilation, reducing the risk for hypertension.
What is a healthy weight gain?
In 2009, the National Academy of Sciences revised its recommendations. It now bases desirable weight gain on pre-pregnancy BMI (Body Mass Index…google this!).
BMI less than 18.5 (low) — 28 to 40 lbs.; BMI between 18.5–24.9 (normal) — 25 to 35 lbs.; BMI 25.0 to 29.9 (high) — 15 to 25 lbs.; obese women (BMI over 30.0) — 11 to 20 lbs.