Fatigue and pregnancy seem to go hand in hand. In the early stages of pregnancy, the body is using more energy to regulate hormones and develop using more energy and causing fatigue. Usually, once the second trimester rolls around, energy is more consistent. Towards the end of the pregnancy, fatigue is experienced as the body is carrying excess weight and the position of the baby may prove it to be hard to sleep through the night. In TICM, we like to use all the signals our body is sharing with us to improve our physical and mental experience. Pregnancy is such a special time, all the senses and emotions are heightened, so use those to your advantage. Below are the deficiencies and symptoms experienced with tips on how to strengthen the body. Qi (vital energy) and Yang (warm) deficiency: fatigue that is worse after exertion and better with rest. With Yang deficiency you will also feel cold. Tips: manage emotions like over worry, dress warmly especially covering ankles, Stomach, neck, go to sleep early, limit cold and raw foods, eat soups, stews, congee, don't overwork or over worry. Yin deficiency: fatigue, restlessness, and heat signs, like hot flashes or night sweats. Tips: ground your energy with meditation, breathwork and prenatal classes instead of seeking stimulating exercise; keep Blood sugar balanced with smaller, more frequent meals; refrain from excess sugar; use foods like mango, seaweeds, bone broths, beans and fish.
Liver Qi stagnation: fatigue that is worse with inactivity and stress. Tips: walk in nature, engage in creatively fulfilling activities; manage your emotions through journaling, speaking to a professional, acupuncture, etc. Liver Blood deficiency: fatigue, weakness, dry skin, pale lips, and poor memory. Tips: eat iron rich foods and proteins and broths; avoid cold or raw foods as it slows down the metabolism, hurting Blood supply. Use Schisandra extract (Wu Wei Zi) to support you and help treat fatigue. This five flavour adaptogenic berry supports the five organ systems, hormones, hypothalamus, pituitary gland, ovaries, and adrenals. Always speak to your physician in regards to your pregnancy symptoms and before starting on any new additions to your lifestyle or regimen during this time.