Ready to take the plunge into parenthood? You can start by preparing your body for baby.

First, talk to your doctor and share any health conditions, lifestyle behaviors (such as smoking or alcohol use), and medication or vaccination history that might get in the way
of either getting pregnant or having a healthy pregnancy. To help prevent birth defects of the spine and brain, women should ask about taking 400 micrograms of folic acid every day for a month before trying to get pregnant. Also, getting pregnant at a healthy weight lowers a woman’s risk for developing gestational diabetes and other pregnancy-related problems. A little planning can make a big difference for your baby’s future.

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