6. Your Nutrition

Good news—pregnant women should snack often, particularly during the second half of pregnancy! You should have three or four snacks a day, in addition to your regular meals. There are a couple of catches, though. First, snacks must be nutritious. Second, meals may need to be smaller so you can eat those snacks. One nutritional goal in pregnancy is to eat enough food so nutrients are always available for your body’s use and for use by the growing fetus.

Usually you want a snack to be quick and easy. It may take some planning and effort on your part to make sure nutritious foods are available for snacking. Prepare things in advance. Cut up fresh vegetables for later use in salads and for munching with low-cal dip. Keep some hard-boiled eggs on hand. Lowfat cheese and cottage cheese provide calcium. Peanut butter (reduced-fat or regular), pretzels and plain popcorn are good choices. Replace soda with fruit juice. If juice has more sugar than you need, cut it with water.

7. You Should Also Know

No More Lying on Your Back

Week 16 is the turning point—no more lying flat on your back while resting or sleeping, or lying flat on the floor while exercising or relaxing. Reclining in a chair or propped against pillows is OK. Just don’t lie flat on your back!

Lying on your back puts extra pressure on the aorta and vena cava, which can reduce blood flow to your baby. Baby won’t get all the nutrients it needs to develop and to grow. Don’t endanger baby’s wellbeing by forgetting this important action.

Have a Green Pregnancy

Today, many people are looking for ways to become “greener.” They want to do what they can to help protect the environment for themselves, their children and the rest of the world. One way to begin is to have a green pregnancy.

Having a green pregnancy can range from being selective about the products you use to how you treat your body. We’ve gathered together some ideas about ways to have a green pregnancy and list them below.

• Check cosmetics and other personal products you use to see if any contain harmful chemicals. Choose ones that are good for the environment.

• Eat organic foods some of the time to cut down on your exposure to pesticides and other harmful substances.

• Ask friends to give you a green shower. Register for eco-friendly products.

• Buy secondhand baby clothes.

• Make recycling a part of your life every day.

• Donate or sell items you don’t need anymore to make room for baby and all the stuff you’ll need for him or her.

• Try to avoid outdoor pollutants, such as car exhaust and smog.

• Walk when you can instead of driving.

• Grow your own vegetables when possible. A garden can be a wonderful addition to your lifestyle.

• Use energy-efficient light bulbs in your lamps and fixtures.

• Use green cleaning products, laundry detergents and other household products. Check to be sure they’re safe to use during pregnancy–not all green products are.

• Buy a water bottle for your personal use, and use it every day.

Take 1200mg of calcium every day while you breastfeed to help reduce the amount of lead in your milk. If you don’t have enough calcium in your bones, your body will pull lead out of them.

If you have an older home, run cold water for 30 seconds to 2 minutes before you drink it or use it for cooking. Running cold water helps flush out any lead in the pipes—hot water tends to leach lead from pipes. A good water filter can also help.

When fixing up baby’s room, choose no- or low-VOC paint, which has fewer pollutants. (VOC means volatile organic compounds.) If you’re going to install carpet, select natural fibers when possible, such as wool, jute or sisal. Or look for carpets with the Green Label Plus logo—they contain lower amounts of VOC chemicals. You might also ask the salesperson to air out carpet for 24 hours before installation to help reduce harmful chemicals. After carpet is installed, close the door to the room, and open windows and leave them open for 72 hours.

You might also want to keep baby’s bed and bedding natural. Many products are available that are free of dioxins, synthetic petrochemicals and formaldehyde, including crib mattresses and crib bedding.

Tip for Week 16

Some of the foods you normally love may make you sick to your stomach during pregnancy. You may need to substitute other nutritious foods you tolerate better.

Watch your energy consumption, and try to live light. The lower your CO2 footprint, the better it is for the environment. For example, drinking tap water releases almost no CO2 into the atmosphere. However, if you drink bottled water, every bottle of water accounts for the release of 1 pound of CO2! If you take a hot shower for 5 minutes, 3.5 pounds of CO2 are released into the atmosphere. If your shower lasts 10 minutes, 7 pounds of CO2 are released. If you take the bus, 0.2 pounds of CO2 are released per mile, compared with 0.9 pounds if you drive a car that gets 23 miles per gallon.

Remember—if it’s not good for you, it’s not good for baby!

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