Ok...so i just found out that I am going to have a baby here in about 8 and a half months and I have no idea what to do!! I want to make sure that my baby has everything that it is going to need but i have no idea what I am allowed to eat and what I am not allowed to eat? I also smoke and I don;t know if that is good for the baby at this early of a stage or not but I need help from people who have already went through this!!! What am I allowed to eat and drink? How do I be a good mother?
Try to quit smoking as soon as you can. Remember that it is for your baby, that made it very easy for me when I became pregnant the first time. I didn't consider it an option. I was pregnant, I was not going to smoke. I know some people just do not manage, and you absolutely cannot stop smoking, I would suggest looking into getting an electronic cigarette, (or e-cig.) While you are still taking in nicotine, you are not taking in any of the other multitude of even more harmful chemicals or tar. They also do not create any second hand smoke, once baby is here.
I will let someone else expand on foods to avoid, I am vegan and so I did not have to worry much about most things on that list, as I did not eat them anyway. I do know that you should avoid fish because of their mercury and lead content, and of course alcohol. I little alcohol is okay, but if a little is a problem for you, avoid it entirely. Make sure to drink lots of water, and get yourself some good prenatal vitamins right away., and try to eat a healthy, balanced diet, including lots of fruits and veggies.
Educate yourself on your options, some of which people don't even realize are options. Homebirth V.S. hospitals, natural birth V.S. c-section or drugs, the truth of circumcision, immunizations, cloth V.S. paper diapers, co-sleeping, V.S. crib, etc. If you ask me, I birthed both my babies at home with a midwife, naturally, I would never circumcise, though I have girls, we use cloth diapers (more expensive up front, but cheaper in the long run,) we co-sleep, and we do not immunize.
As to feeding baby, the first best option is breastfeeding, the second best option is your own breastmilk given in a bottle, or other method, the third best option is someone else's donated breastmilk (there are organizations to help with this,) and the last option is formula. There are dramatic differences in formulas as well, but I can't speak for those.
I would also like to point out that being a smoker and breastfeeding is still leaps and bounds better for baby than formula. (And much cheaper!)
Know that breastfeeding can be very difficult for your first month or two, expecting this makes it easier to accept this, and get beyond the difficulties so you can enjoy the ease of feedings wherever you are, whenever baby is hungry. It doesn't necessarily come naturally, educate yourself on how to properly latch your baby and breastfeed. Know that it gets easier.
Attend to your baby when your baby needs you, follow your instincts, and ignore people who try to tell you stupid things, (because they will, and there will be a lot of them!) like feeding your baby on a set schedule, and ignoring your baby's cries at night. Know how to intelligently back-up your decisions and stand by them, even if the person telling you that you should shoot your baby full of chemicals you decided not to is your own mother.
Good luck to you, enjoy your journey! Let me know if there are any specific questions you would like answered, and I will do my best to answer them, or direct you to good resources. There are a lot of very helpful people here, and this community meant so very much to me, especially as I was going through my first pregnancy and raising my first baby.
Juise - Vegan-organic food-growing mama to Kaia Hanako - 8 Feb 08, Katalin Reiah - 13 July 10, 4x Little Furry Kitty Friends, 11x Chickens, Assorted Aquatic Life, and Wife to Lee.
First, absolutely no amount of alcohol is safe. Every baby responds differently. One baby might be born to a raving drunk and be fine, another baby might be born to someone who had three glasses of wine during their pregnancy and have fetal alcohol syndrome.
I recommend these books:
http://www.amazon.com/Birthing-Within-Extra-Ordinary-Childbirth-Preparation/dp/0965987302/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328846743&sr=1-1 (I skipped the first four or so chapters of this book.)
Regarding what to eat: well balanced, whole foods. You only need 200 or 300 calories more each day than before you got pregnant. I can't say which meats to stay away from as I'm vegetarian. If you haven't started taking prenatal vitamins with folic acid, start taking them NOW. Folic acid is really important. Also either mercury free fish oil or freshly ground flax seeds (you can grind them in a coffee grinder.) Get plenty of exercise when you're feeling up to it. I exercised throughout my pregnancy and had the pregnancy and labor (what little I had) everyone dreams of. I gave birth at 43.
Regarding stuff: I figure any stuff that keeps you from touching your baby (swings, etc.) is bad for your baby. I love the saying, "The mother is habitat for the baby." Learn about safe co-sleeping. (The baby book above talks about it.)
Congratulations. I love being a mom. It's hard, but so fulfilling.
Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.
Eat: Whole foods. Do your best to avoid packaged foods and chemicals. This would include lunch meats and most prepared foods in a can or box. There are plenty of "rules" regarding what to eat and not eat during pregnancy in this society, but what it mostly comes down to is the above. Some fish is alright, but do your research on mercury (and other chemical) levels. The Monterey Bay Aquarium has a list you can download specific to your region. There are lots of people (including doctors) who will tell you don't eat soft cheeses, don't eat shellfish, don't eat raw vegetables, don't eat whatever. Use some common sense... if you typically eat soft cheeses, I don't see a reason to stop. If you don't, then I don't see a reason to start. etc. One thing I would avoid is sushi or any other raw meat unless you are really sure of your source. Be sure to eat a variety of foods - sticking to the same foods day in and day out is not a good way to get everything you need. From the produce aisle you want to be shopping by color, you want to be eating a whole rainbow of foods, don't stick with just green - red, orange, yellow and purple are great colors too. During pregnancy you particularly need fat and protein in your diet, since these are the building blocks of your baby's body and brain. Eggs are a great source of both, and if you're dealing with morning sickness, they can be hidden in all sorts of things.
Drink: Best is water. Lots of it. Some people believe in the power of drinking milk, I'm not one of them. If you're a milk drinker, I would be making the effort to switch to organic, or at least search out rBGH free milk/dairy. Beyond that, you can drink some herbal teas (preferably unsweetened), but you will need to research the ingredients, since some herbs are not safe. Many women will drink single ingredient herbal teas like mint, ginger, hibiscus, red raspberry leaf, etc., you just buy the herb in bulk and make tea out of it. Avoid juice in any quantity (a glass a day is probably fine, but a quart a day isn't), avoid soda whenever possible. The jury is out on alcohol. There is no known amount that is safe, they don't know where the line is that causes problems. Your best bet is to avoid it completely, but a lot of doctors will tell you a half glass of wine a week is fine. I'll take a sip of DH's beer from time to time, but I'm not going to pour myself one. Caffeine is similar - they don't know where the line is, but if you're a caffeine addict, most docs will advise you to cut back rather than remove it completely. Many mamas do fine cutting back to 1/2 or 1 cup/day. I stick to 1 cup/week myself. But basically, water. Lots of water.
You definitely need to quit smoking though, that's dangerous for the baby, both now and after it's born.
And then I'd suggest you explore the other areas of MDC. Read about birth choices, circumcision, vaccination, car seat safety, co-sleeping, baby wearing, cloth diapering, gentle discipline, etc. Learn as much as you can and figure out what is going to work for you.
Cristeen ~ Always remembering our warrior ~ Our is 3, how'd that happen?!?!
We welcomed another warrior in May 2012!!
2012 Decluttering challenge - 575/2012
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