It is rarely the couple’s fault if a miscarriage happens. About 15% of pregnancies suffer miscarriage and the causes cannot be ascertained.
There are 3 main factors to watch that can contribute to the risk of a miscarriage: lifestyle, diet, and the health condition of the mother.
One’s lifestyle must change once pregnancy is confirmed:
1. There is evidence that suggests smoking and even secondhand smoke increases the risk of miscarriage or stillbirth
2. A study by the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, showed that a consumption of 200 milligrams or more of caffeine per day (about two cups of regular coffee or 60 oz of caffeinated soda) doubles the risk of miscarriage.
3. Alcohol has been found to interfere with the developmental process of the fetus. Consuming alcohol during pregnancy can cause “fetal alcohol syndrome” wherein mental and physical defects of the baby are traced to alcohol consumption.
4. Exercise as well as other physical activities must be moderated. Avoid exercises that will strain your abdomen.
5. Too much stress, mental and emotional, has been indirectly linked to miscarriage.
A healthy diet contributes to the proper development of the fetus as well as the physical capability of the mother to sustain life inside her.
1. High consumption of partially hydrogenated fats, as margarine and lard, has been found to interfere with normal body function, potentially contributing to miscarriage risks.
2. There is a direct correlation between miscarriage and food poisoning. Reduce your risk of food poisoning. The most common bacteria are Listeria, Salmonella, Toxoplasma, and E. coli. Listeria in particular has been known to cause stillbirths.
Foods to avoid as they may harbor any of these bacteria:
- Pasteurized milk and cheeses
- Imported soft cheeses, like Brie, Gorgonzola, Feta, and Roquefort
- Deli Meats
- Refrigerated, smoked seafood eaten on its own
- Refrigerated pate or meat spreads
- Undercooked chicken, turkey, or eggs harbor salmonella
- E coli are present in unwashed fruits and vegetables, and dirty water
3. Eating whole grains, fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of pregnancy complications. Supplements as folic acid, vitamin E, and iron among support the development of the fetus.
More than avoidance, focus on eating healthy and enough. Eat sugar in moderation to avoid developing complications like diabetes.
The mother’s health condition before pregnancy is a major consideration.
1. Diabetes presents many risks to pregnant women: hypertension, polyhydramnios (too much amniotic fluid), and vascular diseases that may result in miscarriage.
2. “Chemical pregnancies” or what is mistaken for false pregnancies are actually miscarriages at a very early period. Pregnancies confirmed outside of the lab (e.g. EPT) at a very early stage after which a woman starts to bleed is called a chemical pregnancy.
3. Thyroid problems, heart disease, sexually transmitted diseases are all risk factors in miscarriage. Prenatal check-ups will help address unknown health issues that can put the pregnancy at risk.