Week 35 of Your Pregnancy
Omg, how did time fly? If you haven’t been flaunting your growing belly in stylish clothes, dress up and snap photos before D-Day! By the way, if you are experiencing constipation during this period, be sure to include fibre in your diet for quick relief.
Has your bump’s shape changed a little? Well, that may happen if your baby’s head is positioned near the birth canal. At week 35 of your pregnancy, you must be busy planning and picturing your child’s birth. Though every baby is different, your baby should weigh about 2.5kg1 this week.
Your baby’s lungs are fully formed and ready for breathing! Its central nervous system is also becoming more mature1. Now able to suckle for feeds5, your baby’s digestive system is also almost ready for life outside the womb1.
Given its size, your growing baby now has less space to move around – but that doesn’t stop it from squirming around! If you look closely at your bump, you may be able to see it move3. Your placenta has also grown to over a quarter of your baby’s weight. By birth time, your placenta will be about a sixth of your baby’s birth weight4.
The Fibre of Life: Maintaining Healthy Bowel Function
Have you been grunting or straining in the toilet? Well, fret not! Constipation is a common problem in the third trimester6.
One reason for constipation is an increase in progesterone, which relaxes your muscles – including those in the digestive tract! This causes food to pass through your gut more slowly. The other reason is the pressure your growing baby is putting on your rectum.
To maintain normal bowel functions, here are some helpful tips: (BabyCenter)
- Include fibre-rich foods in your diet. Soluble fibres can be fermented in the gut, while insoluble ones will be passed through whole.
- Join other mummies in doing light exercises such as walking or yoga
- Drink plenty of water – ensure that your urine is clear or pale yellow in colour (that means you’re hydrated!)
- Check with your doctor if your iron supplements are causing constipation – if so, ask for an alternative6,7
Since fibre can only be found in plant-based foods, eat a variety of fibre-rich foods to get a good mix of fibres!
To increase your fibre intake, try some of the following food swaps:
- Baked potato instead of mashed potato
- Whole oranges instead of orange juice
- Vegetable and bean soup instead of vegetable soup
- Lentil curry with brown rice instead of chicken curry with white rice
¹ Deans A. Your New Pregnancy Bible, The experts’ guide to pregnancy and early parenthood. 4th ed. London: Carroll & Brown Publishers Limited, 2013. P.47.
² Curtis GB, Schuler J. Your pregnancy week by week. 7th ed. Cambridge: Fisher books, 2011. p.495. (Reference to this source deleted)
³ NHS UK. You and your baby at 33-36 weeks pregnant [Online]. 2015.
Available at: www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/pregnancy-weeks-33-34-35-36.aspx [Accessed August 2016].
⁴ Thompson JMD et al. Placenta weight percentile curves for singleton deliveries. 2007. BJOG; 116 (6): 715-720
⁵ Regan, L. Your pregnancy week by week. London: Dorling Kindersley Limited, 2013. p. 204.
⁶ Patient.co.uk. Common problems of pregnancy [Online]. 2013.
Available at: http://patient.info/doctor/common-problems-of-pregnancy[Accessed August 2016].
⁷ NHS UK. Common health problems in pregnancy [Online]. 2015.
Available at: www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/common-pregnancy-problems.aspx#Constipation[Accessed August 2016].
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