Hydration is always important, and during pregnancy those fluids are even more precious than usual. Your body needs water to form amniotic fluid, produce extra blood volume, build new tissue, carry nutrients, help indigestion and flush out your wastes and toxins. (Baby’s too!) Drinking lots of fluids during pregnancy can work wonders, easing constipation (and therefore hemorrhoids), softening skin, reducing edema and decreasing risk of both urinary tract infections and preterm labor. Pregnant women should aim to drink 10 cups (2.3 liters) of fluids each day, according to the Mayo Clinic. If it's hot or you’ve been exercising, you probably need even more.
If the thought of all that water makes you grimace, don't worry—you’re free to include other fluids. Milk, juice, soup, sparkling water and decaf tea all count, and fruits and veggies even add to the tally (five servings of produce = two servings of fluid).
Generally, if you're drinking enough fluids so that you rarely feel thirsty and your urine is colorless or light yellow, you're probably doing a good job at staying hydrated.