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    Those tiny fingers and toes are a big deal.

    An embryo with toes and fingers in the eighth week

    Your baby’s development

    Toes and fingers develop, while the face gets more defined.
    When you're between 7 and 8 weeks pregnant, your baby's body parts and proportions continue to develop and change quickly.

    Here's what's going on during your 8th week:

    • Your baby is now more than 1/2 an inch long — about the length of a lima bean.
    • Tiny fingers and toes develop.
    • Arms and legs grow longer.
    • Wrists, elbows, and ankles are visible.
    • His eyelids form, and his ears, upper lip, and tip of the nose become more defined.
    A piece of cheese

    Your nutrition and health

    To eat it, or not to eat it. That is the question.
    As your body changes throughout pregnancy, it's important to adjust your exercise regimen and diet. As always, speak to your doctor about the right changes for you and your growing baby.

    There are many things you should do more of throughout your pregnancy — from eating different foods to participating in new activities. However, there are also certain things you’ll want to do less of. An alcohol- and tobacco-free lifestyle will reduce the risk of disease and health defects in your unborn baby, and can improve your health during and after pregnancy.

    Most doctors agree that the consumption of caffeine should be limited. This includes limiting sugar-sweetened sodas containing caffeine. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggests limiting caffeine to 200 mg per day, which is about two 8-ounce cups of coffee. Ask your doctor about how much caffeine you can have daily.

    According to ACOG 2010 guidelines and the Position Paper of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and FDA, artificial sweeteners (aspartame, sucralose, acesulfame-K, and stevia) are safe to use in moderation. If you normally consume diet soda containing nonnutritive sweeteners, the caffeine content still counts.

    Incorporate certain foods into your diet safely

    Some foods can help you and your baby get the essential nutrients you need during pregnancy, but not all varieties are healthy.

    • Eating fatty fish, such as salmon, is a great way to get your omega-3 fatty acids, which are an important component for your baby's brain and neurological development. Avoid shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish. They contain high levels of mercury that may potentially harm your unborn baby. The FDA and EPA have updated recommendations regarding how much fish can be safely consumed during pregnancy (hint: it’s higher than before). Read more.
    • Refrigerated pate or meat spreads from a meat counter can also cause health problems, as can store-made salads — ham salad, chicken salad, egg salad, tuna salad, or seafood salad.
    • Raw (unpasteurized) milk, along with any food products that contain unpasteurized milk, might contain Listeria, which is capable of crossing the placenta and infecting your baby.
    • Do not eat soft cheeses like feta, queso blanco, Brie, Camembert, blue-veined cheeses, and Panela unless they are clearly labeled "made with pasteurized milk".
    A woman smiling while raising both arms in the air

    Things to think about now

    Considering the following? You may want to reconsider:
    • Activities that could cause you to fall, or that put pressure or force on your belly
    • Overly vigorous, intense exercise — if you're too out of breath to talk, you're probably exercising too hard.
    • Saunas and hot tubs
    • Certain over-the-counter and prescription medications (talk with your doctor about what's safe during pregnancy)
    • Exposure to chemicals and fumes from paints, cleaning products, and solvents. Latex or acrylic paint generally is considered safe. But check with your doctor so you can safely and confidently help with preparing the nursery or other projects around the house.

    What happens next week

    Your second doctor visit is approaching, when you’ll listen for your baby’s heartbeat. Also during this week, your baby’s skeleton is forming.