What are the advantages and disadvantages of drinking too much water during pregnancy?

Water is important for almost all functions of the body, including keeping the organs hydrated and running, and maintaining overall health. It is also vital to stay hydrated during pregnancy.

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According to nutritionist Pritika Bedi, founder of Healthsake, water supplies oxygen and necessary nutrients to a pregnant woman’s cells, tissues, and organs, as well as the baby. All prenatal vitamins must be transported to the baby via water.

“To generate amniotic fluid, make more blood, develop new tissue, transport nutrients, improve digestion, and flush out wastes and toxins, pregnant women require more water than others. But, there are some disadvantages of drinking too much water,” she warns.

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Bedi lists the pros and cons of consuming water in excess; read on.

Pros of drinking water

“During pregnancy, water keeps your body hydrated. Cramps, headaches, nausea, and other symptoms may occur if the body is not hydrated. While your baby is developing, drink water. Make sure you drink water every day to avoid constipation, a common ailment among pregnant women.

“Water consumption helps prevent water retention. Additionally, preterm labor and contractions can be avoided if you drink enough water in the third trimester. It maintains track of the body’s temperature and cools it down, while also giving relief from morning sickness, acidity, and heartburn,” she explains.

Make sure you drink water every day to avoid constipation, a common ailment among pregnant women. (Photo: Getty/Thinkstock)

Cons of drinking too much water

Bedi says drinking excessive water can make you feel exhausted, and that “your kidneys may have to work even harder”, resulting in a “stressful hormonal reaction that makes the body anxious and tired”.

“When you drink too much water, your electrolyte levels drop, and your body’s balance is disrupted. When electrolyte levels are low, symptoms including muscle soreness and cramping can occur. Water intoxication can occur when women consume a big amount of water in a short period of time. Side effects include confusion, drowsiness, and headaches,” she concludes.

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