Better water in pregnancy

When you are pregnant the quality of the water you drink is more important than in other circumstances of life. Here’s what you need to know about what you pour into your glass.

How much water to drink during pregnancy

According to a study a few years ago, a person’s water needs can be calculated based on the amount of food they need per day[4]. Adults need about 1 milliliter to 1.5 milliliters of water for every calorie they eat (for example, a person on a 2000-calorie diet would need 2000-3000 ml of fluid per day). Most pregnant women are advised to increase their daily calorie intake by about 300 calories, starting in the second trimester. Therefore, they would need at least 300 ml of extra fluid per day.

What some important international bodies say

  • According to EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) the adequate water intake for women stands at 2.0 L/day. For pregnant women, the same water intake is proposed as for non-pregnant women plus an increase proportional to the increase in energy intake (300 ml / day).
  • According to the National Health Observatory, a woman should drink an average of 2.2 liters of water per day and other drinks for proper hydration.
  • According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the daily amount of water taken by a pregnant woman should be between 1.9 and 2.8 liters per day.

These values are indicative; In conditions of hot climates and intense physical activity, or other conditions that induce dehydration, the water levels to be taken can vary significantly (it can be considered even more than double the indicated values). This also occurs in conditions of stress and gastro-enteric disorders that lead to vomiting and diarrhea, such as infant diarrhea.

Control and improve hydration during pregnancy

Tips to help you stay hydrated during pregnancy

  • Anticipate thirst stimulation – You should drink enough fluids so you don’t get thirsty often.
  • Keep your urine clear – Drink enough fluids that your urine is colorless or light yellow.
  • Train, but cool – Do your workouts and keep a workout routine but try to stay away from the heat, though. Exercise at the beginning or end of the day or exercise indoors.
  • Take in more fluids – Milk, juice, teas and soups, soups, herbal teas all count as water intake or liquids.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables – not only for a balanced diet, but also because they also contain water.
  • Completely avoid alcohol – There is no safe level of alcohol to consume during pregnancy.
  • Make the water more delicious – Adding a slice of lemon or some preparation such as Brioschi to the water can make it less “monotonous”.
  • Always keep water handy, ready to sip – Take a refillable water bottle with you wherever you go.
  • Limit caffeine – Limit coffee and beverages that contain caffeine, including energy drinks and cola.
  • Limit sugary and carbonated drinks – It’s also important to avoid too many carbonated or high-sugar drinks, as part of a healthy diet.

Try to get about 20% of the water you need from the food you eat, then try to eat foods that are high in water. Foods that contain 90% to 100% water include:

  • Greens like kale, celery and spinach
  • Fruits such as watermelon, melon and strawberries
  • Beverages such as nonfat milk and water

Foods with water content between 70% and 89% include:

  • Dairy products, such as cottage cheese and yogurt
  • Fruits such as grapes, pears and oranges
  • Vegetables like avocados and carrots

Why drinking plenty of water is important

Water is the main component that makes up the human body: water makes up about 60% of your body.

The small intestine absorbs 85%–90% of water intake while most of the remaining water is absorbed in the large intestine.

Water is essential because:

  • Regulates core body temperature
  • It is necessary for optimal absorption of water-soluble vitamins, which include ascorbic acid, nicotinic acid, riboflavin, B12 (thiamine) and B6 (pyridoxine).
  • It is the main constituent of the cells of our body, it is present in every cell and in various tissues and compartments, and that intervenes in the regulation of cellular metabolism
  • Intervenes in the transport of proteins and carbohydrates through the bloodstream
  • It helps cartilage regeneration and its lubrication , reducing joint inflammation
  • It helps us to eliminate waste substances through different ways; the more you drink, the faster the elimination will be.
  • It accounts for 98% of saliva .
  • It manages to keep the mother’s skin tissues elastic and toned and to hydrate the hair during pregnancy;
  • It acts as a shock absorber for the spinal cord and brain
  • Decreases the risk of urinary tract infections
  • Decreases the risk of preterm birth
  • Adequate fluid intake also ensures that the mother has sufficient reserves to tolerate blood loss during childbirth.
  • Prevents constipation and hemorrhoids – Constipation is a common problem during pregnancy tags. Taking iron supplements can make constipation worse. Drinking more water can help relieve constipation, not to mention the pressure from constipation can cause Hemorrhoids .

Most water contains low concentrations of fluoride. Fluoride is considered a chemical element of great importance for health: in low concentrations it helps in the development of bones and teeth of the fetus tags. However, high concentrations of fluoride can also have serious effects on skeletal tissue. In pregnant women, however, there is no evidence of a correlation between Down syndrome or congenital malformations and consumption of water with high concentrations of fluoride.

Water consumption in pregnancy

You lose water throughout the day through normal bodily processes, including:

  • Sweating
  • Urine production
  • Bowel movements

You’ll lose even more water when:

  • You are at high altitudes or outdoors on warmer days
  • You are sick, particularly if you have Hyperemesis gravidarum .
  • You are more physically active

During pregnancy, however, your body needs more water to:

  • Produces more blood
  • Promote your baby’s blood circulation
  • Forming amniotic fluid , which is the fluid that surrounds your baby

Which type of water to choose: characteristics

Features of the best water for pregnancy:

  • Natural or sparkling makes no difference. Sparkling water, however, during pregnancy helps future mothers to better withstand nausea in the first months of gestation;
  • The ideal for pregnant women is low mineral or medium mineral water, not minimally mineralized water. The salts contained in drinking water are useful, indeed very useful and healthy. In the fixed residue (the sum of the salts resulting from heating to 180°C) we find real nutrients, starting with calcium, magnesium and potassium.
  • Calcium – calcium water, with a calcium content greater than 150 mg/lt and which helps pregnant women to prevent osteoporosis and also, in some cases, hypertension.
  • Bicarbonated – bicarbonate ion greater than 100mg/l: in moderate quantities in water it facilitates digestion and reduces gastric acidity, which is very common in pregnancy, the cause of annoying heartburn; Finally, bicarbonate water, with a bicarbonate content greater than 600 mg/lt which can perform an anti-inflammatory action and help digestion
  • Sodium – maximum 20mg/l: under normal conditions a diet already includes low sodium water, during pregnancy it is highly recommended to drink water with a low sodium content to eliminate excess liquids.
  • Nitrates – below 10mg/l: higher nitrate levels could harm the baby;
  • a slightly acidic or neutral pH facilitates proper digestion.
  • Temperatures – Drinking cold water during pregnancy can cause congestion with dangerous effects: the general malaise runs the risk of causing further problems even for the baby in the womb. It is easier, as well as advisable, to assimilate liquids whose temperature is equal or close to that of the body or that of the environment.

Tap water during pregnancy?

If you live in Italy, the water that arrives at your home is drinkable and safe for human consumption and domestic use, as it is subjected to a purification process and numerous analytical checks by the Integrated Water Service Manager and the competent control body, i.e. the ASL, which verify compliance with the potability requirements dictated by current legislation (Legislative Decree 31/2001 and subsequent amendments).

Drinking water is therefore by definition and by law a guarantee of quality and safety for everyone, even for women who are expecting a baby or are already breastfeeding.

There are therefore no contraindications to using drinking water from your tap during pregnancy and lactation.

The chlorine content should not worry, and better not to filter the tap water with the appropriate jugs: the salts contained in the waters are useful, indeed very useful and healthy and to go and remove them without knowing exactly what you do you risk then having to reintegrate them in another way ..

Best water in pregnancy – brands

There are several brands of water on the market recommended for pregnant women.

  • Natural Rocchetta – Type: Oligomineral water; Source: Gualdo Tadino, Perugia; pH at source: 7.61; Fixed residue at 180°: 181.6 mg/l; Low in sodium; Suitable for infant feeding
  • Olive Grove Natural Mineral Water – Type: Mineral water; Source: Uliveto Terme, Pisa; pH at source: 5.8; Fixed residue at 180°: 741 mg/l; Rich in: Calcium
  • Essential Source Natural Mineral Water – Type: Water rich in mineral salts; Source: Terme di Boario, Brescia; pH at source: 7.0; Fixed residue at 180°: 2550 mg/l; Rich in: Calcium, magnesium, sulphates
  • S. Pellegrino Natural Mineral Water – Type: Carbonated mineral water; Source: San Pellegrino Terme, Bergamo; pH at source: nd; Fixed residue at 180°: 854 mg/l; Rich in: Calcium, magnesium, sulphates

How much water to drink in lactation

The nursing mother should drink enough water to quench her thirst or a little more. A common recommendation for the mother is to drink a glass of water during meals and whenever she breastfeeds. But without overdoing it. A woman who drinks too much fluid no longer produces breast milk.

EFSA’s guidance suggests increasing the daily drinking water dose by at least 700 ml during the breastfeeding period. So, a woman during breastfeeding should drink 2700 ml / day, about 13 glasses per day of water.

Symptoms of dehydration

If you don’t drink enough water during pregnancy, you’ll be dehydrated. This means that your body is losing more water than you take in. Signs of dehydration include:

  • Dark colored urine
  • Urinating less frequently
  • Extreme thirst
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion

Mild dehydration can affect your memory or mood. It can also impact how you process information. Symptoms of mild dehydration usually go away after drinking water, but you may need medical help if you have severe or constant dehydration.

Serious complications:

  • Low amniotic fluid
  • Kidney stones
  • Swelling
  • Birth defects
  • Urinary tract infections, which can lead to preterm birth and preterm birth.

Katherine Johnson, M.D., is a board-certified obstetrician-gynecologist with clinical expertise in general obstetrics and gynecology, family planning, women’s health, and gynecology.

She is affiliated with the Obstetrics and Gynecology division at an undisclosed healthcare institution and the online platform,

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