During pregnancy, treating common health issues such as high cholesterol becomes tricky. Currently, there are no medications for treating high cholesterol approved for the use of pregnant women. This leaves you with two options for treating your high cholesterol during the 9 months of your pregnancy--diet and exercise.
Treat High Cholesterol Through Diet and Exercise
Ask your doctor for a referral to a nutritionist who specializes in working with pregnant women. Since pregnancy requires you to consume more calories and avoid certain foods, it is important to seek the advice of a nutrition expert before trying to treat your high cholesterol through your diet.
Talk to your nutritionist about introducing more fiber into your diet. Both soluble and insoluble fiber have been shown to help reduce cholesterol in most patients and can be found in foods that are appropriate for a pregnant woman's diet, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains such as oatmeal.
Find out whether a reduction in the amount of fat you eat is advisable during your pregnancy. Your nutritionist may advise you to consume a certain amount of fat each day for the neurological health of your baby but might instruct you to seek out healthier sources for it such as the monounsaturated fats found in olive oil or avocados.
Discuss exercise options with your doctor. If you have been exercising consistently before your pregnancy, you should be able to continue exercising throughout most of your pregnancy. However, your doctor may advise you against engaging in high-impact aerobics, which may put too much stress on your heart.
Check out your local gym for low-impact cardio machines such as elliptical treadmills and stationary bikes. These machines allow you to increase your heart rate to an acceptable level without putting additional strain on your joints or back.
Treat yourself to lots of water after exercising and throughout the day. By avoiding sugary or caffeinated beverages, you can keep your triglycerides down during pregnancy--an important factor in maintaining a low cholesterol level.
Accept that most doctors do not worry too much about high cholesterol in pregnant women. Most do not believe that 9 months of untreated high cholesterol presents a high risk to the overall health of their pregnant patients.
You should not make radical changes to your diet or exercise regimen during pregnancy unless specifically instructed to do so by your Doctor. You may put your life or child's life at risk by consuming too few calories or engaging in intense exercise.
I hope I have been of help and I hope your baby is born very healthy.
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