Here are a few tips from Healthy Child Healthy World on how to have a "green pregnancy".
These eight simple steps will help you reduce your exposure to synthetic pesticides and guard against certain cancers and high dioxin intake. Increasing your intake of fruits, vegetables, legumes, and fiber may help eliminate toxins.
- Buy locally produced food.
- Buy organically produced food.
- Eat fresh, whole foods with adequate starch and fiber.
- Eat fewer and smaller portions of animal products.
- Choose minimally processed and packaged foods.
- Prepare your own meals at home.
Eat foods high in folic acid before conceiving and while pregnant.
Sources include dried beans and peas, citrus fruit, spinach, and broccoli. Adequate folic acid early in a baby’s development helps prevent neurological defects, such as spina bifida.
Cut down your intake of animal fats to reduce dioxin, PCB, and mercury exposure.
Trim fat and skin from meats well. Limit consumption of fatty and predatory fish, such as tuna and salmon, to once a month at most; alternatives include flounder and sole. Broil fish and meat, so that fat drips away from the food. Choose skim dairy products.
Choose lead-free calcium supplements.
Some calcium supplements, particularly those made from ground oyster shells, bone meal or dolomite, may raise your lead intake. Eat foods high in calcium, such as beans, tofu, and dark greens, instead.
Drink pure water.
Test drinking water for lead, chlorine byproducts (trihalomethanes), and pesticides. If there are contaminants, install an appropriate water filter.
Test old paint for lead while planning your pregnancy.
Lead is stored in the bones and can be passed to a developing baby through the placenta. Removal of lead paint must only be done by a professional and pregnant women should stay away from the area until it is thoroughly cleaned. See Detecting and Removing Lead Paint for more information and resources.
Don’t use hair dyes until after you’ve had your baby.
Hair dyes can contain lead acetate and hormone disrupting alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEs). Lead persists in the body and can cross the placenta to harm developing babies. Hormone disruptors may affect the reproductive system.
Avoid dry cleaners that use perc.
Perc is a toxic solvent that can accumulate in fatty tissue and breast milk.
Find out what chemicals are in your local air, water, and soil.
Start in your backyard, by finding out what’s in the soil.
For more information on how to create an eco-conscious lifestyle for you and your baby, please visit Healthy Child Healthy World.
Also check out Raising Baby Green- a book with easy to follow tips.