Exercises during pregnancy that you should do for better immunity

Prenatal exercises are well known to have their set of benefits for women in all trimesters during pregnancy. Regular exercise creates a healthy environment and a positive impact for the expectant mother. Research has shown that moderate exercise three to four times a week, lasting 30 to 45 minutes, significantly improves a variety of body functions. And so, you should indulge in exercises during pregnancy.

Some benefits of exercises during pregnancy are:

* Improves blood circulation
* Increases vital lung capacity
* Reduces the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol
* Regulates digestive function
* Reduces insomnia
* Improves sleep pattern and sleep quality.
* Reduces pain
* Increase flexibility and strength
* Improves mental health and physical well-being

In addition to these benefits of exercising during pregnancy, it helps improve our immune response to various infections.

Exercise increases blood and lymph flow as your muscles work. It also increases the circulation of immune cells, causing them to circulate at a higher rate and in greater numbers. This is how it can improve our immune response, reduce the risk of disease and reduce inflammation.

exercises during pregnancyEven a basic 30-45 minute walk can help. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

3 exercises during pregnancy for better immunity

1. Relaxation and flexibility exercises

Breathing exercises, meditation, stretching exercises, and yoga are great during this time. Deep breathing exercises and flexibility exercises lower blood pressure, clear mucus from the respiratory tract, improve posture, reduce stress, reduce fatigue, and improve overall health.

How to do it:
Diaphragmatic breathing helps expand the lungs and increases oxygen uptake.

* Can be performed in a sitting or supine position
* Place one hand on your upper chest and the other hand just below your rib cage.
* Inhale slowly through the nose so that the belly moves out.
* Breathe out slowly through your mouth

breathing exercises during pregnancyBreathing well is important for your well-being. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Aerobic exercise or cardiovascular exercises

These use oxygen which helps reduce weight and also strengthen our heart by improving cardiovascular function, which in turn increases endurance. Aerobic exercise can also lower cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood sugar.

Brisk walking activates the immune cells to work efficiently and the antibodies circulate more quickly. Walking is simple, easy and one of the best exercises during pregnancy.

Start with a 10-minute slow walk to warm up your muscles, prepare your body for a 15-30 minute brisk walk, and at the end of the walk, cool down with a 10-minute slow walk. Aerobic exercises such as swimming, cycling, dancing, and gardening are examples of moderate aerobic activities and are recommended 3 to 5 days a week.

importance of exercise during pregnancyNot exercising enough and exercising correctly can lead to aches and pains. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Strengthening exercises and resistance exercises

These exercises during pregnancy help tone and strengthen muscles. Weight-bearing exercises or any resistance exercise can be done two days a week at low to moderate intensity levels. Most weight-bearing exercises engage the major muscle groups, such as the arms, legs, abdomen, chest, and back. These exercises can increase your good cholesterol levels, reduce insomnia and push you to get enough sleep every day.

Examples include lifting weights, using resistance bands, and bodyweight exercises like push-ups, sit-ups, and squats. However, it is important to take all precautions before planning resistance exercises during pregnancy and to speak with your health professional.

Many of us start with great enthusiasm that lasts a few days. But sticking with your exercise program is the most important thing to reap the full benefits of exercise during pregnancy.

Try to prioritize a healthy lifestyle. But don’t feel guilty if you miss a session or do less than you expected. Simple physical activities, such as walking to a store, climbing stairs, and gardening, are counted as exercise activity.

To learn more about fitness and pregnancy, check out this Health Shots interview with fitness expert Zoe Modgill.

Planning an exercise program during pregnancy.

Before beginning any exercise, it is important to speak with your primary advisor and physical therapist. Current medical conditions help design the exercise program as it differs depending on the health conditions and fitness level of each individual.

* Start by setting small goals, which will lead to larger goals.
* Start slow and steady. Don’t overdo exercise during pregnancy. Listen to your body and your mind to know your limit.
* Stay hydrated and drink an adequate amount of water before and after training. 4. Stop when you feel uncomfortable or sick.
* Choose the exercises or physical activity that makes you happy and keeps you motivated.


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