Everyone loves a pregnant woman with that cute little baby bump. It's something about the way they glow and look all radiant! However, being in this condition is not only challenging but tricky too. You've got to watch your steps because instead of you eating for one person, two precious ones depend on you (and one doesn't even have teeth yet).
The importance of proper nutrition during pregnancy cannot be overemphasized (like seriously!) A balanced diet can make all the difference — keeping health problems at bay while ensuring Momma and Baby are getting all the nutrients they need.
But what constitutes a healthy meal for moms-to-be? What food should you avoid?
Here's everything you'll ever need to know about taking diets during pregnancy:
Macro-nutrients - Protein
Protein is an essential nutrient required by every cell in the body. During pregnancy, it contributes significantly to fetal growth and development (baby needs some protein power up there).
The recommended daily intake for pregnant women is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. Foods rich in protein include beans and legumes, lean meat (chicken breast), fish such as salmon or sardines.
Macro-nutrients - Carbohydrates
Let me start by telling that craving carbs is NORMAL! Don't deny yourself those pizza cravings just yet; however, ensure it’s no-junk packed full-carbs goodness like brown rice or whole-grain bread.
Complex carbohydrates contain fiber that can help prevent constipation common amongst expectant mothers; fruit juices could also enjoy these benefits!
Hydrophilic food options
Hydrophilic foods refer primarily to Vegetables fruits cough cough drink water always Sometimes Eating them raw helps provide most of their nutritional contents compared to cooking veggies down where most minerals break down when heated. Drinking plenty of water, especially when eating hydrating foods like cucumber and watermelon, is ideal.
Folate is a significant nutrient required for the development of your baby's brain during pregnancy (baby Einstein in the making). It also helps to prevent birth defects such as spina bifida.
Leafy greens are an excellent source of folate, including spinach or kale or lettuce,(lettuce pray it works) citrus fruits - oranges (an apple fell off its tree?), grapefruit! Can't go wrong with fruit salads either.
Calcium is essential for building strong bones and teeth (Fort Knox inside you!) The recommended dietary allowance for pregnant women aged 19-50 years old ranges between 1000mg – 1300mg depending on age group/outlook/. You can get calcium from dairy products like yogurt or low-fat milk that come fortified with vitamin D too!
According to studies done by Healthline.com around plant-based sources include nuts,(sesame seeds), and dried figs/dates; however, supplements may be necessary if veganism/food allergies/intolerance arises.'.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids found mainly in fish oils play a significant role during fetal growth period aiding smooth eye & brain developments/daily cardiovascular routines. Pregnant women should aim towards acquiring at least two servings a week approximating to 200g.(hissss.) oily fish salmon/tuna/sardines/mackerels/trout are good vendors here/It's anti-inflammatory properties proves beneficial too!
If you're allergic/not feeling fish today/giving up seafood options then possible alternatives available would be flaxseed oil/chia seed/nuts +avocado mixed into salad bowl giving me ideas nowadays.
Food To Avoid During Pregnancy
Pregnancy limits us from certain food options due to potential damages (that sweet sweet gouda you used to have, only in your head now love).
Uncooked food(eat that beef well done!) nuts/peanuts[ would lead to peanut butter becoming a nutty issue :)] Caffeine drinks- (minor caffeine intake is okay; coffee, soda. Sushi or raw fish(like nobody tells you its uncooked/raw fish at times) deli meats! bigger fishes with high mercury levels such as tilefish/shark/mackerel/swordfish-(this definitely isn’t JAWS lol).
These foods pose higher risks of foodborne illnesses from bacteria like salmonella listeria/tuna due to methylmercury contamination usually found in the larger fish options mentioned.
Hydration for Moms-to-be
Water constitutes 60% of our body fluids. Pregnant moms should aim towards consuming at least 10 cups daily as water plays an essential role during pregnancy—the movement of nutrients/blood + disposal/separation of wastes & toxins after usage. Water could aid nutrient absorption too!
Staying hydrated supports collagen production improving skin elasticity eliminates constipation increasing general health benefits like mood stabilizing & hormone balancing properties among others.
Pregnancy Cravings! What Should You Do About Them?
It’s no secret that pregnant women often experience cravings withering from ice cream fudge to pickles dipped in peanut butter (yum?) They're uncontrollable pangs designed by aliens somewhere out there (don't ask me how I know) - this part needs addressing cause what's life without cravings?
Here's what we suggest: indulge yourself proportionately! DON'T completely forbid all cravings because else risk binging later when needed calories increase mid-pregnancy!
Instead,/ go ahead and swap some options providing healthier scenarios/equal satisfaction-doughnut switched for whole-grain plain bagels topped up with mashed avocado instead etc.(Eagle eye always!)
Alternatively/give into those cravings/ satisfying them once a week never hurt anyone honestly so feel free amass your cravings in peace as fulfilled happy mom=happy baby 🙂
A mother's health is critical during pregnancy, therefore appropriate nutrition purely depends on being conscious and knowing what to eat/drink at each point. Incorporating healthy foods/macro-nutrients + reducing risky options provides an excellent starting point for that nutritious journey ahead.
trust me - the belly of self-appreciation couldn't get too rounder!