Sticking to a fitness regime may be the last thing you feel like doing when you’re pregnant, but it could make a world of difference to your baby’s health
Exercising while pregnant may actually make your baby grow up to be healthier, a new study reveals. Your workout is thought to boost your baby’s vascular system and lower the risk of her having heart attacks or strokes later in life.
The effects of exercise were tested on pigs, which have been shown to have similar biological response to humans. The scientists from California State University and the University of Greifswald in Germany exercised the pigs on treadmills for 20 and 45 minute intervals, five days a week, for the majority of each pig’s pregnancy. And the results found that the exercise had improved the function of the piglet’s vascular smooth muscle.
This improved vascular function could lower the chance of your baby developing cardiovascular diseases well into her adult years.
‘We are only starting to understand how exercise during gestation influences adult offspring and disease. Results like ours may help to create guidelines enabling women to make the best decisions for them and their children by providing evidence-based health choices,’ says the lead researchers Dr Sean Newcomer and Dr Martin Bahls.
If you’re worried about harming yourself or your baby by exercising when pregnant, then as long as you alter your work out regime to include safe and gentle exercises then it’s actually better for your baby.
Aim to do around 30 minutes of exercise most days – walking, jogging or yoga are all ideal and has the double benefit of keeping you fit for the gruelling nature of labour.
What’s your pregnancy exercise routine? Let us know below.