God's interest in the human race is nowhere better evinced than in obstetrics. ~ Martin H. Fischer
Pregnancy is a significant period in a woman's life, marking her momentous journey into motherhood. During the dynamic 9 months of her pregnancy, immense changes take place in her mind and body, as the fetus takes shape into a full-grown baby.
It is also a highly vulnerable time for women due to changes in the level of hormones. As much as she is filled with hope and anticipation, she often experiences phases of doubt, fear and anxiety about the future. This is a time when women need all the love, support and care from their partner and family to have a healthy pregnancy.
Backed by years of research, nutritious food, rest and exercise are vital for expectant women. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), it is important for pregnant women who are free from any form of obstetric complications to engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise, 5-6 days a week.
The benefit of exercise during pregnancy reflects in better health of the mother as well as the baby, research has shown.
On the contrary, the risks of sedentary lifestyle for pregnant women are far too many. Lack of exercise in expectant women could result in:
- Reduction of muscular and cardiovascular fitness
- Excessive weight gain
- Increased risk of gestational diabetes
- Enhanced risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension
- Back pain
- Poor emotional adjustment to pregnancy associated changes
- Increased risk of varicose veins
- High risk of deep vein thrombosis