Maintaining Your Weight during the Pregnancy Years

Submitted by shopie on May 15, 2013

Pregnancy and weight gain is an area of major concern for many, with most women having a fear of being unable to shed the extra pounds they gain during pregnancy. The ideal amount of weight gain during pregnancy varies and the trick to getting back in shape after your delivery lies in not putting on too much weight during your pregnancy.

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Excessive weight gain can also lead to complications such as gestational diabetes, high blood pressure and other pregnancy complications. It is wiser to take precautions and not add on too many extra pounds during your pregnancy.

How does one maintain their weight during pregnancy?


The answer is twofold - diet and exercise.

Your diet should provide you with all the nutrition required by both you and your child. Eat a healthy well balanced diet which includes:

  • Lots of fruits and vegetables which will give you with plenty of dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.
  • Low fat sources of proteins such as poultry, fish, soybeans, lentils, low fat dairy products and eggs.
  • Avoid sugary foods like cakes, pastries, soda pop and chocolate as these will only add to pounds you will add on.
  • Drink adequate amounts of water and keep your body well hydrated.

Apart from aerobics, yoga is one form of exercise you can perform during pregnancy that will benefit you physically as well as mentally and spiritually. It is a safe and healthy option and should be done under the guidance of an experienced teacher. Yoga helps you to stay fit and healthy by targeting specific muscles, organs and systems like the circulatory system. It helps you to keep the weight gain under control, tones the body, increases circulation and can even help relieve stress.

Here are a few suggested yoga “asanas” or poses which will help you keep from putting on too much weight during your pregnancy.

  • Extended Triangle Pose (Trikonasana) – Helps to stretch and tone the arms and legs. It improves digestion and stimulates the abdominal organs. It also helps make the hips shoulders and spine more flexible and can help relieve back pain especially in the second trimester of pregnancy.
  • Warrior II Pose (Virabhadrasana II) – This pose helps to strengthen the legs and knees and helps you to build up your stamina. It also stimulates the abdominal organs and aids digestion. It should not be attempted if you suffer from high blood pressure.
  • Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana) – This pose has many benefits. It can help to relieve mild depression and stress, stimulate the liver, kidneys, ovaries and uterus, lower blood pressure and improve digestion. In addition, it is very effective in weight loss.
  • Easy Pose (Sukhasana) – This pose helps to calm the brain and relieve stress. It strengthens the back while stretching the knees and ankles. Do not attempt this pose if you have had a knee injury.
  • Wide Legged Forward Bend (Prasarita Padottanasana) – This pose tones the abdominal organs and aids digestion. It helps to stretch the legs and the spine while having a calming effect on the brain. Beginners may have difficulty with this pose initially and may require support to protect their lower back. Do not attempt the full forward bend if you have lower-back problems.

A word of CAUTION - If not done properly, yoga can result in injuries and should therefore be done under the guidance of a teacher experienced in prenatal yoga techniques. You should also consult your doctor before commencing any type of yoga routine.

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