How to Take Care of Your Heart During Pregnancy
Pregnancy is a beautiful and transformative period in a woman’s life, although it can also be taxing on her body. Some women struggle to find a healthy routine during pregnancy; heart health, especially, can be a particularly difficult domain to navigate. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it even more complex to cultivate a heart-healthy lifestyle due to restrictions and general safety. While doctors will still closely monitor your pregnancy, there are a few things you can do yourself in order to make for a heart-healthy nine months.
Set Yourself Up for Success
If you’re thinking of conceiving, take stock of your current health in order to set yourself and your future baby up for success. If you have any health concerns, you should address them before attempting to conceive. Seek a doctor’s guidance on the best route for your unique pregnancy journey. You will want to get your blood pressure levels, heart rate, weight, and other major health markers stabilized in order to provide the most hospitable environment for a fetus.
This will also put potential complications on your radar before they arise during pregnancy. If you have health issues before becoming pregnant, they will likely affect the healthiness of your gestation. Going into your pregnancy as healthy as possible will be key to the foundation of a healthy gestation.
Monitor Your Blood Pressure
Even if you usually have healthy blood pressure, pregnancy can oftentimes change that. High blood pressure during pregnancy, also called gestational hypertension, is common in the second half of gestation. It occurs when your BP numbers increase over the threshold of 140/90 mm Hg. In most instances, this condition is remedied after delivery, but it’s still important to manage throughout the pregnancy in order to ensure your own safety and that of your baby. Be aware of risk factors such as having kidney disease, diabetes, or multiple pregnancies.
Manage Your Diet
Pregnancy cravings are serious business but overindulging during pregnancy can spell disaster for your heart health. Consult a doctor for a specific dietary course, but in general, remember to nourish your body and fetus with lots of nutrient-dense foods. While a greasy burger or an excess of fries might sound appealing right now, try not to get into unhealthy eating habits. Think lots of fruits, vegetables, and fiber, as these types of food not only keep your body healthy, but they also provide energy.
Avoid Excess Weight Gain
In the same thread, managing your weight is important during pregnancy. While some weight gain during pregnancy is normal and expected, avoid venturing into obesity. As previously mentioned, a healthy diet is important and will aid in this goal. Additionally, getting frequent exercise will help keep your weight under control.
You will have to be more careful in the types of workouts you do as you don’t want to put any stress on the baby. Try low impact exercises such as walking or yoga to keep the blood pumping without any shaking or force on the belly.
Keep Your Blood Flowing
During pregnancy, your blood volume increases by 30 to 50 percent in order to supply enough blood for the baby as well as yourself. This increase can put additional stress on your cardiovascular and circulatory systems. In order to prevent blood pooling and vein issues such as varicose veins, try elevating your appendages when lounging and avoiding excessive periods of immobility.
A healthy pregnancy looks different for everyone, and only a qualified doctor can tell you for sure what the best route is. We understand that heart health is important for women, especially right now during the COVID-19 pandemic. Cardiovascular Group has a team of dedicated doctors that specializes in heart health, and they can help you develop the best lifestyle to protect you and your baby.