Many expecting mothers experience a frustrating lack of energy during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester and the third trimester.
Lack of energy during the first trimester
The hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy may trigger a lack of energy. Progesterone is the primary hormone affecting this change in energy levels. Additionally, the increased blood flow during pregnancy decreases your blood pressure, and this is thought to be a contributing factor to lower energy levels during the first trimester. Lack of energy may also be attributed to your emotional health and wellness while pregnant. Stress, mood swings, or anxiety, which all tend to increase with the onset of pregnancy, can cause you to feel mentally exhausted.
Lack of energy during the second trimester
You’re more likely to notice an increase in your energy levels, as the second trimester approaches. However, do not give yourself a hard time if you are one of the many women who continue to experience a lack of energy in the second trimester. Expecting mothers take advantage of this increased energy levels during the second trimester to start baby planning, setting up the nursery, and shopping for things the baby will need.
Lack of energy during the third trimester
A lack of energy during the third trimester shouldn’t be surprising. Your Baby is really growing, your body is changing, and you have to exert more energy to get things done. The extra effort can easily drain your existent energy and leave you feeling tired and exhausted. Getting adequate sleep may also be more challenging as your body changes and your baby grows. The lack of quality sleep can leave you with less energy and feeling tired.
How to manage a lack of energy
There are a few things you can do to help counteract a lack of energy. Some of these tips may work for you, but more likely, you may have to incorporate all possible steps to give you the best chance for feeling more energetic. Here are steps you can take:
Sleep, naps, and rest: You should give yourself the freedom to take naps or bed rest when you experience these moments of low energy during pregnancy. Go to bed early or sleep in. If you are working, you might take your lunch breaks for quick naps.
Change your schedule: Try to limit activities and give yourself the freedom to say “no” to new responsibilities. You can also speak to your boss about possibly shortening your day or extending an afternoon break for more rest.
Eat healthily: Eating healthily also contributes to energy levels. Nutrients such as protein, iron, and the calories that come with them invest in your energy levels. Eating too much processed food, sweets and meat can reduce your energy.
- Lack of Energy, American Pregnancy Association (http://americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-health/lack-energy-pregnancy/ )
- The Effects of Plant-based Diets on the Body and the Brain: a Systematic Review, (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41398-019-0552-0 )
- Eating to Boost Energy, (https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/eating-to-boost-energy )