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Baby on Board: Strategies for a Healthy Pregnancy Journey


During pregnancy, it's important to adopt helpful strategies to ensure a healthy and successful journey for both you and your baby.

Below are several helpful tips shared by Dr. Natalie Dogal Gardner, Fellow of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and OB-GYN, Redeemer Health:

  • Don't smoke or drink alcohol: Avoid smoking and consuming alcohol to minimize the risk of complications and harm to your baby.
  • Eat a nutritious diet: Sticking to a healthy diet will decrease the risk of pregnancy complications, help you look and feel better during your pregnancy, and make it easier and faster to get back to your pre-pregnancy weight. If your current diet comes up short, now's the time to set good eating habits such as those below:
    • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Vegetables are high in vitamin A, vitamin C, iron and magnesium, while fruits deliver vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium and fiber, all of which are essential to a baby's healthy development.
    • Don't skip meals. Skipping meals can lead to inadequate intake of key nutrients that are crucial for the health and development of both you and your baby. Skipping meals can also lead to low energy levels and fatigue, and may disrupt a healthy weight gain pattern during pregnancy. 
    • Restrict your sugar intake. Consuming excessive sugar during pregnancy can contribute to increased gestational weight gain, which may lead to complications such as gestational diabetes and high blood pressure. High sugar consumption can also lead to dental problems for you and your baby, and in some cases, excessive sugar intake has been linked to negative effects on the baby's brain function.
    • Curb the caffeine. While there is conflicting research on the effects of caffeine during pregnancy, it's best to err on the side of caution and limit caffeine intake as much as possible during pregnancy.
    • Practice food safety. Practicing food safety during pregnancy is critical protecting you and your developing baby from potential foodborne illnesses.
  • Stay physically active: Engage in regular exercise as advised by your healthcare provider. Moderate-intensity activities like walking, swimming, and prenatal yoga can help maintain overall fitness and manage weight gain during pregnancy.
  • Take prenatal vitamins: Be sure to take your daily prenatal vitamins containing key nutrients such as folic acid, iron, and calcium to support the healthy growth and development of your baby.
  • Get regular prenatal care: Schedule regular visits with your healthcare practitioner to monitor the progress of your pregnancy, receive necessary screenings, and address any concerns or complications that may arise.

Whether it's your first pregnancy or you're expanding your family, Redeemer Health's OB providers are available to support you every step of the journey.

Dr. Gardner sees patients at the Redeemer Health Medical Office Building, located at 1650 Huntingdon Pike, #118, Meadowbrook, PA 19046, as well as other locations. To schedule an appointment, call 215-914-2600.

You can also visit our provider directory or call the Redeemer Health Physician Referral Service at 800-818-4747 for assistance.

Watch Our Webinar - Baby on Board: Strategies for a Healthy Pregnancy Journey

In this webinar, OB-GYN Natalie Dogal Gardner, MD, Redeemer Health, offers tips for keeping you and your baby healthy throughout your pregnancy. Watch here.

Interested in Taking a Virtual Tour?

Visit RedeemerHealth.org/MaternityCare to take a virtual tour of Holy Redeemer Hospital's Labor and Delivery Unit.