(Health Secrets) I have never met a woman in my life that has escaped side effects of pregnancy like swelling or edema and gas. It seems like pregnancy, edema and gas just automatically go together. With the increased fluid intake and the stress on the circulatory system during pregnancy, it is much more difficult to cycle fluid out of the extremities. This is why edema is so common in the legs and hands of pregnant women. Although there is no way of getting rid of the swelling or gas completely, there are ways to help make it all more manageable.
We will first talk about swelling and then we will get into the gas. The most commonly tried and true recommendation is to balance sodium with adequate levels of potassium. Unbalanced sodium is going to lead to fluid retention, so balancing it with foods high in potassium is essential. Fluid build-up is commonly associated with hypertension, and increasing potassium can help relieve the strain on the circulatory system.
Some of the best food sources for potassium are potatoes, bananas, asparagus, apples, oranges, blackstrap molasses, kelp, and alfalfa. And just know that anything processed is going to be loaded with salt, so a rule of thumb even after the pregnancy is over is to try to avoid the boxed or processed foods.
Another positive intervention is to change from processed and bleached white table salt to unprocessed sea salt, which already contains balancing minerals. Some of the best sea salt is Himalayan and Celtic. Look for them in stores that emphasize health.
There are potassium supplements you could take, but and obviously consult your doctor first as he or she has a plan, and that is what you need to follow.
One supplement to take is dandelion root extract. This is great at resolving water retention and swelling, as it is a natural diuretic. The B-Complex vitamins can really do a great job in reducing edema too. Choose a pharmaceutical grade B-Complex and preferably one that is sub-lingual for the best absorption of vitamin B-12.
Now as far as battling gas with food, we know what foods to stay away from, but are there foods we should lean towards? The answer is yes, thankfully. One of the great foods for gas problems is pineapple, as it has enzymes to break down and help digest foods. Eating pineapple by itself and at least half an hour before a meal can help to keep the gas at bay or at least reduce it.
The same enzymes that are in pineapple are also in papaya, but almost all papaya for sale in the U.S. is genetically modified and should not be eaten, especially while pregnant. If you are lucky and find some organic papaya, go for it. Foods labeled organic are not genetically modified.
The other thing to do, as mentioned in the second article in this series, is to use a great probiotic to help keep up the bacterial flora of the gut and to make your gut more efficient.
It is really easier to control gas if you break your food intake down into smaller more frequent meals. For both bloating and gas, you can drink ginger or chamomile tea after your dinner or you can just take the capsule form. Either way, this will help to ease the bloating and gas.