It is always important to have a healthy and nutritious diet; however during pregnancy, this is especially important. Pregnancy is a very special and important time in any woman’s life because she has life growing inside her and will soon give birth.
This is new life is fragile and very delicate, and since the body goes through a roller coaster ride of hormonal and physical changes, it weakens the immune system overall. As such a pregnant woman is more susceptible to illnesses than a woman who is not. With that in mind it is very important for a pregnant woman to have a healthy and nutritious diet.
A pregnant woman needs a lot more calories and nutrition than a non-pregnant woman, simply because the growing baby needs these nutrients. Research has shown that pregnant women require almost 80-100 grams of protein daily to help in development of the placenta and the amniotic fluid, both of which help in the development of the baby.
Once pregnant, you will need to consume around 200-300 extra calories on a daily basis to ensure you do not go malnourished and have a healthy pregnancy. Pregnancies can be complicated and for a lot of reasons; however if you are consistent and careful with your health, diet, and nutrition then the likelihood of you having a healthy pregnancy is very high.
Spina bifida is a birth defect that happens in many children after birth. However it can be prevented if you have stored a decent amount of the Folate vitamin. It helps in preventing such ailments and doctors recommend stocking up on before conceiving and especially during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.
It is recommended that you consume a 500-milligram supplement of Folate once a day a month before getting pregnant and for three months after. Women with diabetes or a family history of it will require additional folate as such consult your doctor.
Dark green leafy vegetables like broccoli, brussels sprouts, and spinach are rich in Folate. Avocado, bananas, oranges, and strawberries are amongst the most common Folate rich fruits. Fruit juice is also very healthy. Peanut butter and nuts are also healthy and recommended unless you are allergic to them.
This is the substance that is responsible for carrying the oxygen through blood all around your body. As such, as the baby develops more you will need a lot more iron that normal because the baby needs a lot of oxygen too. Beef, lamb, pork, chicken, kidney, and fish are the best sources of high amounts of iron. Beef and fish are said to have the highest content of iron.
For vegetarians, you can stock up on soybeans, eggs, wholegrain breads, spinach, broccoli, kidney beans, prunes and baked beans. This will help keep nourished jus as well as the non-vegetarian food items.
Seafood, eggs, dairy food and iodised salt are all excellent sources of Iodine. Iodine is very important because it helps in the development of your baby’s brain and its hormone production as well. If you have a thyroid condition then it is best to seek your doctor’s advice before hand, just to be careful.
As commonly known calcium helps in teeth and bone development. It is a very essential nutrient and can be easily obtained from dairy products like milk, cheese and yogurt. If you have something against dairy products then try to have high calcium soy drinks, soy yogurt, sorry cheese, salmon, sardines, tofu. These products taste very good and will really help you increase your calcium content. You should ideally consume around 3 servings of calcium products daily; however if you can’t then you should take calcium supplements.
You can either choose to have moderate exposure to sunlight or have 10 micrograms of a vitamin D supplement each day. You should also have vitamin D in your diet. It helps in strengthening the bones of your body and your baby’s. It is recommended that you have seafood, margarine, vitamin D milk and eggs as these are the best sources of the vitamin.
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Omega 3 Fats
These should only be consumed through foods and never through supplements. Have salmon and tuna a few times a week as they are very tasty, healthy, and low in mercury. Sardines, Atlantic salmon, herrings, and mackerel are amongst the other Omega 3 fat foods that pregnant women should consume.
A very important aspect of pregnancy. One simply cannot escape having multivitamins because they are a complete package of strength and health for a pregnant woman. Have breads and cereals along with a lot of different types of vegetables and fruits.
Try having freshly squeezed fruit juices and shakes, as this will give you a variety to choose from. Dairy products are very important for strong bones. Have milk, yogurt, and cheese regularly. Eat a lot of poultry as it is good for the brain development of the baby. Have all types of meats, like beef, fish, horse, etc.
9 cups of fluid is the average any pregnant women should be having. Having more is always good, in this case. Say no to alcohol for at least one year because it seriously affects the development of your child. Be very strict with your caffeine intake as it can also have adverse affects on the child. Herbal tea and green are the best alternatives for regular tea or coffee because they are made of all natural products. Consult your doctor as to which herbal teas to drink.
As you can see there are a lot of foods that a pregnant woman needs to consume during her pregnancy. Fortunately most of these foods come in the daily diet anyway; however you need to be extra cautious and eat mostly these foods. Almost all foods have multiple nutrients as having a balanced diet where these foods have all the nutrients and vitamins mentioned above will be really beneficial for your pregnancy and the development of your baby.
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