Staying hydrated is essential to help ease pregnancy problems such as constipation, fluid retention and hemorrhoids. Make it a point to drink large cups or glasses of fluids and to keep a water bottle handy. Limit your intake of carbonated and caffeinated drinks. Skipping alcohol altogether is high plus during your entire pregnancy phase. Aim to drink 8 glasses of 225 ml or 8 oz of fluids daily, with water being the main choice. Space your fluid intake throughout the day. Since you are eating smaller, more frequent meals you should consume larger, more frequent drinks.
A 225 ml or 8 oz glass of cow's milk contain about one third of your daily recommended calcium requirements - make that three glasses and you have reached 100%. If you have lactose intolerance try rice milk or lactose reduced milk. Try low fat or non fat milk which may contain slightly higher amounts of calcium if weight is an issue.
Herbal tea is okay to drink but play safe by drinking in moderation. While the word herbal conjures a safe image in your mind, remember that herbs are drugs. High doses of some herbs may cause diarrhea, heart palpitations and vomiting. Having highlighted that, herbal preparations bought in the form of tea bags are considered safe during pregnancy. If herbal tea is your thing, look out for the ingredients that you would normally make a part of your diet such as lemon, peppermint or jasmine and stay away from weird contents such as cohosh or mugworth, all worth avoiding during your pregnant months. Make your own concoctions using juices, cinnamon, ginger or lemon rind along with boiled water or decaf tea.
Go ahead and enjoy your morning cup of coffee so long you don't overdo it. Statistics show that women should not exceed 300 mg (less would be preferable of course) of caffeine in a day. This is equivalent to 3 mugs of instant coffee, 6 cups of tea or 8 cans of cola. High levels of caffeine - 400 mg a day may affect baby's respiratory system, decreased birth-weight and one study even linked this exposure to SIDs. Taken in moderation, caffeine will do no harm to you or your fetus. Many women choose to eliminate caffeine totally from their diet and switch to decaf beverages, mildly brewed tea and juices instead of colas. Beware - chocolate drinks also contain some caffeine and those high energy drinks contain quite a bit of it.
Your organs cannot function well without water and your body uses water even more during pregnancy. Water is important for the formation of plasma which is vital for your increased blood volume and for the formation of the amniotic fluid. Water helps to flush out waste, prevent bladder infections - your urine stays diluted and you will urinate more which lessens the chance of bacteria multiplying in your bladder. Drinking lots of water keeps constipation at bay and helps in the prevention of hemorrhoids. Finally the more water you drink, the less fluid retention you will experience. Edema is a common complaint where a woman goes through swollen feet and hands as pregnancy grows. So you don't like the taste of water… try adding a lemon wedge or a splash of juice for flavor. Sparkling water both flavored and unflavored are safe bets.
Aspartame found in many diet drinks is considered safe for drinking during pregnancy but once again practice caution on the amounts you can have. It is recommended that adults should not exceed 2800 mg per day or 14 cans. Saccharin another form of sweetener found in foods is also considered safe but again moderation is the key. Pregnant women who are overly concerned about their weight or simply detest the taste of water get hooked to these diet drinks; they tend to replace healthy drinks such as milk, water and juices with these diet colas. In the long run, baby and mother will lose out.
The truth is where to draw the line when it comes to safe levels. Further, every woman metabolizes alcohol differently because of individual body makeup. Alcohol effect intensifies if the diet is inadequate, intake of caffeine is high and smoking pregnant ladies. Many health experts recommend that pregnant women stay clear of alcohol altogether since it can be difficult to stick to one drink once a week. Bear in mind the occasional drink that you consume will pass to your baby through your bloodstream. If you do decide to indulge, drink one drink once or twice a week with a meal. No one type of alcohol is better than another: a small can of beer, a small glass of wine or one measure of spirits all contain roughly the same amounts of alcohol.