Any mother who carried a baby will tell you that pregnancy is WARM work! Whenever I see a pregnant mama sweating through the summer, I acutely remember the unique type of stifling heat I felt immersed in at all times during my own summer pregnancy.
During pregnancy, our baseline body temperature increases. Our blood volume nearly doubles, creating more heat. To accommodate all this extra blood, our blood vessels dilate slightly, bringing blood closer to the surface of the skin. Our resting heart rate increases. We become warmer within.
But we also carry the added weight of all this blood, amniotic fluid, and our growing child. So any physical activity we do causes our bodies to work harder and produce more heat.
Ayurveda tells us that pregnancy is a time when our “pitta dosha” takes over, and pitta is ruled by warmth. But it can be tempered through lifestyle and diet modifications!
If “keeping cool” is a daily on your pregnancy to-do list this summer, here are MotherBees favorite cooling and refreshing tips to help!
Try these tips to stay calm, cool, and collected:
Keep shaded when outdoors, using hats, umbrellas, or trees.
Always carry a water bottle to stay properly hydrated (try adding citrus juice, fruit slices, or fresh herbs to make it more palatable and exciting to drink)
Take lukewarm baths (keep the temp under 100)
Keep your skin loosely covered, with cottons, linens, or other natural, breathable fabrics
Do slow, long stretches and gentle yoga for exercise
Try guided meditations or deep breathing to slow your heart rate and cool your systems
Keep a buckwheat neck wrap in the freezer for when you need fast relief
Foods for cooling from the inside out:
- Grains (including rice, barley, oats)
- Sweet, fresh fruits (melons, cherries, figs, oranges, pears, plums, berries)
- Steamed root vegetables (sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips)
- Coconut (includes coconut meat, coconut milk, and coconut water)
- Dairy (includes whole milk and ghee)
- Fennel (both the seeds and the bulb)
- Leafy greens
- Tea: black, chicory, dandelion, or mint (room temperature or cool)
- Bitter fruits (ripe grapefruit, green apple)
- Green vegetables (asparagus, green beans, summer squash, zucchini, cucumbers)
- Fresh herbs (especially cilantro)
- Fruits (apple, banana, pomegranate, skin of most fruit)
- Raw vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, celery)
- Sunflower oil
- Olive oil
Stay cool, mama! You've got this.