Before my pregnancy I was a real camel. I could live days in a row without drinking much water. Bad  behaviour, since our bodies are made of 70% water, we all need big amounts per day to maintain some balance. During pregnancy it’s even more important.

When I got pregnant I started to suffer from headaches, swollen feet and legs. I felt weird contractions long before I should have them. Both my doctor and doula made it clear: “Rakel: You are not drinking enough water”. I was dehydrating without knowing it. Yes, I felt lethargic, dizzy at times. My heart beat rose only by washing the dishes. So I had to change my water drinking habits.

I started drinking the average amount of water suggested during pregnancy: 2 and a half to 3 litters daily (You may check with your doctor, but that’s about it). It wasn’t easy,  but the change was incredible.

I started to experience in my body and pregnancy the fantastic benefits of water:

❤ Water helps prevent some common pregnancy problems like constipation, haemorrhoids and bladder infections.

❤ Water helps maintain a good level of amniotic fluid, and that is VERY important for the baby to nestle in.

❤ Water carries nutrients through your blood towards the baby.

❤ Water, dissolves waste products and helps flush them from the kidneys.

❤ Water hydrates you so you will feel less fatigue specially in the third trimester.

❤ Water keeps your skin hydrated and beautiful.

Oh, and don’t hesitate to drink water and other fluids because you’re afraid of retaining water. Weird enough, the more fluids you drink during pregnancy, the less your body retains. So if your feet and ankles are swollen,  drinking more water actually helps.

Of course, after birth drinking water is also imperative, especially for nursing mothers who are maintaining a milk supply for their babies.

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So to start right away changing your water intake habits you can:

1-    Find the right container for you: Yes, these kind of details are really helpful. Decide where you want to drink your water from. Find a nice container that makes it enjoyable and easy to drink from. Make sure to wash it every night. You can have at home a container with your target amount and try to finish it by the end of the day filling your bottle from there. And of course you can buy plastic bottles a less nature friendly system but that works too.

2-    Remember to really drink the water in your container when you go out. Sometimes we just carry the bottle with us drinking little sips and when we get home the bottle is more than half filled, and it has become a bit heavy and warm and we don’t feel like drinking it anymore. So step two. REALLY MAKE PAUSES during the day to actually DRINK THE WATER. If necessary set the alarm of your mobile phone so it reminds you to DRINK WATER!

3-    Making water tasty: If you are like me that don’t like pure water’s taste, try adding a wedge of lemon or lime to your water, or a bit of mint, also frozen fruits like apricot, strawberries or any other fruit for additional flavor.

4-    When you drink the water, do it having nice thoughts. Send nice thoughts to the baby. That will add a big benefit to the whole process.

5-  Just in case, caffeinated beverages, such as colas, coffee and  teas shouldn’t be counted as part of your fluid intake because they’re diuretics. Diuretics make you urinate more so you actually lose water. (And by the way, don’t retain the desire to pee too long, it can produce infection). Keep in mind that juice and sweetened drinks also provide a lot of extra calories, so don’t rely on them too much.

You will find many other suggestions for your well-being in our pregnancy program Blooming Together. It contains relaxations, meditations and exercises for each week of your pregnancy.

And now go, to pamper yourself and your baby with a big glass of water! See you soon!