A gluten free pregnancy: my pregnancy survival tips
Those of you that know me may be thinking I've lost my mind. Thinking "Jenna, you're always gluten free because you have Celiac Disease." But, I'll explain...
From the beginning of my pregnancy there was a reoccurring question that always popped up from people that don't know me so well.
"Are you still gluten free now that you're pregnant?"
I have an autoimmune disease called Celiac - meaning I'm not gluten free just for fun.
I kind of have to be. Hence the nickname, Gluten Free Jenna. ;)
So, how did Celiac Disease affect my pregnancy.
Luckily, we had no issues conceiving, but that's not always the case.
Many people with Celiac Disease or other autoimmune diseases have infertility issues that take years to uncover.
Because of malabsorption problems and difficulties getting all the nutrients in the foods I eat (another fun issue for those of us with Celiac), my doctor classified my pregnancy as high risk to keep a close eye on the growth of the baby.
As the weeks went on, Coralie hit all of her growth milestones and towards the end this was just a formality. We didn't mind because it meant we got to see her with a few extra ultrasounds.
For me, heartburn has always been a problem. While I have it under control with seasonal cleansing and essential oils, my stomach is unruly and still needs to be put in its place every once in while.
Pregnancy was a different story. Before I even knew I was carrying a little baby, heartburn started overtaking my life.
There was meal (or snack) time then 15 minutes later cue the heartburn.
This was an easy fix though thanks to my essential oils. When I felt like my stomach had a mind of its own, I grabbed my DigestZen oil and used it. DoTERRA even makes this amazing roll-ons now that I would carry with me in my purse for super easy application.
Then, there was the sleep issues! There are two sides to this one.
Before I made lifestyle changes, I had a lot of problems with fatigue.
Pregnancy fatigue is REAL folks. If you know any pregnant ladies out there right now - don't judge them for sleeping more than 8 hours or napping 2x a day.
My Mito2Max really helped keep my energy levels up to get through the work day.
After the first trimester, the insomnia kicked in. As my body was changing, there were a lot of sleepless nights. Granted I had just got a promotion at my corporate gig, we were selling and buying a house, and planning a wedding during the pregnancy which is enough to keep you awake at night.
But I used a few of my favorite essential oil combos in my diffuser at night to help keep my mind at ease and get more rest.
A few of my favorites were (and still are):
- Breathe and Serenity
- Sandalwood and Balance
- and Peace and Wild Orange
The final issue was keeping up with my changing body. My belly was growing by the day and gaining weight put extra pressure on my body.
I believe in a woman's intuition and trust my own feelings.
One of my big beliefs even for my clients going through my elimination diet program Gluten Free Glow, deprivation is not the key to wellness.
So I listened to my body during my pregnancy and ate when I was hungry. I even indulged in desserts and other goodies when I needed something extra.
I don't step on scales or weight myself regularly.
I won't sugar coat it.
Watching my weight increase at each appointment caused some anxiety, but it also meant that my baby was growing and healthy.
To fight my growing belly, I used a blend called Immortelle to help with unwanted marks on my skin that would remain after pregnancy.
And to help with the added pressure on my legs. My man and I did weekly foot massages with fractionated coconut oil, and my mom gifted me a zero-gravity chair that let me recline with my feet above my head.
Both were a lifesaver (actually a foot-saver)!
Those are some of my natural pregnancy survival tips.
Now that Coralie is here, I'm following my Beyond the Bloat program to get my body, mindset, and wellness back to its best state.