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12

Ayurvedic Fitness Advice to Prepare Your Body for Pregnancy

The journey to motherhood can be one of the most cherished experiences for every woman.

The subject of safe, healthy and happy motherhood depends on numerous factors and one of them is physical well-being. During pregnancy, the female’s body has to accept as well as support several changes that take place in the body. Ayurveda considers the period before pregnancy (pre-conception) very crucial for preparing the body for bearing as well as supporting the foetus.

Ayurveda recommends certain fitness guidelines which provide potential health benefits as well as prepare the mind and soul for the life-altering journey ahead. Following this advice will benefit the women preparing for conception as well sustain the foetus post-conception.

Yoga

Studies have shown that practising Yoga increases fertility. Fertility and stress are intricately linked. When the body is under stress, fertility takes a hit, likewise a relaxed, healthy body is more likely to produce fertility hormones and improve the quality of reproductive fluids. Specific yogic postures are very beneficial in improving the supply of blood to the pelvic region and stimulate hormonal glands and boost fertility. Hastapadasana, Janu Shirasana, Badhakonasana and Viparita Karani are a few very useful yoga asanas which promote production of sex hormones and reduce stress by lowering thecortisol levels. This aids in successful conception for the couple.

Pranayama

Our bodies need oxygen to carry out all essential functions. The human brain consumes 20% of the total oxygen we breathe. In the absence of oxygen, the process of cellular respiration and several other key processes cannot take place properly.

Breathing techniques are a great way to relax and connect deeply with your inner self. Anulom-Vilom is a meditation technique that cleanses the respiratory system and the nasal passages. It removes the spasm in bronchial tubes.

Clean Environment

Numerous tests done on new-borns have produced shocking evidence of toxins present in the umbilical cord. These toxins are absorbed by the mother and passed down to her baby via the cord (EWG, 2005). Over 287 chemicals were found in the tests which highlights the severity of problem. These toxins are known to cause damage to the brain cells of the foetus, impede normal growth and lead to birth defects and complications. Simple ways to minimize toxic exposure is to be more careful about the environment you are in. Do not smoke or be in the vicinity of another smoker. Choose BPA free containers. Plastic bottles and canned food have this chemical and can alter the function of estrogen hormone (Stephen Musson, 2016). Use natural, chemical-free beauty products such as shampoos or face creams. Chemicals can percolate through the skin and enter your body. Keep distance from the chemical sources and stay in a clean environment. Use air-filters to reduce the pollution levels within your home.

Balanced Lifestyle

A core premise of Ayurveda is ‘balance’. Diseases and lifestyle disorders all sprout from imbalance of the three doshas viz: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These are thrown out of semblance either because of wrong dietary decisions or lifestyle choices. Anything in excess is bad, so even things that are prescribed or suggested for health benefits can cause problems. For instance, if you work out at a gym, do not stress yourself beyond your natural limits. Ayurveda advises working out to 40-50% of your physical strength to prevent exhaustion or long-term damage to your body. Consuming supplements is also another topic that you must approach carefully since these are synthesized from chemicals. Instead, follow a balanced diet to meet your normal dietary requirements, taking supplements only where explicitly recommended.

Active Daily Routine

In the presence of modern comforts (cars, household help, assistants, delivery services), people in urban locations have forgotten the value of leading an active lifestyle or misinterpreted it completely. Staying mostly sedentary for the better part of the week and running 5 miles on weekends isn’t ideally ‘leading an active life’. What you should do instead is stretch your leg and get your groceries from the market, take the stairs more often, consider swimming or cycling in the weekends and become less dependent on others for your needs. Find ways to incorporate physical activities into your daily professional and social commitments.

Warning: Strenuous exercises & carrying heavy loads should be avoided, especially if you are planning for conception. Engage in light exercises that do not strain or exhaust you.

With Jiva AyurBaby , you don’t just get personalized medicines, your health coach will help you design a physical regimen suitable for you. What’s more, this will incorporate the best of knowledge from Yoga to complement other exercises that you may engage in. All physical exercise counsel is personalised and designed specifically for the couple’s body constitutions and unique prakritis.