If you’re pregnant, you might be wondering what the best foods are to keep you and your baby healthy. Check out this blog post for some tips on what to eat (and what to avoid) during pregnancy.
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A pregnant woman needs to pay more attention to her diet than she did before she became pregnant. She needs to make sure that she is getting enough of the right nutrients to help her baby grow and develop.
There are certain foods that are particularly important for a pregnant woman to eat. These include:
-Fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are a good source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Pregnant women should aim to eat at least four servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
-Whole grains: Whole grains are a good source of carbs, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Pregnant women should aim to eat at least six servings of whole grains every day.
-Protein: Protein is essential for the growth and development of the baby. Pregnant women should aim to eat at least three servings of protein-rich foods every day.
-Dairy: Dairy products are a good source of calcium, protein, and vitamin D. Pregnant women should aim to eat at least three servings of dairy products every day.
-Fish: Fish is a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for the development of the brain and eyes. Pregnant women should aim to eat at least two servings of fish every week.
Fruits are an important part of a healthy diet for pregnant women. Fruits provide natural sugars, vitamins, minerals and fiber that can help you maintain your energy levels and control your weight. Eat a variety of fruits every day, including fresh, frozen, canned and dried options.
Some good fruit choices for pregnant women include apples, oranges, bananas, pears, grapes, mangoes, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. You can also get your daily dose of fruit by drinking 100% fruit juice or eating dried fruits such as raisins or apricots.
Vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet during pregnancy, especially leafy green vegetables and yellow or orange vegetables. Pregnant women should aim to eat 2-4 cups of vegetables per day.
Green vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli are packed with nutrients like folate, iron and calcium. Folate is important for the development of the neural tube in the baby’s brain and spine. Iron is needed to make hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in the blood. Calcium is important for the development of bones and teeth.
Yellow and orange vegetables are good sources of vitamins A and C. Vitamin A is important for the development of the eyes, skin, bones and immune system in the baby. Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron from food and is also an antioxidant that helps protect cells from damage.
Dairy is an excellent source of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D — nutrients that are essential for bone health. Pregnant women should aim for 3 servings of dairy per day. Some good options include:
Pregnant women need about 70 grams of protein a day. That’s about 10 grams more than the amount recommended for women who are not pregnant. Good sources of protein include lean beef, chicken, fish, tofu, legumes, eggs, and nuts.
Whole grains are an important part of a healthy diet for pregnant women. Whole grains include the entire grain kernel — the bran, germ and endosperm. Examples of whole grains include whole wheat, oats, corn, brown rice, sorghum, millet and quinoa.
Whole grains are a good source of fiber, which can help prevent constipation. They also contain important vitamins and minerals, such as iron, folic acid and magnesium. Folic acid is especially important for pregnant women because it helps prevent certain birth defects of the baby’s brain and spine.
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that pregnant women consume at least 6 ounces of grain products each day, with at least 3 ounces coming from whole grain products.
Water is the healthiest drink for any pregnant woman. It not only helps to keep her hydrated, but also provides her with the necessary electrolytes and minerals. It is important to drink at least eight glasses of water per day, and even more if she is exercising or in a hot climate.
Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, chocolate and some sodas. Too much caffeine can cause fetal growth problems and increase the risk of miscarriage. Limit yourself to 200 mg or less of caffeine a day, which is about what you’d get from one 12-ounce cup of coffee. Decaffeinated coffee and tea are safe choices, too.
Expecting mothers are often told to abstain from alcohol, as it can lead to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). However, occasional light drinking (one drink per day) is not harmful and may even be beneficial. Pregnant women who drink heavily or binge drink (four or more drinks in one sitting) are at risk for serious health problems, including birth defects, miscarriage, and stillbirth.
A pregnant woman needs to eat healthy foods so that she can get the nutrients she and her baby need. She should eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy.