Fueling a Healthy Pregnancy

Published on November 03, 2021

Healthy Eating Pregnancy

Fueling a Healthy Pregnancy

Keeping a healthy lifestyle is especially important when you are pregnant. A well-balanced diet helps meet the special nutritional needs that your baby and your body have during pregnancy.

Add Just Enough Calories

When a woman is pregnant, she might hear, “You’re eating for two now!” Homayara Haque Aziz, MD, an OB-GYN who practices at Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center explained the saying is true to an extent, but you shouldn’t think of pregnancy as a time to eat twice as much.

“If you are a healthy weight and expecting one baby, you typically will not require any extra calories in the first trimester,” Dr. Aziz said. “In the second trimester, you need around an additional 340 calories per day and an additional 450 calories each day in the third trimester.” When adding additional calories to your diet, try to get them from healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and proteins, and limit junk food and sugary drinks.

Stay Well Hydrated

When you’re expecting, you need more fluids than you did prior to your pregnancy. You should aim for at least 8-12 glasses of fluids each day. “Fluids help play an important role in getting nutrients to your baby,” Dr. Aziz said. “While water is a great source of fluids, you can also try drinking sparkling water, milk, protein drinks or even soup.”

If you’re having trouble getting enough fluids, try carrying a water bottle wherever you go as a reminder to stay hydrated. Adding fruit to your water for flavor also may be a good way to help you increase your fluids.

Take Prenatal Supplements

If you’re pregnant or planning to get pregnant, take prenatal vitamins. Even women with healthy diets can miss out on key nutrients. “Prenatal vitamins are vital for your baby’s development,” Dr. Aziz said.“ They include the appropriate amount of folic acid, iron and calcium to help support a healthy pregnancy.”

World-Class Care for babies on the Go

Babies who need to travel to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center in Rockville, Maryland, have a new ride, featuring the same sophisticated technology found in the hospital.

This summer the NICU began using its new Voyager Transport Incubator™. The transporter allows for on-the-go intensive care for critically ill babies, including:

  • Total body cooling
  • Neurological support
  • Conventional ventilation or high-frequency
  • ventilation (400 to 900 breaths per minute)
  • Phototherapy for jaundice
  • Inhaled nitric oxide therapy for respiratory failure

The transporter helps nurses monitor vital signs and change the position of infants while they are on the move. The incubator reduces noise, comes equipped with an eye shield and has a shock-absorbing mattress.

The Level III NICU at Shady Grove Medical Center transports about 50 babies a year from surrounding hospitals, including Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center, when they need more advanced care.

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