Weighing around 8oz and measuring roughly 26cm long, your baby is growing rapidly. Right now, they are able to hear the sounds going on outside, so talking, singing or playing music is a great way to provide them with some stimulation.
Your baby’s rapidly developing brain requires special types of omega-3 and -6 fatty acids, known as LCPs (long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids). Research has shown that a higher intake of LCPs during pregnancy can help to reduce the risk of preterm delivery and may be associated with improved visual and brain development, as well as better movement skills in infancy.
Your baby gets the LCPs they need from your own internal stores via the placenta in pregnancy, and then through your breastmilk after birth. Eating plenty of omega-3-rich foods such as oily fish, including mackerel, sardines and trout, is therefore vital. However, you’re advised to eat no more than two portions of oily fish a week and not to take fish oil supplements as some contain high levels of vitamin A, which can prove harmful to your baby. Take a look at our recipes for mums and mums-to-be to see how you can get plenty of LCPs in your diet.
As for the rest of your diet, the Eatwell Plate can be used as a helpful guide to show you how much of each food group you should be aiming for. Although tempting, sweets, crisps, cakes, biscuits, fats, and sugar all provide extra calories but they are not a good source of the other nutrients that you and your baby need. Over-indulging now may make it harder to regain your pre-pregnancy shape after the birth.
At over 5 months, it’s probably becoming a lot more obvious that you’re pregnant. You’re probably also thinking of all the things you need to do organise and buy to prepare for your new arrival – we’ve created a list to help point you in the right direction.
The extra weight you’re carrying around is probably putting your body and legs under more and more pressure. If you’re feeling aches and pains or have swelling or puffiness in your legs, try these tips:
- Whenever you can, rest with your feet up
- Circle’ your feet at the ankles to improve your circulation
- Support socks or maternity tights can help swollen legs
- Take regular, gentle exercise like walking to aid circulation.