1. Stay hydrated.
Water helps detoxify your body and keeps your skin cells plump, which makes your skin healthier and more likely to bounce back from the stress caused by stretching. Get plenty of water by practicing these habits:
- Drink 8 glasses of water a day. If you find it difficult to ingest this much water, carry a large water bottle that holds the equivalent of 2 glasses (16 ounces) of water. Refill it 4 times throughout the day, rather than having to refill a single glass 8 times. It will make drinking enough water less of a hassle.
- Drink herbal tea. Choosing teas without caffeine helps your body stay hydrated, and can alleviate the boredom of drinking only water every day.
- Eat watery fruits and vegetables. Eating vegetables that contain a lot of water is another great way to hydrate yourself. Eat big salads filled with cucumbers, fresh bell peppers, and celery. Choose watermelon, strawberries, honeydew, and other watery fruits instead of eating baked desserts.
Week 14 - Preventing Stretch Marks
Moisturize your skin. Its important to use a moisturizer to hydrate the skin on your belly, sides, lower back, thighs, legs, and anywhere else you might get stretch marks. Regular lotion won't penetrate the skin deeply enough to keep it hydrated, so use a product specifically made for pregnant women, or choose a natural oil.
Bio oil, cocoa butter, almond oil, shea butter, and wheatgerm oil are popular and effective choices for moisturizing skin during pregnancy. Pure lanolin, which is made from the oils produced by sheep to keep their wool supple, also works very well.
Moisturize your skin in the morning after bathing and again at night. If you notice itching where your skin is being stretched, that is a sign to add more moisturizer in that area.
3. Eat a skin-nourishing diet.
You're probably already eating healthy, balanced meals to make sure your baby is getting enough vitamins and nutrients. Incorporating foods that are especially beneficial for the health of your skin can improve your skin's elasticity, which helps prevent stretch marks from forming. Add the following foods to your daily diet:
- Foods rich in antioxidants, which help nourish and protect skin. Eat plenty of spinach, blueberries, strawberries, and other fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Foods containing vitamin E, which protects skin cell membranes. Eat nuts, seeds, avocados broccoli, and collard greens.
- Foods containing vitamin A, which repairs skin tissues. Eat carrots, sweet potatoes, mango, squash, and red bell peppers.
- Foods containing omega 3s, which keep cell membranes healthy and make your skin glow. Eat fish, fish oil, walnuts, eggs and oysters.
4. DO NOT GAIN ACCESS WEIGHT!
You should only gain 25-30lbs during pregnancy. The main cause of stretch marks is weight gain.