5 Things You Should be Doing BEFORE You Get Pregnant

First comes love… then comes marriage… then… ideally comes family planning BEFORE the baby carriage? F and I were so blessed to find out we were expecting B, but I’m not going to lie… we were also surprised! We had just decided to hold off one more year before getting pregnant – funny how that works, right? We were nevertheless THRILLED and I couldn’t wait to hold that baby [and he’s just the squishiest, loviest baby I know and I’m MORE than obsessed]! These days, there are so many apps and aids for trying to get pregnant, but what about those of us who know it’s in our future, but aren’t QUITE trying yet? Are there things you should be doing before you get pregnant? Are there any steps you can take to best be prepared for that adventure to come?

Having a baby [the pregnancy, labor and delivery], is no walk in the park. Baby B is two and a half and I’m just now starting to really want to go through the process again. We’re almost ready to start trying for baby number 2 so I’m about to be in the throes of family planning. Most women know that when they’re ready, they’ll start tracking their cycle [which, by the way is just good to go ahead and be doing anyways] but what many women don’t know is that there are steps you can take to prepare your body for the entire experience BEFORE you start trying to conceive. Here are five things you should be doing BEFORE you get pregnant:

1. Start eating healthy

Studies show that women who maintain a well-balanced diet are less likely to experience conditions of infertility, as general health is a large component of fertility health. It’s not a guarantee, but if it helps your chances of getting pregnant when you’re ready to start trying, then it’s a good idea to start taking care of your body’s nutritional needs before there’s a baby inside of it!

Make sure you’re getting a good amount of vegetables [especially leafy greens, like spinach] and protein every day! Just as important as good food [maybe even more important] is your water intake! Make sure you’re well hydrated every day!

2. Get started on a workout regimen

Getting enough exercise is a crucial part of early pregnancy, so it’s important to be active before you conceive in order to keep your body strong. Plus, studies now show that it’s important to be active during pregnancy, but you’re never supposed to start a new fitness activity for the first time once you become pregnant. For example, if you’re a runner before getting pregnant, keep on running during your pregnancy. Just don’t decide that pregnancy is a good time to start training for a marathon if you weren’t a runner before… bad idea.

All of this is to say that it’s important to take care of your body before conceiving or even trying to conceive. Start focusing on your fitness levels and take care of your body. It’s important.

3. Start taking prenatal vitamins

Even if you’re not trying to get pregnant yet, but you’re practicing, it’s important to remember that you still could wake up to a big surprise positive pregnancy test one morning!  Prenatal vitamins are chalk-full of the daily vitamins YOUR body needs, but they also have ingredients like DHA and Folic Acid, which is essential in the first weeks of pregnancy. Your body needs folate [or folic acid] to help it build new cells, and is especially vital for early pregnancy as the baby’s neural tube [aka what is going to be the brain] closes.*

These vitamins are just good to be on in general. So don’t feel like you’re jumping the gun by getting on these before even trying to get pregnant. It’s just an extra step to make sure your body is full of the good stuff for whatever may happen! Ideally, you’ll have prenatal vitamins in your system BEFORE you conceive, but if you don’t, just make sure you start those vitamins as soon as you find out you’re pregnant!

I personally like the Prenatal Gels with DHA from NOW Foods. I know that I can trust the ingredients that NOW uses, so I’m putting vitamins that have been sourced well into my system. Even though we’re not quite trying for baby number 2 yet, I sleep better knowing that if we have a sweet surprise, I’ve been filling my system with a good prenatal. I know that my doctor will probably prescribe a heavy-duty prenatal for me once I’m pregnant, but my NOW Prenatal Gels with DHA is doing the trick for now!

4. Visit your OB-Gyn

Find a doctor you trust BEFORE you decide to try and have a baby. Once you’ve found that doctor, talk to him/her about your plans and gain their advice first. Your doctor will play a VERY important role throughout your pregnancy and delivery, so make sure you feel comfortable with your doctor before deciding you want to go through such an intimate experience with them! When you tell your doctor you’re ready to start trying to conceive, they’ll be able to check you out and give you a personalized game plan for your family planning, catered to your body, health and needs.

5. Put your lady-part health first

Thinking about trying to get pregnant soon? One thing you should be focusing on is your lady-part health. Make sure you’re supporting your urinary tract, gut health and flora balance, just to get it all nice and ready for the craziness that pregnancy brings.* Here’s how:

Support your Urinary Tract* – Drink water. Lots and lots of water. Water is essential in supporting your kidneys and urinary tract, which are pretty important before during and after pregnancy. I like to support my urinary tract with Cranberry Mannose.* This brand of Cranberry Mannose from NOW Foods is paired with probiotics and is in a powder form, so you can put it inside a glass of water and drink it!

Support your Vaginal Tract and Gut* – Take a probiotic to support a healthy gut.* I’ve started taking NOW Foods Women’s Probiotic daily. Now only does is support your gut, it is specifically formulated with three strains of probiotics to support women’s health.* One of those strains specifically supports the vaginal tract by maintaining a healthy pH balance down there!* Probiotics are good for helping you get things moving [in the intestines] and keep you regular.* Pregnancy changes all of these things, so it’s best to support them all as much as possible before your even try to get pregnant!

These 5 things you should be doing BEFORE you get pregnant are great steps to take to prepare your body for what’s to come BEFORE you begin trying to get pregnant. If having a baby is something you’re planning for in your future, these steps should be ones you are taking NOW. However, these 5 things you should be doing BEFORE you get pregnant – the prenatal vitamins, supplements and tips and tricks listed here by no means guarantee that you’ll conceive easily or that you’ll have a healthy pregnancy, they are just great steps to take to help you support your body for the crazy process of trying to conceive, being pregnant and having a baby.*

NOW Foods and I partner together often. They sponsored this post. However, I actually take these vitamins and supplements I mentioned here and I stand behind their brand. It’s important to know that I don’t work with brands that I do not believe in!

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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