Taking care of your health during pregnancy is essential, and your diet can play a big part. Did you know that eating meat for example, can increase the risk of hypertensive disorders?
According to a recent study, plant-based diets are the key to staying healthy during pregnancy. By cutting back on meat, you can reduce the risk of disorders like chronic hypertension, preeclampsia, and gestational hypertension.
Let’s explore what the recent study found, how your diet influences the pregnancy, and how you can treat hypertensive disorders if they occur.
Research shows plant based diets reduce risk of hypertensive disorders
The recent study, featured in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, observed the diets of 11,459 pregnant women over the course of nearly two decades.
It found the women who consumed plant-based foods and reduced animal products in their diet, had a lower risk of developing hypertensive disorders. Those fully embracing a plant-based diet had a 24% reduced risk of hypertension and preeclampsia.
Quality plant-based diets provide excellent health benefits, not just for expectant mothers but also for older adults. However, if you do make the switch during pregnancy, ensure that you are still receiving all the nutrients you and your baby need.
How diet influences pregnancy
What you choose to consume doesn’t just impact your overall well-being, it also influences your pregnancy. Diet plays an integral role in providing essential nutrients that support foetal development and maternal health.
The right diet can regulate hormonal balances, stabilise blood sugar, and help manage weight gain. A balanced diet, rich in vitamins and minerals, helps to support your growing baby and ensures that the body can handle the demands of pregnancy.
Opting for a predominantly plant-based diet can further increase these benefits. It often leads to a reduced intake of saturated fats and additives, while boosting the consumption of fibre and essential nutrients.
Treating hypertensive disorders in pregnancy
Hypertensive disorders during pregnancy, including conditions like preeclampsia, require immediate attention. If left unmanaged, they can become incredibly serious, even increasing the risk of mortality.
Effective management helps to ensure the safety of both mother and child. Treatment options depend on the severity and type of hypertension, but they generally involve close monitoring, prescribed and safe blood pressure medication and low-dose aspirin.
Dietary adjustments, following activity guidelines, and more regular prenatal visits may also be part of the treatment plan. Remember, while diet plays a preventative role, you can still develop hypertension during pregnancy.
If you have high blood pressure and are planning a family, schedule an appointment with Dr Konrad Grosser. He can help assess how you are managing your condition and can recommend treatment changes before you get pregnant.