Food and Exercise During Pregnancy Explained for Students in Sport and Nutrition Training

sport and nutrition trainingIf you enjoy working with people and have an interest in activities that promote health, a career in sport and nutrition may be right for you. Whether you want to work in fitness, become a health coach, or pursue opportunities in healthcare, it will be useful to have an understanding of the types of exercise and nutrition that support pregnancy.

During pregnancy, parents will likely experience a range of emotions, and feel both excited and nervous throughout. As a sport and nutrition professional, you can help. What kinds of questions might come up and how should you answer them? Keep reading to find out!

Use Your Sport Nutrition Certificate to Support Healthy Exercise

According to the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP), a group of professional scientists who study exercise physiology and other health topics, “physical activity is now seen as a critical part of a healthy pregnancy.” Their recommendations include:

  • Engaging in moderate physical activity at least three days per week
  • A total of at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week
  • A variety of types of exercise or physical activity

Their research shows exercise is linked to reducing the possible health risks specific to pregnancy. After you complete a nutrition diploma program in Ontario, you may support pregnant clients by creating exercise plans. Such plans may be based on the knowledge you gained through professional training and your expert understanding of these kinds of guidelines.

Exercise is important for pregnant clients

Exercise is important for pregnant clients

Your support will also include making sure pregnant clients check in with medical professionals to ensure their exercise plans are appropriate for their overall health, because there are exceptional cases in which exercise should be avoided.

Provide Official Sources of Information

After sport and nutrition training, where students learn about people’s health throughout the life cycle, you will understand the importance of providing clients with accurate information for their needs. If you have clients who are pregnant, in addition to consulting with them, you can refer them to official information from Health Canada. For example, The Sensible Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy covers:

  • Prenatal nutrition
  • Folic acid
  • Oral health
  • The Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program…and more!

Overall, it is a useful resource that clients can easily reference, and it will bolster any information you provide during sessions. While you will have an understanding of important principles and knowledge about pre-pregnancy and pregnancy nutrition needs, encouraging clients to be aware of official information about specialized needs is the professional choice.

Give your clients all the information they need, including links to extra resources

Give your clients all the information they need, including links to extra resources

General Prenatal Nutrition

Similar to exercise, the role of healthy meals and snacks is major. As a sport and nutrition professional, you will want to support clients in maintaining their health throughout their life cycle, including the nine months of pregnancy. What do pregnant clients need in their diet? With the exceptional list of foods to avoid while pregnant, the answer is not so different from what everyone needs to eat on a regular basis:

  • Fruits and vegetables every day for vitamins
  • Meat or meat alternatives for protein
  • Milk or milk alternatives for calcium
  • Grains, and especially whole grains for fiber and other nutrients

Use your nutrition knowledge to come up with healthy plans for pregnant clients

Use your nutrition knowledge to come up with healthy plans for pregnant clients

Early in your training, you will become familiar with the fundamentals of nutrition, including the six categories of nutrients and how they affect human health. This kind of knowledge will be relevant and useful for understanding the needs of pregnant individuals when it comes to the roles of diet and exercise.

Want to know more about getting a sport nutrition certificate?

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