Pregnancy Articles

Week 7: Playing it Safe

Your Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy

Your Baby This Week

Your baby's growth spurt is officially beginning, though it's not something you can see or feel. At the start of the week your baby measures between 0.16" to 0.2" (4 to 5 mm), but by the end of the week he or she can be half an inch (1.3 cm) long!

Your baby's heart is growing larger-from all of your love-creating a small bulge on his or her tiny body. The right and left chambers of the heart begin to form, along with air passages to the lungs. Although your baby's eyes and nose are still on this side of his or her head, they are beginning to develop. The brain is also starting to partition itself into chambers. While the appendix is already in place, the intestines remain partly in the umbilical cord and won't ascend into your baby's abdomen for a few more weeks. Tiny buds that will become legs begin to form, and the arm buds begin growing. These are already dividing into two sections--one that will form the hand and another that will form the arm and shoulder.

Your Body This Week

You may have gained a pound or two, or you may have lost weight. Both are normal. If you had morning sickness last week, it will likely continue. If you can't eat very much you may be losing weight. Don't be alarmed - it's still considered normal, and that weight loss will reverse itself in the coming weeks!

Playing it Safe with Exercise

Your body is going through a lot of changes right now and will be going through even more dramatic changes in the coming months. In this relatively fragile stage, paying extra attention to exercise safety is a must. While you shouldn't be afraid to be active, try to pay attention to these four body-friendly strategies when working out:
  • Check with your doctor
  • Know your exertion and heart rate limits
  • Avoid exercises that stress the joints or may involve high impact
  • Stay cool and hydrated
Read more about exercise safety tips.

What's Safe To Eat? What's Not?

Grandmothers, aunts and mothers are full of good intentions. They can pamper and support you like nobody else can. But they can also be full of conflicting--and sometimes incorrect--information. What you can and can't eat while you're pregnant has always been a source of contention and any number of old wives' tales. We've done the research and have the answers that can put your mind at ease once and for all. For starters: Fish is OK, if you're careful. But soft, unpasteurized cheeses and lunchmeats should be off-limits. (Cream cheese, ricotta and cottage cheese are perfectly safe, so slather a low-fat version on your morning bagel. Avoid mold-ripened cheese like Brie and Camembert, and blue-veined cheese, such as Stilton or Gorgonzola.) And coffee is fine in moderation. Read more about meat, cheese and fish during pregnancy.
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