You don’t need to go on a special diet, but it's important to eat a variety of different foods every day to get the right balance of nutrients that you and your baby need. It is best to get vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat, but when you're pregnant you need to take some supplements as well to make sure you get everything you need.
Eating a healthy, varied diet in pregnancy will help you to get most of the vitamins and minerals you need. There are some vitamins and minerals that are especially important.
Smart choices about pregnancy nutrition can help you promote your baby's growth and development.
It is best to get vitamins and minerals from the food you eat, but when you are pregnant you will need to take some supplements as well to make sure you get everything you need. It's recommended that you take:
- 10 micrograms of vitamin D each day throughout your pregnancy and if you breastfeed
- 400 micrograms of folic acid each day – you should take this from before you are pregnant until you are 12 weeks pregnant
If you get hungry between meals, try not to eat snacks that are high in fat and/or sugar, such as sweets, biscuits, crisps or chocolate. Instead, choose from the following nutritious snacks:
- salad vegetables, such as carrot, celery or cucumber
- low-fat yoghurt
- ready-to-eat apricots, figs or prunes
- vegetable and bean soups
- unsweetened breakfast cereals
- milky drinks or unsweetened fruit juices
- fresh fruit
- baked beans on toast or a baked potato
- Swap from whole milk to semi-skimmed, 1% fat or even skimmed milk.
- Have a slice of cantaloupe or a bowl of strawberries for a snack, and you'll provide your baby with vitamins and minerals for growth while keeping yourself healthy too.
Make sure that raw foods are stored separately from ready-to-eat foods, otherwise there's a risk of contamination.
Bananas:Having bananas during the early weeks of pregnancy may help with nausea that many women experience.
Spinach:TRIMESTER: 1: These leafy greens are packed with folate. "Adequate folate is required in early pregnancy to prevent neural tube defects (birth defects of the brain and spinal cord),. Spinach also contains fibre, manganese, iron, vitamin C and K.
Beans:TRIMESTER: 1: Most of us know that beans are an excellent source of protein and fibre, but beans during pregnancy will help you deal with constipation. "Almost 40 per cent of pregnant women will become constipated at some point during pregnancy. Common triggers for constipation include the pressure on your growing uterus, the pregnancy hormone progesterone that slows your digestive track, and iron supplements,". Beans also contain a rich source of folate and iron.
Red Bell Peppers:TRIMESTER: 1: Vitamin C is responsible for the growth and repair of tissues in your body during pregnancy. "Red bell peppers have twice the amount of vitamin C content compared to green peppers — one large red bell pepper contains 209 mg of vitamin C, which is three times the vitamin C found in an orange," . Consuming vitamin C also helps us absorb iron faster, so don't forget to add peppers to your salads and sandwiches.
Eggs:TRIMESTER: 2: Indian vegetarians won’t prefer this but.."Egg yolk contains choline, an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in the development of your baby’s brain in addition to boosting your own brain,". Expecting moms should get around 450 mg of choline each day. And if you're a vegan or don't like eggs, other sources include milk and soy beans.
Avocados:TRIMESTER: 2: This nutrient-dense fruit is bursting with goodness. "Avocados are a great source of fibre, vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, potassium and vitamin B6," . Filled with healthy mono-unsaturated fats, these are the "good" fats that can help protect against heart disease. Avocados have been known to help fight morning sickness and help your baby’s brain and tissue growth.
Yogurt :TRIMESTER: 2: Creamier compared to most yogurts. "Regular non-fat yogurt has six to eight grams of protein per serving.It's also a good source of calcium — which every woman needs during pregnancy.
Papaya:only ripe:TRIMESTER: 3: This tropical food is full of vitamin C, folate, fibre and potassium. "Papaya is also a natural way to soothe heartburn, which is often experienced during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester,". However, pregnant women should only eat ripe papaya, as unripe papayas contain pepsin in their latex (the resin from the papaya tree), which can induce contractions.
Nuts:TRIMESTER: 3:As discomfort becomes more common during the third trimester, it's important to eat frequently. "Nuts are a great source of protein and heart healthy fats, and make a great snack since they're easy to store,". Nuts like almonds, walnuts, pistachios and cashews all have healthy fats, protein and fibre.
Take care of your unborn baby.
The sole purpose of these blogs is to provide information about the tradition of ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, prevention or cure of any disease. If you have any serious, acute or chronic health concern, please consult a trained doctor/health professional who can fully assess your needs and address them effectively. If you are seeking the medical advice of a trained Ayurvedic expert, call us or e mail.
Dr Unnati Chavda
(Promoting pregnancy wellness)