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8 Things To Expect When You’re 8 Months Pregnant

8 Things To Expect When You’re 8 Months Pregnant
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The eighth month of pregnancy:  you’re almost there!  At this point, you’re eagerly anticipating having your baby in your arms.  Not only that, you’re probably beginning to feel pretty tired of pregnancy in general.  As your eighth month progresses, there are several symptoms that you should be prepared for. Here are just eight things to expect when you are 8 months pregnant.

1. Breathing will get difficult.

Your baby is compressing the space that would normally be occupied by your internal organs, so they’re all getting squished out of position. That includes your lungs, which are also working harder in the effort to bring in enough oxygen for you and your baby. If climbing a flight of stairs didn’t leave you a little out of breath before, it certainly will as you progress into your eighth month of pregnancy. This is the point where you should sit back, relax, and not be too hard on yourself. Some sources even recommend doing as little as possible, though that’s not a realistic recommendation for every woman.

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2. Your baby will probably turn head down.

This is the optimal delivery position. It also brings baby’s head into your bladder, where you’ll probably feel like baby is sitting all the time. Don’t worry: feeling as though you need to visit the bathroom every 15 minutes is perfectly normal. So is thinking that you’ve emptied your bladder only to stand up and realize that baby has shifted and it’s full again. Don’t use this as a reason to skip your water consumption, however! You and baby both need to stay hydrated.

3. Weight gain will slow down.

Many women discover that weight gain slows down in the eighth month of pregnancy. However, this isn’t true for everyone! If you’re gaining more than you’d like, try to look away from the scale, take deep breaths, and remember that this isn’t the time in your life to be worried about weight gain. It’s all for the baby in the end!

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4. You will experience heartburn.

As your stomach has increasingly less room, you might discover that small, frequent meals are the best way to keep heartburn to a minimum while still supplying the calories that you need. It’s likely that you won’t be able to eat as much as you usually can, and even your favorite foods will likely have to be consumed in moderation.

5. Your baby will begin growing much faster now.

This month, your baby weighs around four pounds. Within the next four to six weeks, baby will put on around half of its final birth weight. That means that you’re going to be growing, too–and growing increasingly more uncomfortable. Don’t be surprised when you need to slow down a lot more than you have previously throughout your pregnancy. Also, around this stage, you may find yourself refusing to take off your yoga pants, which is okay. They’re much more comfortable than any other piece of clothing you own and able to stretch to accommodate your growing belly–which at this stage of pregnancy is exactly what you need.

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6. Your breasts might leak.

If you haven’t already experienced yellowish fluid leaking from your breasts, this month may be when it starts. Your body is gearing up to produce milk for your baby. Colostrum will sustain your baby for the first few days after birth, until your milk comes in completely. If it happens to you earlier or later, don’t worry! When your milk starts to come in is no indication of whether or not you’re going to be able to feed your baby. Also, keep in mind that women experiencing their second, third, or later pregnancies are more likely to produce colostrum earlier.

7. Pillows are your best friend.

As your abdomen stretches, you may experience steadily more discomfort in your rib cage, pelvis, and abdomen. Toward the end of this month, you’ll feel like you’re running out of room in there! To help give yourself some relief, try propping up with several pillows. Lay on your side with one pillow under your head and neck, one pillow supporting your belly, and one between your knees. This will help take some of the strain off your body and make you feel more like yourself.

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8. You will experience mommy brain.

Have you had your first case of “mommy brain” yet? If you’re feeling generally fuzzy-brained and having trouble remembering things that you once took for granted, you’re not alone! Many moms-to-be experience difficulty focusing, concentrating, or remembering throughout their pregnancy and after the birth of the baby. What does this mean for you? Use the “notes” program on your smartphone or get used to writing things down.

The eighth month of pregnancy is often one of the most exciting. You’re getting close to the end, but you’re not yet so close that you’re counting down the days and wondering whether or not your baby will come on your due date. Many times friends and family will throw your baby shower close to the end of your eighth month so that you’ll have time to finish preparing for baby’s arrival. Enjoy this month of pregnancy as much as you can! Baby will be here before you know it.

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Featured photo credit: La Curva de la Felicidad/Niklas Montelius via flic.kr

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Paisley Hansen

Freelance Writer

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Published on July 22, 2021

20 Healthy and Tasty Family Meals Ideas to Try This Week

20 Healthy and Tasty Family Meals Ideas to Try This Week
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It’s 5 p.m., and you’re exhausted. The kids are hungry, but no one knows what they want to eat for dinner. With very little energy, you force yourself into the kitchen and look through every cabinet, hoping for a spark of inspiration. Eventually, you toss a few ingredients together and hope for the best. It won’t win any prizes and falls short of what you consider “healthy,” but it fills everyone’s stomachs.

Feeding a family can be stressful, even tiresome. It’s hard to find the energy and creativity needed to cook healthy but simple family meals. It’s easy to fall into the “anything goes” mentality. When you’ve got a busy lifestyle, meals become more about survival and less about nutrition.

Here are 20 quick and healthy—but tasty—recipes followed by tips on making these family meals more nutritious. These recipes can help you have a healthy family meal on the table in an hour or less. Remember, swap ingredients out if someone in your family has dietary restrictions or if you avoid certain foods.

1. Mini Meatloaves With Green Beans and Potatoes

    These miniature meatloaves come together quickly and cook faster, too. You can have a family favorite on the table, paired with seasoned potatoes and fresh green beans, in just 40 minutes.

    Get the recipe here.

    2. One-Pan Chicken Parmesan Pasta

      This classic will taste like you spent hours cooking, but the preparation and clean-up couldn’t be quicker. One-pot cooking makes this dish practical, while fresh basil, parmesan, and garlic add a special touch.

      To try this recipe, go here.

      3. Sheet-Pan Chicken Fajitas

        Skip the restaurant and make fajitas at home. The ingredients go on one sheet pan, meaning you won’t spend all night cleaning. Zesty chicken, bell peppers, and warm tortillas can be on the table in 40 minutes. Add sour cream, salsa, guacamole, lettuce, diced tomato, and any other favorite toppings.

        Check out the recipe here.

        4. Philly Cheese Steak Stuffed Peppers

          Lose the carbs but keep the cheesesteak flavors with this quick family meal. Kids will love the pepper “bowls,” and you’ll love giving them a meal full of veggies and protein to keep them healthy.

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          Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

          5. Chipotle Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowl

            This veggie-packed meal adds an extra boost by using the superfood quinoa instead of rice. Flavorful yet simple, this meal makes an excellent packable lunch or dinner for your whole family.

            Find the recipe here.

            6. Spinach and Chicken Skillet With Lemon and Parmesan

              The complex flavors of lemon and parmesan come together nicely in this gourmet-like dish, but you don’t have to exert the effort or spend as much as a gourmet meal.

              Get the recipe for this dish here.

              7. Oven-Fried Fish and Chips

                Fish and chips can also sometimes be healthy as evident in this oven-fried version. You won’t miss the calories with this favorite family meal.

                You can find the recipe here.

                8. Pineapple-Teriyaki Chicken

                  Tangy pineapple and sweet teriyaki will have everyone coming back for seconds. Frozen vegetables make this simple family dish even easier to make and enjoy.

                  Find the recipe here.

                  9. Mozzarella, Basil, and Zucchini Frittata

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                    This egg dish is usually served for breakfast, but a frittata can make a fantastic dinner, too. High in protein, packed with zucchini, and delicious, there’s no reason to wait until morning.

                    Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

                    10. Chicken and Sweet Potato Grill Packets

                      Skip the pans and throw everything into foil with this fun family recipe. Kids will love loading ingredients into their pack, and you’ll love its versatility and simplicity.

                      The recipe for this meal can be found here.

                      11. Chicken and Spanish “Rice”

                        Cauliflower takes the place of rice in this low-carb family meal, but it’s so flavorful and filling, no one will miss it.

                        Find the recipe here.

                        12. Honey Chicken Stir Fry

                          This honey chicken stir fry is the healthier version of a restaurant favorite that can be served up quicker than you can order it.

                          Find the recipe here.

                          13. Chicken Skewers With Tzatziki

                            Greek chicken and tzatziki sauce will have you yearning for the Mediterranean, but you can make this recipe at home for your family to enjoy.

                            This easy recipe can be found here.

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                            14. Healthy Walking Tacos

                              Traditional walking tacos are a party favorite, but they’re not usually healthy. However, this recipe keeps it fun while making it more nutritious.

                              Find out how to make it here.

                              15. Slow-Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

                                This classic comfort meal can be ready when you walk in the door. All you have to do is add noodles, and it’s ready to serve.

                                The recipe can be found here.

                                16. Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole

                                  This usually takes a little over an hour, but the preparation time is only 30 minutes. You’ll love how easy it is, and the cheesy rice is sure to please.

                                  Find the recipe here.

                                  17. Crockpot Rotisserie-Style Chicken

                                    Skip the checkout line and have a rotisserie-style chicken ready at home. A staple in many quick meals, you might find this family meal recipe among your most-used.

                                    Get the recipe for this flavorful chicken here.

                                    18. Santa Monica Street Tacos

                                      Named after a simple taco found on the streets of California, you’ll be surprised that something with only a few ingredients can be so flavorful. Your kids will surely enjoy them.

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                                      Find the recipe here.

                                      19. Pizza Pasta Salad

                                        Enjoy the flavor of pizza without the hassle of making a crust. Use a fun pasta shape to make this even more appealing to your family, especially kids.

                                        Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

                                        20. Slow-Cooker Lasagna Soup

                                          Everyone loves lasagna, but it can be time-consuming and messy to make. However, this soup version has the taste you want but with the ease of a crockpot.

                                          Get the recipe here.

                                          Bonus: 3 Simple Ways to Make Meals Healthier

                                          Eating healthy doesn’t have to take a lot of money, time, or thought. Any improvements are a big step in the right direction.

                                          Here are three easy ways you can make meals healthier for your family.

                                          1. Lose the Sugar

                                          Are you looking to improve your health? Cut processed sugars from your diet—the more, the better, and that includes artificial sweeteners.[1] Why? Studies show that sugar increases the risks for weight gain, heart disease, acne, type-2 diabetes, depression, cancer, fatty liver disease, cellular aging, and low energy levels.[2]

                                          2. Avoid Highly Processed Foods

                                          Many processed foods are fine to eat. Even fresh fruit and vegetables go through some processing to stay fresh longer. However, highly processed foods have added salt, sweeteners, saturated fats, preservatives, and artificial colors. These types of food have been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure.[3]

                                          3. Replace Simple Carbs for Complex Carbs

                                          Lowering daily carbs can do wonders for your health. Studies show that low-carb diets lead to lower insulin levels, lower bad cholesterol levels, visceral fat loss, weight loss, reduced appetite, and can be therapeutic for many brain disorders.[4]

                                          When eating carbs, choose complex carbs over simple carbs. Simple carbs, such as white flour, rice, and degermed cornmeal, lack nutrients and spike blood sugar levels. Complex carbs, such as sweet potato, brown rice, and oats, are usually more nutritious and aren’t digested as quickly, giving more sustained energy and less of an insulin spike.[5]

                                          Enjoy Family Meals With Less Stress!

                                          Dinner can be enjoyable again now that you’re armed with simple and nutritious recipes for your family. These healthy and tasty family meal recipes can help you feel even better about what you serve. Best of all, you’ll have the extra time and energy you saved from cooking and spend more time with your family.

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                                          More Healthy Eating Tips

                                          Featured photo credit: Jimmy Dean via unsplash.com

                                          Reference

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