Can exercise during pregnancy strengthen your unborn baby’s heart? A study by exercise physiologist Dr. Linda E. May found that a mother’s exercise can affect the developing baby’s heart in a very positive way. These unborn babies had lower resting heart rates and better heart-rate variability than the babies of non-exercising mothers. You can read the full article here :http://www.parenting.com/blogs/show-and-tell/melanie-parentingcom/how-exercise-during-pregnancy-affects-your-baby-s-heart
This is an amazing finding, and yet another reason among many for pregnant women not to abandon their exercise program. This is a time of great change in our bodies. Exercise can be a great asset to you while you are pregnant and during delivery and also for your baby. Here are some of the ways exercise helps moms with their changing bodies:
1: Better and more restful sleep : We all know exercise helps us have a more sound sleep, and this is still the case during pregnancy.
2. More energy : Fatigue is a common complaint and can be combated by a moderate level of exercise.
3. Better mood : The fluctuations of hormones during this time can sometimes play with our hormones, but exercise can help keep our spirits up and regulate our mood.
4. Controlled weight gain : Pregnancy and weight gain go hand in hand. Sticking with a reasonable fitness plan can help a woman gain the appropriate amount of weight without adding unnecessary pounds.
5. Eases aches and pains of pregnancy : Back aches, leg cramps and other aches are common during this time. Again, exercise can ease these pains. Relaxation techniques and pregnancy yoga moves can also be a great help. Appropriate abdominal strengthening exercises can also help ease back pain.
6. Stave of gestational diabetes :Diabetes can be difficult and dangerous during pregnancy. Although it is not always avoidable in some women, regular exercise can lower your risk as is the case with Type 2 diabetes as well.
7. Relieve constipation : The movement of exercise keeps everything moving including your intestinal tract. Constipation is a very common occurrence and exercise helps.
8. Easier delivery and postpartum recovery : Those thigh exercises you do during pregnancy can come in really handy during delivery, and strong abs recover faster. Also, the cardio workouts will help your endurance level while in delivery.
Exercise is great for the mom, but how about the baby? There are many benefits for babies as well:
1. Better heart health: As stated in the beginning, when pregnant women train their hearts, the babies’ hearts get stronger and benefit as well.
2. Stronger lungs : Babies of moms who exercise tend to have stronger and healthier lungs
3. Lower birth weight : Babies birth weights are also affected by the moms level of activity. The babies of active moms generally weigh less, and have better muscle tone. Babies with a high birth weight have a more of a tendency toward childhood obesity which can also affect them as adults.
4. Great for their brains! Some studies link a mother’s exercise to better behavior patterns of babies as progress in early childhood years.
Pregnancy is a wonderful and challenging state of life. Embrace it by staying healthy and fit for all the benefits it provides for you and your baby!
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