Starting a pregnancy underweight increases the risk to both mother and baby during any pregnancy. But there are ways you can keep your eating disorder in check while going through pregnancy. Nutrition, weight gain, support, communication and therapy are all useful ways to fight anorexia during a pregnancy. Under weight mothers risk cardiac issues, depression, labor complications and premature births if they are not able to get their weight under control during the pregnancy. It is important that any mother struggling with anorexia; talk with their obstetrician right away so they can properly monitor you for the risks.

Nutrition

A woman struggling with anorexia may have a difficult time eating enough calories to gain weight. But you can make an effort to eat as much healthy food as possible in the calories that are being eaten. Taking a daily vitamin is the first step; pregnancy vitamins include many essential nutrients that a pregnant woman has to have to grow a healthy baby. Also incorporate protein and calcium in the meals you are eating each day. Healthy fats, like almonds, are also good for your body during pregnancy.

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Weight Gain

Eating enough to gain some weight during pregnancy is an essential part of being healthy and having a healthy baby. A woman with anorexia may struggle with the idea of gaining weight, even though she knows it will be best for the baby. The typical weight gain recommended during pregnancy is 25 to 35 points. This includes the weight of the baby, increase blood and other fluids that the body needs. Some women who suffer from anorexia will be able to gain weight because they see it as a short period of time and it is essential to their baby, some will not be able to gain the necessary weight because of the progression of their eating disorder.

Support

Seek support from local pregnancy groups or anorexia groups. If you cannot find any groups, try talking with your family and friends. Be open about your struggles and as for their help. Then be open to the help they are offering you. Anorexia is a difficult disease and working through it takes many years, but during a pregnancy you will need to work on the coping skills necessary to eat healthy and gain the necessary weight to keep you and your baby healthy.

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Communication

Your doctor needs to be communicated with regularly. He can be a great resource in your fight to have a healthy baby. It might be necessary to increase your office visits or check in on a more frequent basis to make sure you and your baby are doing well throughout the pregnancy.

Therapy

An individual therapist is a great resource for anyone struggling with anorexia, but especially a pregnant woman. You can meet on a weekly basis and develop goals to work on throughout your pregnancy. A therapist can help you work on the long standing issues that are behind your anorexia and help you work toward a path of recovery. Therapy sessions are just between you and your therapist so you can feel comfortable sharing all your concerns about your pregnancy without feeling judged. Use your therapist as much or as little as necessary to help you during your pregnancy.

Pregnancy is a time in a woman’s life that can be very scary. A woman struggling with anorexia can be absolutely terrified during this period of time. Talking to your doctor, get a therapist, find a support group, and eating healthy are all ways you can commit to a healthy pregnancy. Seek the help of your friends, family and doctor to ensure you have people to talk to while you go through this pregnancy.