Posts Tagged ‘preclampsia’

Pregnancy Week 23: Swelling and Weight Gain

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Pregnancy Week 23: Swelling and Weight GainFor all pregnant women there must be some weight gain, and I am definitely no exception. Lately, I’ve been skyrocketing upward on the scale and with a healthy amount of swelling to boot. My hands look like sausages, my toes like cocktail wieners, and my shoes barely fit. I blame part of this on the heat–even in October, Oregon has had unseasonably warm weather. But mostly I blame the swelling on my cravings for salty and sweet foods.

Swelling, or edema as it’s medically called, just means that fluid from your body is pooling in your extremities. As your blood volume doubles to accommodate baby, so does all the fluids that support your body. I find my swelling is worst in the evening as I lay down to sleep. Between gaining weight and swelling, I’m a mess!

What You Can Do

One thing you can do is cut out salty and sweet foods– both of these tend to lead to water retention that will leave you looking like the Stay Puff Marshmallow Man. Also avoid excess caffeine (no easy task for a tired preggo) and rest as much as possible, changing positions often. If you stand often then sit, stand if you sit a lot. If the swelling gets really bad, you can always try compression hose–those sexy, sexy nude-colored socks. If you are having issues with swelling, watch out for an increase in blood pressure accompanied with headaches, as these are warning signs for preecclampsia.

Foods like celery, parsley and cabbage help draw out fluids, so my favorite go-to tea has been parsley tea with lemon. Just hot water over a handful of parsley leaves with a lemon slice. This has been helping curb my craving for salty and sweet food and helping me stay on my new clean-eating fix to help slow the weight gain. I’m aiming for healthy, natural foods, staying away from junk at all levels. I used to follow this philosophy with my other two pregnancies, but this time around I admit I’ve been very lazy about my eating habits. That changes today!

Pia Watzig is a stay-at-home mom to two little boys with a third due Thanksgiving. She enjoys not being swollen!