Special Care during Pregnancy
There are certain pregnancies which need special care and close monitoring by the doctor. It is important to be aware and take steps in the right direction to have a safe and healthy pregnancy.
Iron deficiency in the mother may lead to anaemia, which can be found out by a simple blood test. Iron is needed in pregnancy for the following reasons
- Formation of blood for the baby’s growth
- To replace the blood lost during delivery
- To provide for reserve for the baby as the mother’s milk lacks sufficient iron.
If the blood tests at the clinic indicate anaemia, corrective measures should be taken which include
Eating food which is rich in iron, while avoiding liver and liver products during pregnancy. The following food are good sources of iron:
- Dark green leafy vegetables like beetroot leaves, spinach etc
- Red meat
- Poultry etc
Vitamin C helps in the absorption of iron hence with the increased iron intake there should be an increased intake of vitamin c too. Some good sources include lemon, amla(Indian gooseberry), kiwi, oranges etc .
The doctor can prescribe iron supplements. Take iron supplements on a full stomach, after meals. Include a lot of fluids as iron supplements may cause constipation, nausea or even diarrhoea.
Diabetes is a group of diseases that results in high blood glucose levels. Simply put, it is caused by too much sugar in the blood. The blood sugar levels need to be constantly monitored during pregnancy. Many mothers though not diabetic, develop this problem during pregnancy, which is known as gestational diabetes. This nearly always disappears soon after delivery.
Lifestyle modifications need to be done to manage diabetes.
- Try to include complex carbohydrates in your diet like oats , barley etc along with a lot of fiber. This promotes satiety along with a good bowel movement.
- Avoid too much animal protein as it is difficult to digest and has sodium which may cause water retention. Include plant protein like pulses, beans legumes in good quantities.
- Try to eat a lot of coloured vegetables which along with providing antioxidants, also provides soluble fibre.
- Consult a good dietician who can guide you about low glycemic and high index foods which is needed to be understood by diabetics. Good food for diabetics include oats, barley, fenugreek, low fat dairy. Avoid white bread, sweet and overripe fruits and vegetables, starchy vegetables like potato arbi, yam etc.
- Consult your doctor for the right kind of exercises which can be done to control diabetes and have a healthy pregnancy.
- Inform your doctor about your pregnancy so that the dose of medications and supplements are adjusted accordingly
- It is imperative that the blood sugar remain normal so the doctor may adjust the insulin intake for pregnancy.
With the right kind of guidance and lifestyle modifications, one can have a very normal pregnancy despite any medical/lifestyle disorders.
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