What water to drink during pregnancy?

As we know, water is essential during pregnancy  to form amniotic fluid , to support the increase in blood volume , to circulate nutrients and oxygen within the body and to eliminate waste products .

But which water to drink during pregnancy? Tap or bottled? Natural or sparkling? Here’s everything you need to know about drinking water for pregnant women.

Which water in pregnancy?

To begin with, let’s say that the ideal water for pregnant women should be:

  • low mineral or medium mineral content (fixed residue below 500 mg/L or between 500 and 1000 mg/L, respectively);
  • low in sodium (less than 20 mg/L) and low in nitrates (less than 10 mg/L);
  • with a high content of bicarbonate and calcium (above 100 mg/L). Waters of this type are called bicarbonate-lime ;
  • with slightly acidic or neutral pH (between 5.0 and 7.5).

To choose bottled water that respects these characteristics, you can consult the mineral water database , according to your region of residence.

Tap water in pregnancy: is it possible?

The answer is yes, provided of course it is drinkable. If you want to know the chemical-physical characteristics of the water distributed in your area (for example to check the calcium content), consult the periodic communications or the website of your water manager or get information from your Local Health Authority .

Sparkling water during pregnancy: pros and cons 

Carbonated water has no contraindications in pregnancy, although it is important to underline that the presence of gas tends to increase the sensation of abdominal swelling .

On the other hand, during nausea , many pregnant women struggle to drink plain water and find sparkling water a very useful alternative.

Water and lemon during pregnancy: an extra aid against nausea

Adding juice or a slice of lemon to water is another little trick often used by expectant mothers to counteract pregnancy sickness . The only advice is not to overdo it, because this citrus fruit could make stomach acid worse .

If nausea prevents you from drinking the recommended amount of water, there are other strategies you can take:

  • drink often but in small sips
  • use a straw
  • try to drink between meals instead of during
  • try sucking on some ice cubes or popsicles (but in the latter case beware of sugars!)

Tonic water in pregnancy: no thanks!

In addition to being high in added sugar, tonic water contains quinine , which is potentially harmful to the fetus . Consequently, this drink is not recommended during pregnancy.

How much water should you drink during pregnancy?

The recommendation is to drink a lot, especially in the summer season or in case of sport. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the daily amount should be between 8 and 12 glasses of water .

Kathryn Barlow is an OB/GYN doctor, which is the medical specialty that deals with the care of women's reproductive health, including pregnancy and childbirth.

Obstetricians provide care to women during pregnancy, labor, and delivery, while gynecologists focus on the health of the female reproductive system, including the ovaries, uterus, vagina, and breasts. OB/GYN doctors are trained to provide medical and surgical care for a wide range of conditions related to women's reproductive health.

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