Did you know it is crucial to stay hydrated throughout your pregnancy? For many reasons, you need to ensure that you consume enough water in order to support the expansion of your blood volume. Staying hydrated will also help with the renewal of amniotic fluid, kidney and liver function, breast milk production, and much more.

Choose Liquids Wisely

A big part of the battle with staying hydrated while pregnant comes down to choosing your liquids wisely. Even though you may not enjoy drinking the recommended six, eight-ounce glasses of water per day, it should be done. However, you can breathe a sigh of relief because there are other drinks that can count towards your fluid intake, but there are some fluids that you should avoid altogether. Some of the best beverages that count towards your fluid intake – aside from water – include fruit juices and soy milk.

When you drink beverages full of sugar and caffeine, they will dehydrate your body. These drinks do not count towards your daily fluid intake, and they actually work against your body; therefore, these types of beverages should be avoided during your pregnancy. If you decide to drink these beverages, keep in mind that they have empty calories, so you will need to limit the amounts that you drink.

What are the Benefits?

Now that you know it is important to stay hydrated throughout your pregnancy, you may be wondering what the benefits are. The top benefit is preventing various pregnancy conditions from getting worse due to dehydration. Some of the conditions that could potentially be worsened due to dehydration are:

• Skin problems
• Nausea
• Swelling
• Bladder infections
• Constipation
• Braxton Hicks contractions
• Hemorrhoids

Increasing Fluid Intake

It is important to increase your fluid intake when you exercise. For every hour of exercise that you complete, you will need to drink an additional eight-ounce glass of water (or any other non-sugary or non-caffeinated fluid). This includes light exercises, such as walking or swimming. On warm days, your thirst may increase, which is why you should increase your fluid intake to cool your body down.

Keep Track of your Fluid Intake

Many people do not keep an accurate track of their fluid intake while pregnant, but you should. If you do not feel up to logging your fluid intake in a traditional journal, or through an app on your Smartphone, you can do so visually. Buy a 2.5-liter jug and fill it with water, daily. Try to drink all of the fluid inside of the jug each day. This is easier to do, in comparison to keeping track of how many glasses of water you have consumed for the day. Regardless if you keep a journal (log), or use the jug method, it is important that you keep an accurate count of your fluid intake in order to hit your target and remain hydrated.