4 Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

On February 5, 2024
In Blog

Spring is a time of new beginnings, and there is no greater new beginning than the birth of a child. At The Alliance for Health Equity, our mission is to advance a more equitable, resilient and healthy Greater Coatesville community. If you are planning on getting pregnant or are already expecting and are seeking assistance, you can find health materials via our website, in both English and Spanish, with important information on where to get care, how to find a doctor, and how to secure insurance for Coatesville residents. Click here to view and download these helpful materials, and read on to learn about tips for a healthy pregnancy.

Visit Your Doctor Regularly 

It is important to start prenatal care as soon as you think you are pregnant and to visit your obstetrician regularly throughout your pregnancy. This doctor will measure the baby’s growth and position and will make sure everything is progressing as it should. In addition to monitoring your pregnancy, your obstetrician will also check for congenital anomalies or potential complications, treat any health conditions that could affect your baby, manage your labor and delivery, and provide postpartum care for up to six weeks after childbirth, as detailed by the Cleveland Clinic

Take Folic Acid Before and During Pregnancy

Folic acid is a B vitamin that can help prevent serious neural tube defects like anencephaly and spina bifida, when taken before and during pregnancy. If you are pregnant or trying to conceive, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends taking 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day. In addition to supplements, folic acid can be found in fortified foods (as noted on the product’s nutrition fact label) and foods that are naturally rich in folate. To learn more about folic acid, click here.

Do What You Can to Prevent Birth Defects

One in 33 newborns is diagnosed with a birth defect each year, according to the National Institutes of Health. Some causes, like genetic issues and chromosomal abnormalities, are beyond your control, but there are steps you could take to lower your risk otherwise. Avoid alcohol and smoking, as well as marijuana and other drugs. Watch your weight, and if you are diabetic, make sure your condition is controlled. Also, limit your exposure to infections, harmful radiation and chemicals, and medicines that are unsafe during pregnancy.

Eat a Healthy Diet

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, “Making smart food choices can help you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.” While it may be tempting to give in to those pregnancy cravings for junk food, eating for two means that you will need more of certain nutrients found in fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean proteins and dairy, and healthy fats. It also means that your calorie needs will change throughout your pregnancy. For advice on how to follow a healthy eating routine during pregnancy, and to gain a healthy amount of weight, click here

Visit our website to learn more about The Alliance for Health Equity, including how you can help us shape a stronger, healthier Coatesville community. And congratulations on your beautiful new beginning!

The Alliance for Health Equity (formerly Brandywine Health Foundation) is a philanthropic organization striving to advance a more equitable, resilient and healthy community for all residents of the Greater Coatesville area. We pursue our mission by providing grants and scholarships to local nonprofits and students that address health and economic disparities and social justice. We also build partnership programs and give voice to those often left out of community solution building to improve the overall health of their communities. 100% of contributions go directly to those in need.