Certainly, pregnancy has its joys. It's a miracle to know someone is growing inside you and that someday, a little bundle of joy will come forth. But we are getting ahead of ourselves, aren't we?
In your pregnancy journey, there are many healthy choices you need to make. One of them is staying hydrated and that is the theme of this piece.
As you move on from the first trimester, your body's need for water increases exponentially. This is why most expecting women are advised to take cold showers, plan their outdoor activities in the morning or evening, or go for a swim. The goal is to keep the body temperature to acceptable levels.
Dehydration in pregnant women results in high body temperatures. This in turn could result in premature birth or birth defects. Now you can see why it is essential to give your body as much water as possible.
How much water should you drink each day while pregnant?
The general rule of thumb for everyone when it comes to hydration is to drink at least 8 glasses of water daily. Does that change for pregnant women? Yes, it does.
An expectant woman's metabolism is usually on the fritz. That is to be expected for a single system that is working for two individuals. As such, your water intake has to increase as well.
ACOG (The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) suggests that expecting women should take 2.3 liters of water daily. This translates to 10-8 ounce cups or generally 8 to 12 cups. On a hot day, one can go as high as 3 liters. You can know you are taking less water if your urine starts getting deeply colored.
What are the benefits of staying hydrated during pregnancy?
Staying hydrated, especially in the summer cannot be overstated enough. Continue reading to learn the benefits of keeping your body juiced up.
To regulate body temperature
Everyone craves a few glasses of water on a hot day to cool down the body. But, here's the thing; pregnant women have an elevated body temperature that is beyond the normal level. Thus they still might need a few glasses of water even in the winter.
Tip: Because the body temperature of expectant women is already a little higher than normal, most are advised to take a break from hot tubs and saunas. They can get those temperatures far beyond safety levels for the unborn baby.
To curb swollen feet
During the third trimester, a woman's body begins to produce an excessive amount of sodium leading to swollen feet and ankles (Edema). On top of that, the body keeps producing a lot of fluid (and holds on to more thinking you are dehydrated).
While it may sound counterproductive to add more water to a body that already has more, that is exactly what you need to do. The kidney gets to work some more and this helps to flush out toxins from the body.
When your body is properly hydrated, you won't suffer from frequent headaches and general weariness.
UTIs are common in expectant women. Are you wondering why? Well, pregnant women's pee has high amounts of protein, sugar, and hormones. These need to get out but unfortunately, the ballooning uterine puts so much pressure on the bladder resulting in less urine coming out. This ultimately leads to urinary tract infection.
But when you drink lots of water, most of the sugars, ions, proteins, and hormones are diluted. So they will have little to no effect on your urinary tract. Plus, the fact that you pee often when hydrated means most of the unwanted stuff comes out anyway.
Prevent preterm labor
No one wants to carry a baby, get connected to it all the way only for it to come out prematurely. Sure, this can sound so alarming but it shouldn't if you always stay hydrated.
Stops constipation and bloating
Constipation and bloating are common challenges for many pregnant women. This is because during this period, a lot of hormones are produced and they relax the womb, digestive muscles, and general metabolism. Consequently, this results in constipation and bloating. Drinking plenty of water can fix these issues.
Is filtered water better to drink while pregnant?
Filtered water is the safest choice for those who don't trust tap water. There's peace of mind in knowing your water is free from pathogens, lead, cysts, and harsh chemicals like chlorine.
If for some reason, you don't have access to filtered or bottled water, then you can get someone to check the safety grades of your tap water. If it meets acceptable standards, then it's safe to drink it. Otherwise, you would be better off boiling it first before drinking.
How to recognize dehydration
Dehydration is the struggle your body goes through to retain its normal functioning when water runs low. Tale-tale symptoms that your body has low water include:
- Dry, sticky mouth
- Decreased urination
- Extremely yellow urine
- Rapid heartbeat
- Irritability and confusion
- Dry mucous membranes
- Sunken eyes
- Dry skin
If you witness several of the above symptoms, it is crucial to bump up your water intake. This ensures you and the tiny human growing inside you are safe and healthy.
Stay motivated to drink more water
Like eating fruits and vegetables regularly, drinking plenty of water can get super boring. It can get to a point where it feels like a chore-one that you can't seem to finish. However, there are a few ways you can get moving.
First, get a little cute cup that you can't resist having in your hand. It will motivate you to finish your daily dose of water.
Second, the biggest setback to hydrating is having to get out of your comfort zone to refill your cup. Given how tired someone gets towards the end of pregnancy, it can be easy to ignore getting another refill.
In such instances, having a big bottle next to you saves you the trouble of standing up every now and then. Also, it gets to a point where drinking water feels like a punishment. But it doesn't have to be. To make your water tastier, throw in a few berries or lemon or mints.
Why is ZeroWater a good option for water while pregnant?
While using tap water, a pregnant woman has to be concerned with the possibility of asbestos, lead, chlorine, and other substances harming the baby. If this disturbing situation is giving you sleepless nights, then you need to get a water filter.
Not all water filters are the same. The levels of filtration vary. Take ZeroWater, for instance. This company's filter systems pass water through 5 filtration stages thus removing all dissolved particles.
ZeroWater makes some of the most effective and cost-efficient filtration systems. All their units are certified for lead reduction. So if you didn't know which filtration system to go for, now you do.
Besides water, don't forget to take vital supplements. There are multiple options to try from those that address general wellness to those that specifically address hormonal balance. If you are looking for flavors that can go with your drinks, Binto is the best place to start.
Taking water while pregnant is important. You really don't have a choice. It's obvious you already feel connected to that growing bump. Therefore you must ensure the journey ends successfully.
If you choose to use filtration systems, try those from ZeroWater. Want to throw in supplements? Binto can be a reliable partner as they work with nurses and physician assistants to address the unique needs of each patient. You should check them out. That's it for now. We wish you and that baby bump a fruitful journey. Sayonara!