what to eat during pregnant

What to eat during pregnant?

 
what to eat during pregnant

What to eat during pregnant?

What to eat during pregnant?

Pregnancy is a fantastic opportunity to overhaul your diet and improve your intake habits so that you and your baby can get all the vitamins and minerals you require. It can be tempting, but do try to avoid using your changing body shape as an excuse to overindulge on sugary and fatty snacks. If you’re already overweight, talk to your doctor or a dietitian to devise a healthy and sustainable eating plan that will take you through pregnancy and breastfeeding and beyond.

Earlier generations of expectant women used to talk about the importance of ‘eating for two’, but there is no need to increase your food intake in the first trimester of pregnancy. In the second trimester, women of a normal healthy weight need only increase their daily intake by 1400 kilojoules and, in the third, by a total of an extra 1900 kilojoules (a couple of nutritious snacks) to ensure the additional energy requirements are met.

what to eat during pregnant

what to eat during pregnant

What to eat?

The following essential vitamins and minerals all have a part to play in your baby’s development and your body’s ability to carry a healthy pregnancy. Include these in your diet to ensure you and your baby stay in great shape.

Vitamin A (Beta-Carotene)

Vital for the development of cells and tissues, vision and immune system.

Sources:

  • Fruit and vegetables (especially orange and yellow ones, and leafy greens)
  • Fortified milk
  • Cereals

Too much vitamin A may lead to an increased risk of birth defects, so it’s recommended you avoid eating vitamin A-rich liver during pregnancy.

Vitamin B6

Consuming protein, fats and carbohydrates can boosts your body’s metabolism. This vitamin also helps convert amino acids and create new red blood cells, antibodies plus neurotransmitters, and is vital for the healthy development of your baby’s brain and nervous system. Vitamin B6 may also relieve nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

Sources:

  • Brown rice
  • Lean meats
  • Poultry
  • Fish
  • Avocados
  • Whole grains
  • Beans
  • Corn
  • Nuts

Vitamin B12

This activates folate in your body, so is essential for your baby’s development.

Sources:

  • Dairy products
  • Meat
  • Fish
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

Vitamin C

Crucial for the collagen in your baby’s connective tissue, bones and teeth, and for developing his tissue, bones and blood vessels. Vitamin C also assists your absorption of iron from fruit and vegetables.

Sources:

  • Citrus
  • Tomatoes
  • Red Capsicums
  • Potatoes
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach
  • Pineapple
  • Kiwifruit
  • Rockmelon

Vitamin D

Helps your body absorb calcium and strengthens your immune system.

Sources:

  • Sunlight is the main source of vitamin D, but you still need to be sun smart and avoid being exposed during the hottest times of the day.

Calcium

Important for bones and teeth, as well as your baby’s muscles, heart and nerve development.

Sources:

  • Dairy products
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Legumes
  • Nuts (such as almonds)
  • Tahini

Fibre

Essential for healthy bowel movement and for preventing constipation and haemorrhoids.

Sources:

  • Legumes (such as black beans and lentils)
  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Wholegrain cereals and bread

Folate

This is essential for your baby’s neural tube development.

Sources:

  • Lentils
  • Dried beans and peas
  • Dark green vegetables
  • Asparagus
  • Citrus fruit
  • Folic acid-fortified cereals and breads

Iodine

Your baby needs this to grow and develop. Inadequate iodine intake during pregnancy increases the risk of mental and physical impairment in newborn babies.

Sources:

  • Seafood
  • Seaweed
  • Eggs
  • Meat
  • Dairy products
  • Iodised table salt and bread

Iron

During the second and third trimesters of your pregnancy, the iron your baby draws from you is critical because it must maintain his needs for the first six months of his life.

Sources:

  • Legumes (canned/dried peas or beans)
  • Iron-fortified and wholegrain cereals
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Tofu
  • Hummus
  • Iron-fortified bread

Omega-3

This contains essential fatty acids that are important for the formation of every cell in the body and is necessary for your baby’s nerve and brain development.

Sources:

  • Oily fish (such as salmon, trout and sardines)
  • Pumpkin seeds (Pepitas)
  • Flaxseed Oil
  • Walnuts

Zinc

This mineral is particularly important for the rapid cell growth that takes place during pregnancy. Zinc also supports your immune system and DNA function.

Sources:

  • Dairy products
  • Legumes
  • Beans and nuts
  • Wholegrain products (rice or bread)
  • Fortified cereals
  • Red meat
  • Chicken

Unsaturated fats, oil, sugar & salt

Consumed in small amounts, these foods are necessary for maintaining a balanced diet. Try cooking with vegetable oils can work to reduce your cholesterol level. Also, using a cooking oil spray will help to reduce your intake.

When you need a sweet hit, try to stay away from sugary snacks and instead opt for fresh fruit. And if you already suffer from hypertension, monitoring your salt intake will help to keep your blood pressure in check.

what to eat during pregnant

what to eat during pregnant

More 12 posts in Health category
Recommended for you
how to boost fertility
10 Steps on how to boost fertility

In the Western world about one-third of all cases of infertility are due to female...