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Pregnancy Week 2

Isn't it odd that you are in the second week of pregnancy, but you're not really pregnant? But remember pregnancy is counted from the first day of your last menstrual cycle, and you ovulate 14 days before the next menstrual cycle is due. So at the end of this week at the most fertile time, you are going to ovulate and maybe conceive. Whether you are going to conceive, you still must act as though you are pregnant, and take care of yourself. Therefore it is at the end of week two that you really conceive, that is if you've had the regular 28-day menstrual cycles.

Ovulation is when the egg or ovum is released from an ovary into the fallopian tube. If at that time you have intercourse, you can become pregnant. It's during this intercourse that your partner will ejaculate and release millions of sperms, which will swim through the vagina and uterus, towards the fallopian tube. Meanwhile on ovulation, the egg is released into the fallopian tube, and it's highly likely one of the millions of sperms will fertilize the egg at this point. As soon as one sperm enters the ovum, it creates a barrier so that no other sperm can enter it anymore. You can say the chance of you conceiving at this point is millions to one! Of course other factors like health and fertility of both partners has to be considered.

Even when conception has taken place, you will not know it through any physical change within yourself. Some of you who are more sensitive may have a feeling sense that it has happened. Say you've conceived, then how is the gender of the child determined?

The gender of the baby is determined by the father, and not by the mother, as people thought in the olden days. The ovum has only one type of sex chromosome, and it is the X chromosome. Whereas the sperm can either have X or Y chromosome, when X-chromosome sperm fuses with the X-chromosome ovum, the resulting fertilized egg has XX chromosomes, which will produce a female child. On the other hand if a Y-chromosome sperm were to fertilize the X-chromosome ovum, the child that comes from that union has XY, which is will produce a male child.

Once fertilization takes place, the resulting cell that is called a fertilized egg or zygote will divide into two cells, and each of the two divides again into four cells. This is the blastocyte stage. This process repeats and each time the number of cells doubles, from one to two to four to eight and so on. The fertilized egg undergoes development as it moves down the fallopian tube towards the uterus ready for implantation. By the time it reaches the uterus it has divided about five times and there are a total of 32 cells.

It is during this period and even before that, you start to ensure that your diet at this point is rich in especially Folic acid, which is important for the development of the neural tube. If you must take Vitamins out of a bottle, consider the pre-natal ones. Foods rich in folic acid are potato, whole grains; soya products such as tofu, and soya bean drink; lentils, beans, dals; spinach, beetroot asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, beetroot; oranges, bananas and peaches. As folic acid is easily destroyed in heat, eat the fruits and vegetables raw.

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