Pregnancy brings along a whole host of physical and emotional changes and being pregnant over the Christmas period can be demanding.
It’s hard to imagine Christmas without the glass of bubbly in your hand while wearing your favourite sparkly dress and nibbling on a lovely salmon canapé. Well, now you’re pregnant and you aren’t allowed the bubbly, the dress doesn’t fit and the raw fish makes you nauseous.
So how on earth are you going to survive Christmas while pregnant? We’ve gathered tips from our panel of pregnancy and parenting experts – Dr Chiara Hunt and Marina Fogle, founders of The Bump Class – to help you prepare for the festive chaos.
Drinking while Pregnant at Christmas
You might be in the early stages of pregnancy and not yet ready to tell anyone. If you don’t want to get rumbled by friends who will immediately assume you are pregnant if you opt for the ginger beer, then taking a glass of something and just holding it is a good way to throw them off the scent.
“We love the Seedlip spirits which feel like a good old-fashioned tipple but are in fact tee-total,” explain Dr Chiara Hunt and Marina Fogle. “Make sure that you’re near a loo to relieve your poor squashed bladder!” they add.
Try to Eat Before Going to a Party
It’s a good idea to try and eat before going to a Christmas party, as a lot of canapés won’t be very pregnant-friendly. Raw meat and fish, rich cheese, and high sodium foods are everywhere during the festive period, so avoid those tummy aches and eat beforehand. If you can’t, always carry a healthy nut bar or snack that you know won’t harm your baby in your purse.
“The reason pregnant women are advised to stay off certain foods is that, while you carry your baby, your immune system is slightly lowered so you do not reject your own baby. If you have some rare beef, for example, any bacteria lurking there, which has not been killed by the cooking process, may get through your lower-than-usual immune defences and may make you unwell,” Louisa van den Bergh, founder of LuluBaby, reveals.
Take a Seat
Although you can’t get the party dress on anymore, you may be able to squeeze yourself into the shoes. If you’re really keen on wearing heels out to the Christmas parties, at least bring a pair of flats in your bag. You’ll be surprised how much more your feet ache when you’re carrying around your baby bump.
If there is nowhere to sit, which can be the case, then try standing with your weight equally distributed across your two feet, just a little wider than shoulder width apart, shoulders down, knees straight, but not locked, and abdomen tightened. Try to avoid the pregnancy pose of pelvis tilted forward with stomach out and back curved. Remember, it’s not forever and you’ll soon have a little baby in your arms that’ll make it all worth it.
It seems that the only thing you really can indulge in at Christmas as a pregnant woman is sleep. Normally, you’ll be able to get some time off so use it to rest. Particularly if you’re near the end of your pregnancy, as you’ll need all the energy that you can get to prepare for the birth. Give yourself the gift of rest this Christmas!
Dr Chiara Hunt and Marina Fogle add: “Acknowledge the tremendous amount of work your body’s doing and give it the energy to do this. If you’re staying with noisy relatives, don’t forget to pack the ear plugs!”
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