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hydration, pregnancy and breastfeeding: q&a with a dietitian, part II

  • 4 min read

We had such a great initial conversation with Upspring Medical Director and Registered Dietitian, Lisa Dispensa, that we decided to do it again! Chief Evangelist, Kimberly Schram, talked with Lisa via Instagram Live about U.Siip water enhancers and the importance of hydration while a mama is pregnant and breastfeeding. Watch the 8-minute video directly on Instagram or read the highlights here!

how many glasses per day does an expecting mom need to drink?

She should drink ten 8-ounce glasses of water per day. There are so many changes taking place in a woman's body while she's pregnant. Blood volume expands by about 40%, and the volume of water in your body also increases. These are reasons it’s important to keep that hydration up while you’re expecting!

what about during lactation?

Daily water needs increase with lactation to thirteen 8-ounce glasses of water. You lose more water with milk production, so more needs to be replenished while you’re nursing your little one.

why is hydration so important to pregnant and breastfeeding moms?

There are so many changes happening in your body during these 2 important time periods. With the blood volume expansion and total body water increase that happens during pregnancy it's crucially important that you're moving nutrients through your body. Hydration can help with that, and water itself is considered an essential nutrient!

Constipation and changes in bowel movements are very common during pregnancy and postpartum (if you know, you know). You can thankfully start to get ahead of that by drinking adequate fluids.

consistency in water intake is also key, correct?

Yes! It's ideal to drink water consistently throughout the day. Especially around meal times, if you're not feeling nauseated (from morning sickness), drinking water can help with digestion. It can also help prevent bloating and the associated discomfort that many expecting moms experience. That said, do what works for you. As long as you're getting the recommended glasses per day, that's what's most important.

u.siip contains 4 electrolytes. can you talk more about what electrolytes are most important during pregnancy and breastfeeding, and why they matter so much?

The great thing is that U.Siip contains the 4 key electrolytes that are so important during these time periods: sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.

Electrolytes are essential nutrients. Like water, we need to replace them each day. They're lost through the skin through sweat, through urine, through stool, and of course, during breastfeeding. Sodium and potassium are 2 key electrolytes that most people are familiar with. They work together to help lock in fluid, balance the body's water, and regulate functions like muscle contraction and heart rhythm.

Calcium and magnesium are 2 key electrolytes that people don't usually think of as electrolytes. These are very important for muscle and bone health. As baby grows, she's taking what she needs from mom's body which includes some of mom's calcium. Replacing calcium in any way you can during pregnancy becomes extra important.

These electrolytes are essential, but you always want to avoid excess levels of anything. Sodium in particular. Some sodium is good for you, but definitely avoid it in excess!

many moms are concerned about sugar intake. tell us more about the sugar in u.siip?

There is a light touch of sugar in U.Siip for some flavor. Four grams to be exact. Our goal has always been to help moms (and really, people in general!) drink more water. We wanted to make a product that was fun and palatable and felt the best way to do that was with very light sugar and sodium. We kept the amount of sodium low, and upped that amount a bit for the potassium, calcium, and magnesium electrolytes in each serving.

is it possible to become over-hydrated during pregnancy?

Great question because yes, it is possible! Everything goes back to balance. Anything in excess is an issue and has the opposite effect. If you're really overdoing it and drinking, for example, more than a gallon of water each day, that can actually lead to low electrolytes and in particular low sodium levels. To avoid this, don’t overdo your fluids.

The recommended amount of water isn’t a hard science, rather, they're guidelines. Drink 8-10, but probably closer to 10, glasses of water per day during pregnancy. If you have further questions or concerns about your condition in particular, definitely do consult with your doctor.

how does a mom--or anyone for that matter--know when they are properly hydrated?

Signs of inadequate hydration are subtle. It can be hard for busy moms to even recognize them sometimes! Being thirsty is perhaps the first sign. A few other signs to look out for are headaches, lower energy, darker urine, less frequent urination. If you’re unsure if you’re properly hydrated or not, it’s probably best to reach for some water!

thanks, lisa!

Lisa Dispensa was a key player in the formulation of this great new product, and we cannot thank her enough for her time and expertise. U.Siip water enhancers are now available in 2 flavors: Lemon Lime and Citrus Ginger, which can be soothing for an expectant mama's tummy. More flavors are coming soon, so follow along to be the first to hear what's next!

*If you're unsure of the exact levels of electrolytes or nutrients you should be consuming or if you should be supplementing and by how much, we'd recommend consulting with your healthcare professional.

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