Ashley’s Story

Ashley is currently 18 weeks pregnant.  She is almost half-way!

Ashley is a contest winner who won my ‘Biggest Contest Ever’.  This means that for the remainder of her pregnancy I will be working closely with her on the nutrition needs of herself and her baby.  She has agreed to allow me to post it here, on my blog. Closeup on tummy of pregnant woman, wearing long green dress, ho

To read Ashley’s full story, CLICK HERE.

*Every individual is unique and will have different nutritional needs. The recommendations I make for Ashley may or may not benefit other women who have similar experiences. The nutritional advice given to Ashley is based on a specific, detailed health and lifestyle assessment. They will not apply to every woman. If you are interested in a personal assessment for yourself, please send an e-mail to karen@natureprenatal.com.

Ashley’s assessments and recommendations are much more detailed than what is in this blog post. Here, I am sharing her most important issues and some random topics. The information that is shared between us is extensive and continual.

Last month I wrote about ingredient lists.  Specifically food ingredient lists.  It’s important to know what is in the food you eat.  This month Ashley has asked about sunscreen (yes, she took a trip down south and had a fabulous time!) and belly cream.  You probably know that you can use creams and oils to reduce the appearance of stretch marks.  There is no guarantee, of course, and sometimes stretch marks come no matter how much we try to avoid them.  I do recommend using creams and oils on your belly (and breasts) during pregnancy.  Not only will they possibly prevent stretch marks, but they provide added moisture, which is never a bad thing.  Speaking of moisture, it is important to drink enough water.  This is my biggest piece of advice to improve anyone’s skin, pregnant or not.  When it comes to creams, lotions and oils, read their ingredient lists as well before you purchase anything.  Especially during pregnancy.  These ingredients can be absorbed through your skin and into your bloodstream.  Yes, it requires a bit of homework to determine what’s safe, but it’s worth it.  The Environmental Working Group tests a lot of these products and gives them a rating.  Go to their website here and see how your products measure up (not only for belly creams, but cosmetics, seafood, fruits and vegetables, water and more).

According to the Environmental Working Group, Personal care products are manufactured with 10,500 unique chemical ingredients, some of which are known or suspected carcinogens, toxic to the reproductive system or known to disrupt the endocrine system. Though some companies make products that are safe to eat, others choose to use dangerous ingredients like coal tar and formaldehyde, both human carcinogens, and lead acetate, a developmental toxin.”   (Source)

One more option to consider is olive oil or coconut oil.  These may also be used topically during pregnancy or even for conditions like dry skin and eczema.

If you would like to share your own experience with a product you have used during pregnancy, please leave a comment.

As for Ashley’s pregnancy, all is well.  She has started to feel movement with tiny kicks and jabs.  This is (I feel) the best pregnancy symptom!  The baby is still small enough that it is not too uncomfortable, and those reassuring movements are enough to melt your heart.

If you read the last update on Ashley, you will know that she has had concerns about leg cramps.  So far she has felt a few, but they have been mild compared to what she experienced with her previous pregnancy.  I mentioned last week that water intake is important to prevent leg cramps (again with the water!)  I will say it again.  During pregnancy you should drink about 3 litres of water per day.

If you would like to be notified when I post my next update on Ashley, you can sign up for my e-mail list HERE. To thank you for signing up, I will send you my free offer, “You and Your Baby: 7 Simple Steps to Achieving a Healthy Pregnancy and Happy Baby.”