Yes, I’m going there. It’s time to talk about poop or lack of it. Approximately 50% of women during pregnancy experience constipation and of course its blamed on our surge of hormones. Particularly, the higher amounts of the progesterone hormone relax the muscles throughout the body, especially affecting the digestive tract.
However, it is not just the hormones that cause constipation. You may feel or be constipated from an overwhelming amount of stress, lack of physical activity or overeating milk and dairy products.
I love a good poop and I’m not embarrassed to say it, which is why I researched the hell out of constipation during pregnancy and do everything I can to combat it. And because I think having good bowel movements is crucial to a happy life I’m sharing with you my tips to avoid this common symptom.
Tip 1: Get Exercise.
I know the last thing you want to is exercise. By the time I get home from work all I want to do is sleep but I promise you a long walk or 20 minutes on the elliptical will really help your digestive tract. I have tested this method and I promise it works. It’s actually what inspired me to share these tips. Before writing this blog I did 20 minutes on the elliptical for the fourth day in a row and guess what, I had a regular poop!
Tip 2: Drink More Water.
Now that our morning sickness has subsided we are getting fewer fluids but it is still super duper important to keep drinking water. The best thing I did during pregnancy was to get a brand new water bottle and keep it with me constantly. I always make sure its filled with cold water and I sip it throughout the day. Some sources say to even double your water intake during pregnancy.
Tip 3: Eat a High Fiber Diet.
As good as the pizza or nachos sound each day remember your digestive tract may regret those choices. It’s important to eat between 25g to 35g of fiber each day. This can be in the form of fruits, veggies, legumes, and whole grains. I got hip to the GG crackers and will eat them with my eggs in the morning or melt cheese over them to make pizza.
Tip 4: Take a Pregnancy Probiotic.
I love probiotics because of the support they give to your digestive tract. If you’re unfamiliar with probiotics they are live microorganisms, ‘good’ bacteria that are like those found naturally in our guts. When you take a probiotic regularly it can improve your digestion and reduce things like constipation and heartburn. My favorite pregnancy probiotic is the Garden of Life Prenatal Probiotic for Women.
As always, consult your doctor before beginning any new vitamin or medication.