First trimester to-dos and don’ts
First trimester to-dos and don’ts
DO think of food as fuel.1
Consider your body to be a vehicle that is now transporting your most valuable cargo. Would you want to use subpar gasoline in your car? Certainly not! You don't want to take the danger that it will break down.
Similarly, you don't want to put inferior energy sources into your body. When possible, eat organic foods. This reduces your pesticide exposure.
DO focus on folate.2
- It's advisable to take folic acid as soon as you try for a baby or discover you're pregnant.
- Folic acid is essential for your pregnancy because it can help avoid birth problems called "neural tube defects" such as spina bifida.
- Broccoli, spinach, and other green leafy vegetables, as well as granary bread, beans, and pulses, contain the natural form of folic acid (folate). While including these foods in your diet is beneficial, you should still take your folic acid tablets.
- How much do I need?
- Until the end of your first trimester, you'll need 400 micrograms (mcg) every day (12 weeks).
DO eat the rainbow.1
- Of course, not literally, but when meal-planning or in need of a snack, choose colorful foods such as dark green spinach, orange carrots, red apples, yellow bananas, and blueberries.
- Not only will a diversified diet expose your kid to a variety of tastes and flavors, but it will also provide them with the greatest nutrients and antioxidants.
- Through the amniotic fluid, your kid eats what you eat, so if you eat a wide variety of foods, so will your baby.
- Are you surprised that you're exhausted? Don't be that way! Your body is undergoing significant changes, and your baby is creating a totally new life-supporting system. You may most likely be fatigued on some days while the placenta develops. Furthermore, you are through significant hormonal and emotional changes.
- Take naps when you can. Frequently! If you work, schedule some rest time during your lunch break.
- Make a nighttime schedule and stick to it! Each night, your body will require eight to nine hours of sleep.
- It's fantastic to keep active and fit while pregnant, but make sure you check with your doctor first to make sure you don't have any health issues that prevent you from doing so.
- Try to do 30 minutes of moderate activity, such as walking or swimming, on most days of the week if there are no concerns.
- Regular exercise can help you to:
- assist you in maintaining a healthy weight
- help you relax
- help you get stronger and fitter — beneficial for coping with pregnancy, labor, and parenthood
- help reduce pregnancy-related discomforts such as back pain and varicose veins
DO stay hydrated.1
- Preterm labor can be avoided by staying hydrated.
- It also aids in the prevention of migraines, kidney stones, and vertigo.
- Do you have constipation and hemorrhoids? The good news is that staying hydrated can help you avoid both.
- You're getting enough hydration if your pee is light yellow to clear. If it's dark yellow, you'll need to drink more water.
- Smoking and e-cigarettes should be avoided.
- A woman should not smoke during her pregnancy, so once she learns she's expecting, she should talk to her doctor about quitting the habit.
- Babies born to mothers who smoke are more likely to have birth problems.
- Nicotine in e-cigarettes can harm a developing baby's brain and lungs, making them unsafe to use during pregnancy.
DON’T eat for two.4
- During the first trimester, pregnant women are not required to "eat for two" (women usually need more calories during the second and third trimesters, but not necessarily during the first).
- Women who gain too much weight during pregnancy put their child at greater risk for obesity later in life.
DON’T drink too much caffeine.4
- It's fine to have a little caffeine: around 200 mg (2 cups of coffee).
- Caffeine can pass through the placenta and affect the heart rate of a baby.
DON’T eat raw meat.1
- Pregnant women who consume raw or undercooked meat or eggs risk developing listeriosis and toxoplasmosis, both of which can cause serious and life-threatening infections.
- These infections have the potential to result in serious birth abnormalities and miscarriage.
- Before eating, make sure your meat and eggs are thoroughly cooked.
DON’T visit the sauna.4
- Saunas, hot tubs, whirlpools, and steam rooms should all be avoided.
- A pregnant woman is at risk of overheating, dehydration, and fainting in certain places.
- A considerable increase in the mother's core temperature, especially during the first trimester, could affect her baby's growth.
- According to some studies, using one of these during the first trimester can double the risk of miscarriage.
DON’T clean the litter box.1
- There's no need to be afraid of or avoid your pet cat, but you should delegate litter box cleaning to your partner or a friend.
- In feline excrement, there are millions of parasites, one of which, toxoplasma gondii, is harmful to pregnant women.
- This parasite can cause miscarriage or stillbirth, and babies born with it may suffer major health problems such as seizures and mental disorders.
- It can also cause eyesight difficulties.
1. Sanford Health. Do’s and don’ts during the first trimester of pregnancy. 2019. Available at: https://news.sanfordhealth.org/womens/dos-and-donts-during-first-trimester-pregnancy/. Last accessed at: 28/01/2022
2. NHS. Start4life. Vitamins and supplements in pregnancy. Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/start4life/pregnancy/vitamins-and-supplements-pregnancy/. Last accessed at: 28/01/2022
3. Pregnancy, Birth and Baby. Things to avoid during pregnancy. Last reviewed: March 2021. Available at: https://www.pregnancybirthbaby.org.au/things-to-avoid-during-pregnancy#…. Last accessed at: 28/01/2022
4. Cunha JP. What Should I Avoid During My First Trimester?. Reviewed on 5/24/2021. Available at: https://www.emedicinehealth.com/what_should_i_avoid_during_my_first_trimester/article_em.htm. Last accessed at: 28/01/2022