Naturally, when you’re growing a baby, you need to be certain you’re doing whatever you can to give your little one the ideal start. We have got some tips for creating a brighter, happier baby.
Were you aware, once you’re pregnant, your diet, feelings and how you interact with your bulge all play a part in developing your growing infant’s mind.
‘Inherited genes play an important function in determining intelligence and character, but also the right lifestyle choices can help guarantee those genes are programmed in the womb,’ says Dr Lana Asprey. In reality, ‘scientists estimate that only 50 per cent of IQ is right down to genes — the remainder is influenced by a baby’s environment.’ What exactly are you waiting for? Ensure your baby inherits your braininess, now.
1. Start a storytime custom
The bases for speech begin in the uterus and, by the third trimester, your baby can memorise noises she hears regularly. ‘US investigators asked moms to read The Cat In The Hat repeatedly to their unborn infants. After the birth, the infants “decided” the record of the mommy reading the narrative by sucking on at a certain rate to activate the recording,’ says parenting expert Dr Miriam Stoppard.
2. Stay active
Enjoy the endorphin boost you get from exercise? Well, so does your infant. Hormones released during workout cross the placenta, bathing your baby in feel-good chemicals for as many as eight hours. And as exercise increases the flow of blood all around your body, for example to the womb, your child’s growth is provided a boost.
The latest study also indicates exercise while pregnant can raise neurons within your child’s hippocampus — the learning and memory part of the mind — by 40 per cent.
3. Get just a little sun
Never has sunlight vitamin, Vitamin D, been significant. And you just have to soak it up for 20 minutes a day. ‘We examine each of the pregnant mums who come to our practice because of vitamin D, and 70 per cent are deficient,’ says fertility expert Zita West. ‘That is because of a combination of a lack of sunshine and not getting enough vitamin D in their diet’
This nutrient is vital for helping your baby develop strong heart and bones, and researchers have also started exploring a link between a deficiency of vitamin D in elderly women and atherosclerosis.
4. Massage your baby
From approximately 20 months, your infant will feel that you touching your bump and stroking it can send calming messages to her nervous system. Research suggests an unborn baby can also differentiate between her mother and father’s signature. Pass the almond oil. Here is the very best excuse for a massage ever.
5. Talk to your baby
Infants can hear from 16 months and, even by 27 months, all the links from ear to mind are in place,’ says Miriam. In reality, studies reveal newborns respond to accents or languages they hear in the womb — people born into bilingual families react to the two languages from birth, so begin chatting!
6. Vary your diet
If you want your baby to have the gourmet feeling of an intellect, then get adventurous at dinnertime. Your baby’s taste buds develop from approximately 12 months.
By 25 months, she’ll be consuming around two litres of amniotic fluid per day and the foods that you consume can flavour it. In one study, infants of mums who drank carrot juice while pregnant showed a taste for carrots when weaned.
7. Play audio to your bump
Perhaps the most crucial instruction of all — you can shape your baby’s music preference. ‘Unborn babies love music — it will help trigger happy chemicals, such as serotonin, that inspire her to be calm and happy,’ says Miriam. ‘Following the birth, your baby recalls and relives all those good feelings associated with the music each time she hears it.’
8. Start singing nursery rhymes
Yep, you’ll enter this habit today. ‘We know unborn babies can pick up the rise and fall and cadences in language,’ says Miriam. ‘You can help your baby song in by singing rhythmic tunes — nursery rhymes are perfect.’ Following your baby’s born, sing exactly the same rhymes to quieten and soothe her.