Pregnancy is a beautiful stage in every woman’s life and to enjoy this stage every mom-to-be should learn to stay healthy. The well-being of every person depends on having a strong immune system that can ward off bacteria and viruses. A strong immune system will not only help you fight diseases, it also will have a positive impact on the development and growth of your baby.
During pregnancy, a woman’s immune system gets suppressed so as to accept a foreign body, the growing fetus. This is the reason why the immune cells or the white blood cells are unable to fight off infections efficiently, often leading to illnesses during pregnancy. Thus, it becomes our own responsibility to ensure our immune system is strengthened for our own as well as baby’s well-being. But how can we keep our immunity strong? The answer is simple – by eating nutritious food, regular exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Here are ways to boost your immune system during pregnancy:
A rich diet comprising of whole food will help you support your immunity.
- Nothing can beat fresh, green leafy vegetables and fruits that keep you and your developing baby healthy and safe.
- Furthermore, drinking lots of water is essential for flushing out toxins from the body and preventing constipation.
- Proteins in any form, including chicken, meat, eggs, soya bean, cottage cheese and natural yoghurt, is extremely important for good immunity and fetal development.
- You should also include essential fatty acids to your diet, which you can easily get from eating nuts.
- Lastly, stay away from processed foods, alcohol, junk food and caffeinated products.
Top Foods to Strengthen Immune System During Pregnancy
Bright Coloured Veggies and Fruits: Pick up brightly coloured vegetables and fruits, such as mustard greens, spinach, oranges, mangoes, turnips, carrots, bell peppers and squashes. Such vegetables and fruits are rich in antioxidants and Vitamin A. Add these veggies to your salads, soups and stews.
Healthy Snacking: Eating healthy snacks during pregnancy can be a smart move. Snack on nuts like walnuts, almonds and flaxseed that are a natural source of fibre and folic acid, and play an important role in brain and body development of the fetus. They provide you with energy and prevent viruses from spreading through your body. A handful of nuts every day would be a great idea for a strong immune system.
Food Rich in Vitamins: Soon after delivery, women would be breastfeeding and hence, it is very important to eat food containing Vitamin D. You can eat oily fish and seafood like oysters and other shellfish. Eggs are a great during pregnancy for their vitamin and protein content. Eat fortified breakfast cereals and margarine. Sit more often in direct sunlight to help your skin produce Vitamin D naturally.
Food Containing Zinc: Zinc plays an important role in sperm production, and strengthening the immune system. It is also the building block of cells and is required for DNA production and maintenance. You can get zinc by eating nuts, shellfish, beans, cereals, wheat germ, oysters and breads.
If you don’t get enough vitamins and minerals through your diet, it gets important to take supplements.
- Vitamin A helps in preventing colds
- Vitamin B helps in fighting morning sickness
- Vitamin C keeps skin infections at bay and also boosts your immunity
- Vitamin D helps in combating seasonal allergies and colds
- Vitamin E helps in boosting immunity
- Daily dose of iron, selenium, zinc and quercetin is also required during pregnancy for better immunity.
Exercise helps in maintaining a healthy weight during pregnancy. Moreover, it lessens symptomatic pain, improves immune system response, maintains your blood pressure and reduces chances of gestational diabetes. It also helps in easy labour. That is the reason why all doctors suggest exercise during pregnancy.
Regular walks are the best way to exercise during pregnancy. It helps the cardiovascular system, removes toxins from the body, reduces stress, improves blood circulation and also helps in boosting the circulation of antibodies.
- Consume just homemade chicken and beef stock with a little sea salt to soothe digestion process.
- Ginger tea keeps respiratory illnesses at bay and can help keep upset stomach healthy.
- Bentonite clay helps in fighting stomach virus.
- Taking probiotics throughout your pregnancy ensures a safe and healthy pregnancy.
- Eat elderberry to avoid colds, respiratory illness and flu.
- Instead of medicines, opt for Vapor Rub to soothe congested nose and airways.
- Crushed garlic with honey acts as anti-virus.
It is very important to understand pregnancy is not a medical condition, but a time to enjoy the coming of a new member in the family. Unwind and stay healthy physically as well as mentally. Always remember positive attitudes and thoughts enhance your emotional attitude. And, this, in turn, improves the strength of your immune system. So enjoy every stage of your pregnancy with the support of your partner, family and friends.