Your baby’s development - week 23

 Week 23 mum in kitchen cutting up food

At 23 weeks pregnant your baby is now practising breathing by inhaling amniotic fluid into their developing lungs, and they’ll also grasp at your umbilical cord whenever they feel it. Around this time, most mums feel an increase in movement, kicking and even hiccups from their baby. As the skin develops, oil and sweat glands start to work. Your baby is now 29cm long or more, and weighs about 1lb 1oz.

You & your body

You and your growing baby need calcium for strong, healthy bones and teeth. It’s also important for the healthy functioning of your muscular, circulatory and nervous systems.

Your body may need more calcium in pregnancy, but the good thing is that your body is more efficient at using it during this time. The best way to be sure you have enough is with a healthy, varied diet, including calcium-rich foods like cheese, milk, yogurt, sardines, sesame seeds, watercress, tofu, cereals and figs.

To help boost your calcium levels, drink the milk in your cereal bowl, have a yogurt mid-morning, a glass of milk with your dinner and grate some cheese on top of a salad. Try cooking with these foods too. Non-dairy sources of calcium include tinned salmon, green leafy vegetables and baked beans.

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Did you know?

Low-fat or skimmed milk contains the same amount of calcium as regular, whole milk. Switch to low-fat dairy foods and you’ll be top of the calcium chart without overdoing the calories.

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