So it’s been a month since I’ve shared anything here and I figured it was about time I posted something. I have shared this news with family and on personal social media and now here…I’m expecting my first child! I am currently 5 1/2 months pregnant. This is not a lifetsyle blog or a mommy blog so I am going to stick with the wellness side of it and share with you how I have been supporting my skin during pregnancy.
There is a ton of demand on a woman’s body when she is pregnant. One of the biggest changes is the growing bump. Your skin needs to grow and stretch with the baby and us women would love that to happen with the most minimal impact possible. Stretch marks and Linea Nigra are very common in pregnancy so much so that 1 in 2 women will get stretch marks.
A lot can be done however, to support your body and your skin during this time to reduce the quantity of stretch marks as well as their intensity (less red and itchy). Below are the products I have been using and I have no stretch marks across my bump so far, and I’m just over half-way through my pregnancy.
Collagen is an essential addition to a pregnant woman’s routine. Specifically, powdered collagen from a marine or bovine source. Collagen will help support the natural elasticity of the skin through the production of elastin, helping it to stretch. This also important for your growing blood vessels. Collagen is a very important source of the amino acid glycine. Glycine is also found in gelatin and slow cooked meats (pulled pork, bone broth, chicken soup) due to the breakdown of the animals connective tissue. According to Registered Dietitian and prenatal nutrition educator, Lily Nichols , “the demand for glycine during pregnancy may already exceed the capacity for it’s synthesis, making it conditionally indispensable”.
Glycine is needed for the synthesis of fetal DNA and collagen, among other functions. It’s particularly important…later in pregnancy when your baby is gaining weight rapidly. Your baby’s developing bones, connective tissues, organs, and skin need glycineLily Nichols, RDN, Real Food for Pregnancy Chp 3, pg 37
Omega 3’s are important for moisture retention in your skin which also helps with the stretching. In addition they are an excellent anti-inflammatory supplement that also have research to support aiding the developing brain and eyes of the fetus. I am using this brand.
Rosehip Oil is a wonderful oil that you apply topically to your skin. The unique feature of Rosehip oil is the ability to regenerate skin cells and collagen and restore skins elasticity. Some consider it to be the botox of skin oils. It is rich in Vitamins A and C as well as omega 3’s and 6’s. I have been using St. Francis Herb Farm Rosehip Oil for a few months now and I do believe it’s another reason my skin is stretching well.
Marula Oil is another wonderful oil that actually works to prevent and heal stretch marks. Sourced from the fruit of the Marula tree in Namibia, Marula oil is considered to be a “miracle” oil. It softens and soothes the skin and improves the skin’s ability to retain moisture, all of which support your growing belly. Again, I am using the St. Francis Herb Farm brand of Marula Oil.
A few other notes I have to share is to DRINK YOUR WATER. Water is essential for the growing baby, your growing blood supply, the amniotic fluid and maintaining the moisture in your skin. It is also important that while we gain weight during pregnancy, it should be slow and steady. A slow and steady weight gain will also prevent/reduce the impact of stretch marks as your skin is growing very slowly. Rapid weight gain can lead to an increased number of stretch marks and they can be itchy or red in colour. Your primary prenatal care practitioner (whether Dr. or Midwife) will let you know if your gain is too rapid.
Lily Nichols RDN, CDE is the bestselling author of Real Food for Pregnancy as well as Real Food for Gestational Diabetes. I highly suggest you check her out with the link above if you are expecting or planning to.