Week 7 is when the more unpleasant symptoms of pregnancy often reach their height. It can feel like a rollercoaster ride of morning sickness and tiredness, but rest assured it does pass and you’ll soon be basking in that pregnancy glow.
Your baby’s development
This week your baby is the size of a… blueberry.
In week seven, although your baby is still tiny, bones are starting to form and the brain is developing. Also starting to take shape are your baby’s:
· Mouth and tongue
· Arms and legs (like tiny paddles rather than limbs)
· Lenses of the eyes
· Genitals (not that they’d be visible on an ultrasound scan yet)
The umbilical cord, the link between your baby and the placenta, is also now visible and getting ready for its crucial role.
Your physical pregnancy changes
Expect symptoms to get worse before they get better. Nausea or vomiting may become stronger and tiredness is going to be fairly constant. Not much fun… but hold the thought that it will soon pass and it’s all in a good cause.
Changes in hormone levels this week can also cause common pregnancy complaints such as:
· Skin breakouts
· Excess production of saliva (you’ll find yourself swallowing more frequently)
· Extra sensitivity to heat (you may find yourself turning the air-con up while everyone else is freezing)
You’ll also notice that you’re feeling a little bloated and you’re putting on weight around your middle.
Your health and fitness during pregnancy
Make sure you keep hydrated and eating dry foods as often as you can to deal with morning sickness. If you’re unable to keep anything down and you’re worried then see your doctor.
Don’t force yourself to keep up your usual hectic routine if you really don’t feel up to it. Now is a good time to book a few days off and relax. Sleep if you need to and eat what you want, when you want.
Your week 7 pregnancy checklist
· Stock up on dry crackers, chips and similar foods to nibble on.
· Keep drinking water – even if you only sip it.
· Suck some mints or hard lollies (if you can stomach them) to manage any excess saliva and keep your sugar levels up.
· Ask your partner to give you a hug, massage or run you a bath – anything to make you feel better.
· If you’re not experiencing morning sickness then keep active and make sure you’re eating a balanced diet.
· Continue taking 500mcg of folic acid every day.
Folic acid is an essential nutrient before conception and into pregnancy. Here is our list of nine fresh foods that will help you get your daily dose as part of your pre-pregnancy diet.
You’ve been told to boost the amount of folic acid in your pre-pregnancy diet. But which foods are high in folates? It can be as simple as grabbing an orange for morning tea and adding some asparagus to your dinner…
1. Lentils – These are one of the most folate-rich foods that you can add to your prenatal diet. Cooked lentils contain 180mcg of folate in every ½ cup serving. Note: your recommended daily intake is 400mcg.
2. Fresh spinach – The word folate is derived from foliage, or leaves, so think of leafy green vegetables and you’re on the right track. Spinach contains 218mcg of folate in a 2-cup serving.
3. Citrus fruits – One large orange contains 55mcg of folate and one cup of strawberries packs in 25mcg, so if you feel like a snack citrus fruits are the perfect choice.
4. Asparagus – Adding greens to your dinner? Try steamed asparagus spears, which contain 79mcg in every 1-cup serving.
5. Kidney beans – Kidney beans give your folate intake a boost by providing 115mcg of folate in a ½ cup of cooked or ready-to-eat canned kidney beans.
6. Broccoli – One cup of this nutrient-rich superfood can provide about one-quarter of your daily requirement (104mcg).
7. Fortified breads and cereal – Some foods, such as spaghetti made from wheat, are made from grains enriched with folic acid meaning extra folic acid is added to the grain after processing. A slice of enriched bread packs 60mcg.
8. Sunflower seeds – These are great as a quick snack or added to your breakfast, salads or soup. A handful of shelled sunflower seeds contains 82mcg of folic acid.
9. Avocado – One cup of sliced avocado contains 90mcg of folate, so don’t miss a chance to add some onto salads or sandwiches or mash up a quick serve of delicious guacamole.
· Talk to other Woolies’ mums in our forums about coping with morning sickness.
Wanting the sickness to stop? Read our week-by week guide and checklist for your 8th week of pregnancy to learn how your body and baby are developing.