Getting ready for pregnancy

This month we are celebrating all the milestones in a woman’s life from babyhood to post-menopause. This week we are starting at the beginning of life and considering those who are contemplating parenthood. If this is you, or someone you know – we have lots of experience, both professionally and personally - to get you and your partner in tip top shape mentally and physically for this magical time.

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Getting ready for pregnancy

This month we are celebrating all the milestones in a woman’s life from babyhood to post-menopause.  This week we are starting at the beginning of life and considering those who are contemplating parenthood.  If this is you, or someone you know – we have lots of experience, both professionally and personally – to get you and your partner in tip top shape mentally and physically for this magical time.

Humans have been having babies very successfully since the dawn of the species, however, the process of creating life and giving birth is so medicalised in the healthcare system these days that being pregnant has almost become an ailment.  Unless there are any contraindications, becoming pregnant, even for those for who it has been difficult, sustaining a healthy pregnancy and giving birth comfortably and beautifully, is what we aim to be the outcome for our Optimal Health would-be parents. 

Before we explain how we approach prenatal care of our clients, let’s delve into something we don’t often consider but is important to understand.  Humans are biologically animals, and despite our highly medicalised world and interventions, we still default to our natural animal state under stress.  In the animal kingdom where survival of the fittest is key to species survival, females are unlikely to get pregnant or give birth if the situation is not optimal for a healthy offspring or its safe arrival.  Pandas, for instance, are notoriously difficult to get pregnant and give birth in the unnatural environment of being in captivity and antelopes will not give birth if the herd is being hunted by a lion.  It stands to reason then if left to nature, for the most part, humans are the same.  If a female is seriously underweight with a BMI of less than 19, it will be more difficult to get pregnant – her subconscious body is telling her that there is not enough food around to sustain a family, let alone herself.  It is not unusual to find stories of labour, otherwise going well at home, turning a little more complicated on entering hospital.  If the environment is busy and light-filled, added to which the woman is placed on her back and hooked up to monitors, her reptilian brain (the basal ganglia that controls her innate and automatic self-preserving behaviour patterns) may kick in, attempting to slow things down until she is in a ‘safe’ environment in order to give birth.  It may be that medical interventions are made at this point, and, rather than a quiet and beautiful experience where pain is thought of as positive.  With proper preparation and armed with knowledge and control at each stage, the whole experience for the couple can be a different story.

That is what we are about here at Optimal Health.  Preventing what does not need to be, giving power back to our clients for their own health and milestone experiences.  A couple who are prepared both physically and mentally prior to conceiving, with the comfort of being supported with the same team throughout pregnancy, childbirth and beyond are in the best situation for a happy and fulfilling experience and better mental and physical health of the child. 

We start by taking a deep-dive assessment of the would-be parents as individuals. These assessments reveal the secrets of the body both inside and out, allowing us to unblock stuck energies, rid the body of toxins, and condition the body for strength and nutritional optimisation.

Lisa Steel, founder of Optimal Health, says,  “we believe in being pre-emptive and recognising potential deficiencies or issues early on, such as nutrition, body alignment, gentle movements and optimal breathing techniques.  After undertaking a Pregnancy and Childbirth Assessment, our Senior Clinicians advise on nutritional and pregnancy lifestyle allowing clients to make the best choices during pregnancy and post-partum, resolve issues and stress on the body and assist with expected early pregnancy development milestones.”

Ashling Casey-Moore, resident Osteopath and Naturopath with decades of experience working with expectant couples and their babies, tells me, “I like to prepare my couples from around six months before they start to try for a family to clear their systems of toxins.  Detoxification needs to start before pregnancy, not afterwards for both parents.  Sperm lives for three months, so the toxins need to be cleared well before conception and part of my role is to educate what constitutes a toxicity risk.  For instance, I advise stop using plastic chopping boards, cling film and all things plastic which acts as an oestrogen-mimic. I also advise switching to an entirely organic diet for the couple to ensure chemicals used in food production is out of the system too.”  Of course, it does not stop there with Ashling’s support, she works to strengthen the body, preparing it for the pregnancy, and teaches exercises for baby positioning and a more comfortable birth. 

Heather Summers, our newest clinical team member is passionate about women’s health and supports couples wanting to get pregnant, provides education for them around their cycle and how to effectively practice The Fertility Awareness Method.  Evident from the number of women coming to see her for reproductive issues generally, Heather is conscious that there is very little support for them in the current system.  She treats conditions such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), and endometriosis as well as other female-centred issues. 

If you would like to book a Pregnancy and Childbirth Assessment, or for further information, please email clientcare@ohclinicgroup.com or call 0330 223 6553.

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On the menu

Naturally paleo, gluten free, and low in carbs, this is a healthy version of chicken fajitas that all the family will enjoy. Prepare the pineapple mango salsa and guacamole before you prepare the fajitas so that you can eat the meal hot.

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Getting ready for pregnancy

This month we are celebrating all the milestones in a woman’s life from babyhood to post-menopause. This week we are starting at the beginning of life and considering those who are contemplating parenthood. If this is you, or someone you know – we have lots of experience, both professionally and personally – to get you and your partner in tip top shape mentally and physically for this magical time.

Read More »