Ayurveda For Pregnancy Self-Care
Bringing a new life into the world is just as exhausting as it is beautiful. The journey from conception to delivery is full of ups and downs that can be overwhelming at times. But Ayurveda has specific recommendations to keep you healthy – mentally and physically – from preconception to postpartum.
Ayurveda for pregnancy can be used to complement conventional prenatal care and make it more holistic, accounting for not only the physiological changes of pregnancy but also the state of your dosha. If these aspects aren’t brought into balance, they can contribute to discomfort and even illness throughout your journey.
Ayurveda recognizes the spiritual significance of pregnancy for the mom-to-be. During this time, self-care should be a priority. Ayurveda’s holistic approach considers mental and emotional health in relation to your physical surroundings.
Your happiness, emotional security, physical health, and spiritual importance are equally important. Let’s explore how Ayurveda can make pregnancy easier and how it can be used for self-care at every stage of pregnancy- from preconception thru birth and post-delivery.
Ayurveda for Pregnancy Can Be Used In Every Stage of Pregnancy
According to Ayurvedic principles, healthy reproduction is determined by four factors: choosing the right time for conception, the health of the mother, proper nutrition, and the health of the ovum and sperm.
These four factors form the basis of a practice called Garbh Sanskar, which includes cleansing and detoxifying the body and womb, improving female physical health through proper nutrition, boosting the male’s sperm count and quality, and removing any imbalances from the mother-to-be’s dosha.
This process should begin at least three months before conception. Herbs are used to support cleansing and detoxification and proper diet and nutrition are used to support overall health. Practices like yoga and meditation are also incorporated for mind/body balance and emotional health, and offer healthy benefits of Ayurveda for pregnancy.
● During Pregnancy
Ayurveda believes that food cravings are the result of nutritional deficiencies, so following a healthy diet and taking organic prenatal vitamins are a top priority. Listening to your cravings can tell you what your body needs, and they should never be ignored.
An Ayurvedic pregnancy diet should be wholesome and satisfying, as well as nutritious. Ayurveda for pregnancy includes a wide variety of foods, such as:
- Whole grains
- Cooked pulses
- Leafy greens
- Roots and tubers
- Dried fruits and nuts
- Fresh seasonal fruits
- Milk products that are enriched with vitamin D
- Avoid refined sugar and refined salt
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol
Expectant moms should avoid stressful situations or big changes during pregnancy because these things can affect the mental and physical health of both mother and fetus. Relax, meditate, read, listen to soothing music, and surround yourself with positive energy.
Including Ayurveda for pregnancy through regular self-massage reduces any swelling in the body and promotes good circulation. Using gently warmed sesame oil, gently massage all parts of your body every day. This will also help with stress reduction and reduce fatigue at a time when the body is changing radically.
● Postpartum Ayurvedic Self-Care
We can all agree that giving birth is exhausting, both mentally and physically. The mother’s body needs nourishment and rest to recover and promote lactation. Even though the baby is now a separate being, it is still completely dependent on its mother for nourishment.
It’s important for the mother to consume plenty of healthy fats during this time, along with wholesome, easy-to-digest foods. Regular massage can benefit both mother and baby. Avoiding toxins, viruses, and bacteria is important because the baby’s immune system is still developing.
Nurturing the mother’s mental health during this time is crucial. Gentle yoga and meditation should be a daily practice.
5 Ways Ayurveda Can Support the Pregnancy Journey
The ancient science of Ayurveda puts you in the driver’s seat of your own health and healing. As a mother-to-be, the principles of Ayurveda for pregnancy make you easier by supporting your mental and physical health at every stage.
● Lower Your Risk of Pregnancy Complications
Following an Ayurveda for pregnancy in lfestyle promotes overall health, which can lower your risk of pregnancy complications. Morning sickness, gestational diabetes, and pregnancy-induced hypertension are just a few issues that are common during pregnancy, even in healthy women.
Under the best of circumstances, a woman’s body goes through dramatic changes during pregnancy. But in these modern times, many women fail to honor and nurture their bodies and provide the support that is so vital during this time.
Ayurveda for pregnancy teaches you how important it is to find balance during pregnancy, as well as what influences it. Once you learn to recognize the things that throw your mind and body out of balance, such as stress on the mind and body, you can learn how to make positive changes.
One way to achieve this is to pay attention to your digestive health and any digestive discomforts you are experiencing. Paying attention to this can help you understand when your body is off balance and what might be affecting it.
● Manage Stress
Ayurveda for pregnancy promotes many different ways to manage stress. When it comes to pregnancy, stress is addressed by working with your senses of touch, sound, taste, smell, and sight. Practicing Ayurvedic principles daily can help you transform stress into calmness, happiness, and strength.
During pregnancy, stress can influence your growing baby. Not only that, but stress can contribute to illness and possibly even lead to pregnancy complications. Stress affects hormone levels and bodily functions, including digestion. So the Ayurveda for pregnancy works well to reduce such problem.
Ayurvedic practices lie meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises also help prepare the mind and body for the stress of labor and birth. They teach you to observe your thoughts, recognizing and changing negative thoughts into positive ones.
One way to practice this technique is to simply meditate for a few minutes every day. Pay attention to your breath and your body. By syncing the two, you can calm your nervous system. By lowering your stress level, you are supporting your body’s ability to nourish itself.
● Customize Your Food Choices to Improve Digestion
Ayurveda for pregnancy provides customized food guidelines for every month of pregnancy. It outlines which types of foods will be most beneficial to you and your baby at each stage. Using these guidelines not only improves your health but also supports good digestion and nutrition, which is essential for your baby’s development.
That’s because digestion is basically the body’s engine. Digestion allows the body to turn food into energy and nourishment for our organs and tissues.
One of the easiest ways to support digestion is to replace the cold foods and drinks in your diet with warm ones. This can aid your body during pregnancy because it doesn’t have to work as hard to break down the food. It also helps create a comforting sense of warmth within the body.
● Prepare for Labor and Delivery
Ayurvedic techniques promote the smooth downward motion of the baby through the birth canal. They also help to soften the tissues and redirect energy to where it’s needed most for birth. Ayurveda also encourages the body to work in unison during labor and delivery.
So, how do you prepare for labor and delivery? How do you strengthen the connection between your mind and body to allow them to work together during childbirth? Yoga and meditation are both excellent for helping your body relax and surrender to labor and delivery.
Oil-self massage is also highly recommended in Ayurveda for pregnancy. It is a simple act of self-love that can not only ease pregnancy aches and pains but also support the connection between your mind and body, which is essential during birth.
● Prepare for Postpartum Recovery
Incorporating Practice of Ayurveda for pregnancy into your daily routine during pregnancy can help build strength and speed recovery postpartum. They help to mitigate some of the draining mental and physical effects labor and delivery have on the mother, as well as rebalance the hormones after birth.
The level of corticotropin-releasing hormone drops off dramatically at the beginning of the postpartum period. This is a molecule that helps the body cope with stress. But the demands on the body postpartum are great, not only for healing oneself but also for nurturing a growing baby.
This sudden drop in hormones, along with the physical and mental strain, can result in an imbalance of energies that leads to common postpartum issues like digestive problems, depression, anxiety, and low milk supply. Ayurveda for pregnancy aims to rebalance these energies and promote feelings of calm, boost energy levels, support digestion, and increase milk supply.
Taking good care of your body during pregnancy helps it prepare for postpartum recovery. Ayurveda also puts a priority on nourishing yourself and your baby during this time. Rest when your baby rests, eat a nutritious diet, and take steps to keep stress levels to a minimum.
Wrapping Things Up
As an expecting mother, you can use the principles of Ayurveda for pregnancy to care for yourself from preconception, throughout your pregnancy, and even during the critical postpartum recovery period. Incorporating proper diet and nutrition with stress-relieving practices like yoga, meditation, and self-massage can make your pregnancy journey easier while promoting overall health for you and your baby.