When making your checklist, learning how to navigate pregnancy during the holidays may be at the top of your list. Depending on what trimester you are in, your holiday may look different from years prior. Whether it is your first child or a new sibling, this will be the last holiday of your family as it is now. Soak up those final memories and traditions before you initiate new ones next year.
At City of Oaks Midwifery, our goal is to provide holistic, wellness care to women through all stages of life, including pregnancy. Growing new life inside of you is a large adjustment on its own. You’ll want to find a way to fit your pregnancy routine into celebrating the holidays. Most importantly, we want you to be your healthiest self at every stage of pregnancy. Here are our tips on staying healthy and, of course, enjoying yourself this holiday season while pregnant.
How to Navigate Pregnancy During the Holidays
1. Stick to your diet (for the most part)
Just because the holidays have arrived does not mean the pregnancy rules have gone out the window. The same pregnancy nutrition guidelines remain true even with all the delicious holiday foods on the table. However, that does not mean you’re unable to indulge at all. When learning which foods and drinks to avoid while pregnant, raw meats and unpasteurized foods are among the top items to remove from your diet. Therefore, be mindful of holiday recipes, especially ones that are homemade. If there is any risk of bacteria from raw ingredients, it’s best to avoid them altogether. Here is a list of holiday foods to stay away from:
- If prepared inside of the turkey, do not consume the stuffing.
- Avoid charcuterie boards that include unpasteurized soft cheeses or deli meats containing preservatives.
- Raw meats or raw seafood. Cooked seafood with low mercury levels is okay in limited quanities.
Fortunately, some holiday favorites are pregnancy-safe. Turkey, brisket, ham, or whichever meat of preference is fine to consume as long as properly cooked through. Be sure to use a meat thermometer to ensure the meat reaches the correct temperature.
2. Stay home if possible
If you’re in your first or second trimester, traveling may not be off the table for you. However, if your due date is fast approaching, make the holidays come to you this year. Most airlines do not allow domestic travel after 36 weeks or international flights after 28 weeks. Therefore, far travel is certainly out of the question for those well into their third trimester. If your holiday destination is accessible by car, and you are comfortable with traveling, be sure to have your latest prenatal documents with you, your midwife’s contact information, as well as all your pregnancy essentials to make the road trip and stay go smoothly.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
If there’s ever been a year to skip being the hostess, this may be it. A lot of work and preparation goes into holiday celebrations, and your body may not be able to perform like it is used to. Ask family and friends for help when cooking, gift wrapping, decorating, etc. It’s more enjoyable to take on those activities with others anyway. Having loved ones lend you a helping hand will put you in the holiday spirit and alleviate some of the stress with holiday planning.
4. Get some rest, and enjoy!
This is a time to celebrate with your loved ones and enjoy the final moments before the baby arrives. Once the new child is here, there will be little time to lie down and kick your feet up. Use the holidays as a time to enjoy and relax with people you love. There is so much excitement and anticipation in the air; you’ll want to document and create memories to look back on one day. Snap family photos, record videos, and enjoy the last year of traditions with life as you know it.
Consult with a Midwife
Anything is possible with proper planning, including navigating pregnancy during the holidays. Being pregnant this time of year does not mean you have to miss out on your favorite holiday traditions. Some adjustments may have to be made, but overall, being pregnant and surrounded by all your loved ones may make the holidays even more special. For further guidance on being pregnant this time of year, give us a call at (919)-351-8253.