Are you an expectant mom? Here's what all they tell you.
When that little seed is growing into a tiny sapling in your belly, you feed it with the water of your love, sunlight of your smile and the chlorophyll of your calm mind, giving it the right nutrients from your diet. Every pregnancy is different but an expectant mother receives numerous advises every time she speaks to someone. Choosing from among huge piles of advise can be confusing to her. Here are the most common things that people tell a pregnant woman that need not be how they seem. Take a look.
Don't Exercise, Take Complete Rest:
Though science suggests exercising to a pregnant woman, elders in countless Indian households warn a pregnant woman against exercising. They ask her not to walk much or do any cardio or weight training. All she is expected to do is small household activities that need no physical strain. But, that's not how it should go. Exercising keeps your mind and body healthy. If you are used to exercising, continue to do it even after you hear the good news. Refrain from heavy workouts but do not stop light to moderate exercises. Several videos are available online about safe prenatal workouts. If you aren't used to working out, start with basics like pranayam (breathing exercises), simple prenatal yoga and go for a 30min brisk walk everyday. Seek your doctor's opinion and go ahead.
Eat Whatever You Want:
Elders often ask pregnant woman to eat whatever they feel like eating. They stress about food cravings during this time and advise not to hold back. But that's a strict NO. Eating too much sugar, consuming too much of caffeine or soft drinks just because you are craving, can harm your health. "Eat whatever you want and don't supress the food cravings" is something that doesn't work. Eat fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts and drink lots of fluids. Eating healthy during pregnancy will help you get back/recover faster post pregnancy along with keeping you away from pregnancy-induced issues like Hypertension and diabetes. Your baby also comes out to be healthy. You can consume sweets and soda once in a while to pamper yourself though. Just 'once in a while'.
Hormones Are To Be Blamed:
Pregnancy causes mood swings and hormones are the culprits - that's true but succumbing to mood swings is not ok. Crying for no reason or for simple reasons, becoming negatively emotional and showing signs of disappointment and anger, though are common, should not be taken forward for longer times. Don't let anyone back you up for your bad mood. Self pity is destructive. If you are suffering severe mood swings, it would definitely effect your health even when you aren't pregnant. But when you are pregnant, the effects of this double up. Most Indian elders don't approve mood swings and thrash the concept of mental health. So, your job is to try your best to stay calm. Try slipping into sleep whenever you feel disturbed. Try going for a walk or listening to music or meditate or just sit with a blank face. Again, exercising helps keep your mood swings balanced. Try out. Why not think about the little one that's arriving and talk to her? Little humans are definitely the best stressbusters.
Don't Work, It's Time To Rest. Nothing Is More Important Than The Baby:
Agree. Nothing is important than the baby. But stopping to work will definitely make you feel dejected, low in spirits and the free time you have, is consumed by irrelevant thoughts that lead you nowhere. Keeping yourself constructively busy in a work that fulfills your needs while also relaxing your mind is the best thing you can do. Step down from advanced or challenging tasks at the workplace for a few months. Take up the mediocre work instead. Your boss or HR can guide you in the best possible way. If you aren't working, then you can spend your time on revisiting your favourite hobbies like reading, writing, painting, gardening, photography, etc. Don't sit idle. No. No.
Well, I'm not telling you not to listen to elders. My whole point is to remind you that your body is the most important tool that tells you what to do. Listen to your body, listen to the leads it gives you. If it is signalling tiredness, rest. If it is lazy and dull, get up and exercise. If it is giving hints of some pain or cramps, lie down or drink hot fluids. Carefully observe and listen to your body and you are halfway there. Listen to all the advises you receive from people and follow what your body is comfortable with.