How To Get Your Body Ready For a Healthy Pregnancy

How to best prepare your body for pregnancy and motherhood. (The Health-Minded.com) #health #pregnancy


If you are planning on hearing the pitter-patter of little feet anytime soon, the optimal situation is to be your best, healthiest self before you give life to another. Whether children are on your radar soon or the farthest thing from your mind, if pregnancy is even possible, it is never too early to start preparing your body for it.

Pregnancy or no pregnancy, the actions listed here will certainly make you look better, improve all your numbers (cholesterol, blood pressure, etc.), give you energy and help you feel great, too! And, here is an added bonus -- should a pregnancy occur, your body will bounce back so much faster, too, after the baby is here and be in the best shape for motherhood and give your child the brightest chance.

And, if you need further convincing, check out this post on epigenetics to see the powerful effect you and your actions can have on future generations and their health.






Body Prep For A Future Baby 

So, all you future mommies, take note and get your body ready. But always check with your doctor for what is best for you and your situation:

Find a scale.  Get to a healthy weight before getting pregnant if possible. Achieving a healthy weight before pregnancy and staying within your doctor's guidelines for weight gain during pregnancy can decrease the risk for complications during and after pregnancy for you and the baby. Being overweight or obese before pregnancy increases your risk for conditions like gestational diabetes and preeclampsia as well as neonatal complications for the child.

Those baby pounds are a lot easier to peel off, too, if you are at a good weight for your height before you get pregnant and don't go too much over your doctor's guidelines for adding weight during the pregnancy.


Get a baseline.  It's a good idea to have a basic check up before attempting pregnancy to chart some numbers like blood pressure and basic blood count like a complete blood count (CBC). The doctor should also obtain a thorough family history as well as details on your medications, allergies, and vaccinations.


Move regularly.  It's best have a regular exercise regimen in place before you get pregnant. It's hard enough for many to start one and keep at it, and if any fatigue sets in during the pregnancy (like it did for me in my first trimester), it may be even more of a challenge.  Most doctors recommend, in most cases, regular exercise within a certain heart rate range and level during pregnancy as well. But, it is always something to discuss with your doctor.


Eat best.  Eat a balanced diet now and load up on nutrient dense foods like leafy greens daily. To reduce the likelihood of brain and spinal defects for a potential baby, make sure you are consuming lots of folic acid rich foods like beans and nuts. The Centers for Disease Control recommends 400 micrograms of folic acid every day and some doctors even have their patients start taking prenatal vitamins before attempting to get pregnant to ensure their bodies are enriched with the proper levels.


Clean up your act.  Clear out these unhealthy habits:
  • If you have not already, toss the cigarettes and quit smoking.
  • Lay off the pretty cocktails, or at least discuss that with your doctor. 
  • Avoid fish with higher mercury levels as this can be harmful to a baby's developing nervous system. Here is information on that.
  • Watch your beauty supplies.  Now is the time to consider going organic or at least researching how your current ones stack up against this list of chemicals to avoid.  
  • Familiarize yourself with the clean 15 and dirty dozen with regard to pesticide on foods. 
  • Avoid unnecessary antibiotics to keep your microbiome of your digestive system in its best shape.

Protect your R & R.  Create that time off for yourself. Give your body and brain a break and get proper rest and relaxation. Stress can affect hormones and if you are pregnant, create possible pregnancy problems. Find tools to help you relax like yoga, daily walking, meditation, reading, music, etc.


Don't forget Daddy. You future daddies need to take care, too. Many of these same healthy lifestyle changes listed above apply to you as well.  And, for even more specific information, here is a link regarding fertility and how to best prepare your body for fatherhood as well.




More Pregnancy Sources

If you do become pregnant, here are some great sources to check out to get you started and help you and keep you in the most healthy baby-creating shape:
  • I wish these had been available, too, when I was getting ready to have a baby.


If you have been pregnant, did you have a favorite tip that you think contributed to a healthy pregnancy? Were you in good shape to start carrying a baby when the time came?  Do you have any advice, book titles, websites to add to best prepare and enjoy it?

Need a bit more?

  • Best to shop wisely for those healthy meals you are creating.

Make sure you don't miss a healthy thing!
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This was shared on Jill Conyers Friday Fitness blog hop.
“This post is shared at Healthy, Happy, Green & Natural Party Hop” 



45 comments:

  1. This is something I have been thinking about a lot more recently as my husband and I are thinking of trying for a baby next year. I am focusing on cleaning up my diet and getting to a healthy weight.

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    1. That is very exciting, Dannii! Yes, please do take extra care of yourself and get ready for a wonderful period in your life - parenthood!

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  2. All great advice Lori, getting your body is great shape is so important before getting pregnant, and establishing good habits. I would love to need this advice for myself soon =) Still, will pass it along to my pregnant friends.

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    1. I appreciate that so much, Laura! Give those future children the best start, right?

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  3. I truly enjoyed reading this as I have always had a natural curiosity about how to prepare for pregnancy..the dos and the donts. this was very informative.

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    1. I am very happy you found it so, Kelsey. And, I thank you for coming by and telling me so!

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  4. What an informative post!!! My partner and I don't want to have babies for a while but these are such good tips for any day! Have a great weekend!!!

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    1. Hi Ceara! Happy to hear the post was helpful, and when you are ready, come back and give the post another read ;))

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  5. Great tips! This was fun to read. I hope you have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks, Heather! Much appreciated.

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  6. Great list with so much wonderful information. Looking at your list I think I did a pretty good job at being pregnant :)

    Thanks for linking up with Fitness Friday! Have a wonderful weekend.

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    1. That must be a good feeling, Jill. Thanks for commenting.

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  7. I'm going to click on some of those links, Lori ... thank you! :-)

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  8. Great information, thanks for sharing! One of the best pregnancy advice I found was in an article about Kara Goucher's and Paula Radcliffe's pregnancies: "Pregnancy is not a disease!"

    With my first pregnancy, I had ran the Boston Marathon just a month before we had conceived. Then I found out we were expecting #2 after finishing a local half marathon! With both pregnancies, starting out in shape has helped immensely and continuing to strength train/run throughout the pregnancy makes everything go smoother - from managing pregnancy symptoms to labor and delivery! I'm going to keep on running until the day Baby #2 decides to arrive as long as our midwife continues to give me the "OK".

    Stopping by from the Fitness Friday link-up!
    Amy @ http://www.livinglifetruth.com/

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    1. Sounds like running is very important to you and so smart to check with your midwife regarding that during pregnancy. Thanks for sharing!

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  9. THis is a great article. I have found that staying active is important. I think the key is a healthy heart rate range and activity level. Thanks again

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    1. All great points! Thank you for adding them here.

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  10. Yes! I agree with all of this. I had two kids, and I was able to do this before having my first. It makes a difference. Being in good shape prior to pregnancy also really helps you maintain it when you are pregnant (not to mention help you bounce back postpartum). I sent my husband the Clean 15 post :) We're both visual. I forget what it includes, so it's a nice reminder.

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    1. It really does help you bounce back, doesn't it? Glad the visual for my Clean 15 post helps you too! Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  11. Great advice — although sometimes, as I found out, you can be in optimum shape and it still isn't enough to promote a pregnancy! I had to resort to IVF in order to conceive. That said, I practiced Pilates throughout my twin pregnancy and can't recommend it enough! It's a brilliant way of helping your body cope with the changes that happen throughout pregnancy. It gives you core strength and keeps your back strong. The best thing I could have done, by far! #ShareWithMe

    Caro | www.thetwinklediaries.co.uk

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing your Pilates experience and how it prepared you for pregnancy, Caro. It is great for core and back strength.

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  12. I'm pinning this for future handouts to my clients who are planning to pregnant. I had a client who had trouble getting pregnant but would not lose weight so I stressed the importance of healthy eating. She finally followed my orders and she got pregnant. Thanks for the article. #wowlinkup

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    1. You are most welcome and thrilled the post could possibly help your clients trying to conceive! Thanks so very much, Sheila.

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  13. This is great tips and I always say that to friends that they should get their body ready before they get pregnant. I wish I had done. Now I have to work harder for it. Great advice. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

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    1. It does make it easier to get back in pre-baby shape and lends itself to a healthier pregnancy! Thanks for adding here!

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  14. I did some of the tips you suggested before and during pregnancy. I really believe it went a long way to helping me during the conception and delivery process.

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    1. Happy to hear it! I am sure it did! Thanks for commenting.

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  15. This is such a comprehensive overview regarding ways to get your body ready for a healthy pregnancy! I am so delighted that you shared these valuable tips on with us at the Healthy, Happy, Green and Natural Party Blog Hop! I’m pinning and sharing!

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    1. Thanks for you kind words, Deborah! You are always so positive and generous in that way. I appreciate the share!

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  16. Beautiful, especially your tip about getting active (movement/exercise) before pregnancy! It gives both mom and baby the best start. I can attest! Thanks for this; I'm pinning and sharing with my tribe.

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    1. Thank you so much, Brianne! That means a lot. So happy you are sharing it with potential future parents!

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  17. This is Very interesting post.Thaks you for this post a comment.

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    1. Very happy to hear that! Thanks for commenting.

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  18. You spoke a little bit about how a pregnancy can effect your spinal health. Would you suggest going to a chiropractor? Someone once told me that they can be great assets during your pregnancy. Since my wife is pregnant, we will be trying to do our best to make sure that her health is great. http://www.brookchiropractic.com

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  19. I agree that you should definitely get rid of any unhealthy habits before you get pregnant. Pregnancy is hard emotionally, and it will only make it harder if you are trying to quit smoking during it. I had my first daughter about a month ago, and it was the greatest blessing of my life. I wish that I would have found these tips before I went through the whole pregnancy. http://www.gynchoicesofcentraljersey.com

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    1. Thanks for adding in here, Emily, and it means so much you thought the post was helpful.

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  20. I'll have to check out your article about how to eat healthy. My hubby and I are thinking about having a baby soon. My mother told me that it is wise to start eating healthier foods about a year before you get pregnant. That seems like a long time to me, but it makes sense. It is very important that your body is a great environment for a child to grow. http://www.southorangegyn.net/gynecology-services-monroe-ny.html

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    1. So true, Kent! It will be so helpful for your children to come! So glad you came by. I wish you the best of luck!

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  21. Before pregnancy and after pregnancy we should take serious care of the body; otherwise women are suffering from different problems; most probably due to lack of proper knowledge regarding pregnancy and related things most of the women are suffering a lot. So we need to aware them of different things that bring a safe and healthy pregnancy; in this article we can get some quality of instructions on how to take care of pregnancy. Thanks for such a wonderful and informative blog.

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    1. Robin you are so kind to say so and I do really want to help people live better and healthier lives and especially prepare for future lives to come! Thanks for stopping by and hope to see you back.

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  22. Great article. I like your blog. Thank you so much for sharing.

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    1. You are most welcome and I am so glad you like the blog and find it helpful! Please come back and let me know how you stay health-minded!

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  23. Really good advise. My oldest daughter is expecting her first child, I think I will have her read this. It may be helpful. Thanks for such a wonderful blog.

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    1. Becky - thank you for your positive words! How exciting for you and your daughter and her family! I wish her a healthy pregnancy and great start to motherhood!

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