Needless to say, when you’re growing a kid, you would like to be certain you’re doing all you can to give your little one the ideal start. We’ve got some tricks for making a smarter, happier baby.
Were you aware, when you’re pregnant, your daily diet, emotions and how you interact with your bulge play a part in developing your growing infant’s brain.
‘Inherited genes play a major role in determining intelligence and character, but also the ideal lifestyle choices can help ensure those genes have been programmed from the womb,’ says Dr Lana Asprey. In reality, ‘researchers now estimate that only 50 percent of IQ is right down to genes — the remainder is influenced by a infant’s surroundings’ So what are you waiting for? Make sure your baby inherits your braininess, now.
1. Begin a storytime custom
The foundations for language start in the womb and, from the third trimester, your baby might memorise sounds she hears regularly. ‘US researchers asked moms to see The Cat In The Hat to their unborn babies. Following the birth, the infants “decided” the recording of the mommy reading the narrative by sucking at a certain rate to trigger the recording,’ says parenting expert Dr Miriam Stoppard.
2. Stay busy
Love the endorphin boost you get from exercise? Well, so does your infant. Hormones released during exercise cross over the placenta, bathing your infant in feel-good chemicals for as many as eight hours. Plus, as exercise increases the circulation of blood around your body, including to the uterus, your child’s development is given a boost.
The most recent study also indicates exercise while pregnant can raise neurons within your baby’s hippocampus — the memory and learning component of the brain — by 40 per cent.
3. Get just a little sunshine
Never has sunlight vitamin, Vitamin D, been so important. And you simply have to soak this up for 20 minutes a day. ‘We test each of the pregnant mums who come to our clinic for vitamin D, and 70 percent are deficient,’ says fertility specialist Zita West. ‘That’s due to a mixture of a lack of sunlight and not getting enough vitamin D in their diet.’
This nutrient is critical for helping your baby develop strong heart and bones, and researchers have also started investigating a connection between a deficiency of vitamin D in elderly women and atherosclerosis.
4. Heal your baby
From about 20 months, your infant will feel that you touching your bump and stroking it may send messages that are calming into her nervous system. Research suggests an unborn baby can even differentiate between her mother and daddy’s touch. Pass the almond oil. This is the best excuse to get a massage.
5. Talk to your baby
Infants can hear from 16 weeks and, by 27 months, all the connections from ear to brain are set up,’ says Miriam. In actuality, studies reveal newborns react to languages or squares they hear in the uterus — those born to bilingual families respond to the two languages from birth, so begin chatting!
6. Vary your diet
If you want your baby to have the gourmet palate of an intellect, then get adventurous at dinnertime. Your child’s taste buds develop from approximately 12 months.
From 25 weeks, she will be absorbing around two litres of amniotic fluid a day along with the foods you eat can flavour it. In one study, babies of mums who drank carrot juice while pregnant showed a preference for carrots when weaned.
7. Play audio to your bump
Maybe the most important education of all you can form your child’s music preference. ‘Unborn babies adore music — it will help trigger happy chemicals, like serotonin, which encourage her to be calm and contented,’ says Miriam. ‘After the arrival, your baby recalls and relives all those great feelings connected to the music each time she hears it’
8. Start singing nursery rhymes
Yep, you can get into this habit today. ‘We understand unborn babies can pick up the rise and drop and cadences in speech,’ says Miriam. ‘You can assist your infant tune from singing rhythmic tunes — nursery rhymes are ideal.’ After your baby’s born, then sing exactly the same zest to quieten and irritate her.