Today we are excited to feature a new guest blogger, April (AKA Mama on a Green Mission), writing about living green. She is the mother of two boys and a baby girl due in February 2012. She’s married to a teacher and she works full time herself. She loves shopping and going to festivals and family events. She has huge interest in eco-friendly, organic and green living. In her spare time she loves blogging and doing product reviews and giveaways. You can find more of her writing and reviews at: Mama on a Green Mission.
When I was younger I wasn’t so much into “green” ways of living. As with many people, when I found out I was pregnant I wanted to make a difference for my children. I wanted to do things that would make this planet a better place for my children. I believe many people have this realization when they are carrying a baby. There are many things you can do to start making “green” decisions in your life that will help you to have a “greener”, healthier pregnancy.
As with many women, my biggest concern when I found out I was pregnant was the food I was eating. I knew that what I was eating my baby was getting. I had read so many articles about pesticides and processed foods. It really scared me. Pesticides have been linked to causing birth defects, nerve damage and cancer. I knew I had to make changes in my diet. I focused first on the fruits and vegetables I was eating. I started shopping at a grocery store that carried more organic produce options. I found information about what is called “The Dirty Dozen” and I make sure to buy these 12 fruits and vegetables organic (if not all of our fruits and vegetables): peaches, apples, sweet bell peppers, celery, nectarines, strawberries, pears, grapes (imported), spinach, lettuce and potatoes. These foods are known to have a much higher pesticide level than other fruits and vegetables. Packaged and processed foods are very unhealthy for your unborn child, not to mention they take a lot of energy to produce and cause unnecessary waste in our landfills. You want to use real food rather than packaged and processed foods. Also, avoid any type of canned foods. Canned foods contain BPA, which can pass through the placenta to harm the fetus.
Pregnancy requires women to increase their water intake. Another concern of mine was using bottled water and knowing that every bottle can end up in the landfill. There are so many reusable options these days that it is pretty much senseless to use a plastic bottle and throw it in the trash. You can buy an inexpensive carbon filter for your tap water and use one of the many reusable stainless steel canteens available these days. You will not only be contributing less to the landfill, but you will be saving all of that money you spend on bottled water.
The next thing I had to worry about was maternity clothes. We all know that eventually a pregnant woman will not be able to fit into her regular wardrobe. The most eco-friendly way to do this is to not buy brand new maternity clothes that you will only use for a few months. There are great new maternity wear rental companies where you can rent your clothes! If that’s not in the budget, stick to leggings and tunics that you may already have in your wardrobe or even ask friends for maternity hand-me-downs. We also have a maternity resale shop in the area I live in, so be sure to check locally for something like this!
Herbs can be a great help during pregnancy and postpartum. When trying to live a natural, green life, herbs are what we think of first to treat problems we may be having rather than prescription drugs. However, herbs do not go through the same evaluation process as prescription drugs by the FDA. Be sure you read up on which herbs are safe during pregnancy and which herbs you should avoid.
Finally, you’ll want to use all natural, non-toxic cleaning products in your home. This will not only help to keep you and your baby safe during pregnancy, but it will help to improve your family’s health. You can find amazing recipes online for creating your own safe, kid-friendly cleaning supplies or you can chose to purchase “green” cleaners that are becoming more popular and readily available in many stores.
It’s natural for mothers-to-be to want to make changes to help their unborn babies. It’s a great way to become a more “green” person if you aren’t already one. Know that the little changes you do make will not only help you to have a safe pregnancy, but will allow you to make a difference in our planet for our children and their futures. These are great tips to start during pregnancy and carry on throughout your life so that you too can make a difference!
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What do you think of these tips? Did pregnancy motivate you to make any “green” changes to your lifestyle?
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