It seems like just yesterday I was giving unsolicited pregnancy advice to Kate Middleton – and look how well things turned out for her, delivering beautiful, healthy Prince George.
I also gave a little piece of my mind to Snooki, in the heyday of her pregnancy, and I’m glad she listened to me – because again, look how great things are turning out for her, as she prepares to welcome her second child.
Now, of course, it is time for me to give some medical advice to Chelsea Clinton.
First and foremost, congrats! I have always had a great admiration for the Clinton family; to me, they are the closest thing we have to a royal family this century in the United States. Chelsea Clinton is now reportedly in her second trimester– an important time in any woman’s pregnancy. This is a time when the fetus is gaining weight, and of course all of the baby’s organs are beginning to develop and progress towards functioning at full capacity.
Several things need to be kept in mind during the second trimester. First, mothers should watch their weight, which can be done by maintaining a balanced diet, filled with complex carbs, lean proteins, vegetables and some healthy oils. While Chelsea Clinton was a vegetarian for many years, reports indicate that the 34-year-old started eating meat again in her late 20s. However, a vegetarian diet, if done properly, is perfectly healthy for a pregnant woman and provides plenty of plant proteins and vitamins that are incredibly healthy for the baby.
The other important factor for pregnant women in their second trimester is to make sure they maintain normal blood pressure levels. Monitoring salt intake is important not only for healthy blood pressure, but also to avoid excessive swelling. And certainly, getting good sleep and rest is essential. Public figures, like Chelsea, may have a tougher time getting those zzz’s, so it might be beneficial to her to amend her busy schedule.
It will also be crucial for Chelsea to avoid negative stress during her pregnancy. Now that her mother might be running for president, it’s likely that Chelsea will read and hear many unflattering stories about Hillary Clinton. I encourage her not to pay attention. Negative stress can literally make you sick, in addition to increasing pregnancy anxiety and post-partum depression.
During the second trimester, patients should also be aware of the signs of symptoms of premature labor. While we don’t know much about the mechanisms behind premature labor, we do know a lot about the symptoms. They include back pain, frequent contractions that tend to cover the entire girth of the abdomen, atypical vaginal discharge and pelvic pressure. These symptoms should not be ignored and should be checked out by an obstetrician as soon as possible.
Finally, I will say that I’m very happy for this couple; there’s nothing like bringing a new life into the world. For Hillary and Bill Clinton, there will be nothing more gratifying than to see that their legacy carried on by future generations. I hope that we give this couple the privacy that they deserve, while at the same time, sending them all our love and good thoughts.
Dr. Manny Alvarez serves as Fox News Channel's senior managing health editor. He also serves as chairman of the department of obstetrics/gynecology and reproductive science at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. Click here for more information on Dr. Manny's work with Hackensack University Medical Center. Visit AskDrManny.com for more.