Dr. Daniel Roshan offers expert advice on staying healthy during pregnancy.

Photo by lucas Favre on Unsplash

Dr. Daniel Roshan, Director, ROSH Maternal-Fetal Medicine based in New York, NY shares in a Q&A his expert advice in staying healthy and fit while pregnant.

Q. Women who are in shape, can they still workout when they become pregnant?

A: Exercise in a normal pregnancy is highly recommended. Keeping active and avoiding excessive weight gain in pregnancy, increases the rate of vaginal delivery and complications of childbirth. Maternal weight gain in view of a healthy placenta has direct relation with fetal weight gain. The bigger the fetus the harder the delivery specially for the first-time mothers. Most mothers with fetal weight of 7.5 Lbs do very well, however when the fetal weight goes above 9 lbs risks of c section, difficult labor and complications goes up tremendously for the first-time mothers.

Of course, the mothers who are in shape and exercised regularly prior to pregnancy could do more exercise. In general, we recommend mothers to avoid abdominal exercises, heavy lifting, strenuous activity and increasing their body temperature.

Mothers who are fit could lift as long as they don’t put pressure on their abdomen. 

Q: Is it best to work out less when you are pregnant?

A: Monitoring weight gain and recommend a balanced diet and mild exercises are the best that an OBGYN could recommend to her patients.

High risk pregnant patients (mothers with any known problems or complications) should seek their doctor’s advice before any exercise, especially if they have preterm labor or are at risk for preterm labor, vaginal bleeding or history of complications. 

Q: How about those who haven’t worked out or started a new exercise program?

A: For the mothers who did not exercise before, light activity is recommended, running under 2.8 mil/hr for 30-40 minutes, Nordic walking, yes, at lower speed so the mother won’t sweat and increase the body temperature, usually under 3 miles per hours should be ok, light weight lifting, swimming, maternity yoga and stretches are good. 

You might also enjoy this article on how to keep your core strong during pregnancy.

AuthorChristine Blanchette is a freelance writer for Optimyz Magazine print and digital issues and sometimes helps with editing.

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