What Should Pregnant Women Eat?
Pregnant women are always scrutinized on what foods to eat and what foods pregnant women should avoid. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing because some just want to look after yours and the baby’s health. It’s known that the baby’s main source of nourishment comes from what the mother consumes daily.
Experts around the world recommend that a pregnant woman should try a variety of healthy foods and beverages in order to ensure that the baby grows and develops accordingly.
Doctors highlight that a pregnant woman should consume more calcium, protein, iron and folic acid than a one that isn’t pregnant. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggest that a woman needs these in order to provide the baby what it needs. Below you will find the importance of them.
This is sometimes referred as folic acid and is basically vitamin B. You must eat plenty of such vitamins because it will help to prevent defects in the baby’s brain and overall development. An organization under the name of March of Dimes suggests that woman should consume around 600 micrograms of folate per day.
If you do not consume enough of it, the baby will be born with birth defects and they will weigh less than healthy babies. Thus, the child will be prone to further heart diseases as they grow older. Here are the foods that are rich in folic acid:
• Vegetables such as cucumber, spinach, Iceberg and arugula
• Citrus fruits like clementine, grapefruit, orange, and Kinnow
• Whole-grain goods
You may find that pasta, beans, and chickpeas have a higher dosage of folic acid but they must be consumed in moderation.
According to the same American College, it has been suggested that women that are pregnant need around 26 milligrams of iron per day. This may come as a surprise because those who are not pregnant need half of that for a healthy lifestyle.
The main reason why you need it is that iron generates enough blood cells so you and your baby will be oxygenated. Without it, you will risk developing anemia so you will constantly feel fatigue as well as, you may have a premature delivery.
In order to ensure that you consume enough iron, you must consume vitamin C whilst eating foods that are rich in iron. For example, have a grapefruit after you finish eating a well-cooked steak. Below you will find the foods that are rich in iron:
• Red meat such as beef
• Mussels, oysters, and clams
• Black Beans
You can also consume pistachio and dark chocolate but they have to be consumed in moderation because they are high in saturated fats.
Whilst it’s true that it’s much easier to eat protein during the day, you must remember that you need far more than a woman that is not pregnant. A report concluded by the Academy of Dietetics in Florida has suggested that protein is a nutrient as it helps the baby to develop important organs such as a healthy heart and spinal cord. Below are the foods that are rich in protein:
• Lean meat such as pork
• Grass-fed beef
• Fish such as salmon and anchovies
In case you are vegetarian, you will be pleased to know that you too have options. For example, beans, whole grain baked goods, peanuts and peanut butter can be great replacements.
These are the nutrients you must consume if you want your baby to develop healthy and ready to face life. Of course, some days you may find that you have consumed more protein than iron but that doesn’t mean that you should panic. A diverse diet is far more enjoyable.
Foods to eat
In order to maximize the essential nutrition, you should follow the five food groups every time you sit down for a meal. Fill half of your plate with vegetables, a quarter of the plate with whole grains and a quarter with meat. In addition to this, remember that you must also consume dairy products and fruits as a treat.
Vegetables and Fruits
During the pregnancy, it’s essential that you eat these goodies. If you eat between 6 to 10 fist-sized servings every day, you will ensure that you get enough folic acid to provide the baby with a health safety net. You should try to eat avocados as they are rich healthy fatty acids and they also provide a good source of vitamin E.
Dried fruits will provide you with the same nutrients as a fresh fruit. It doesn’t have liquids and they are also smaller in size. For example, dates. They are rich in fiber and potassium. In fact, a large consumption of dates during the third trimester will help with cervical dilation and essentially reduce the need for induced labor.
You must eat these because they are a source of energy, especially during the pregnancy. If you are a carb junkie like the majority of us, this is great news. This is because you do not have to cook anything special. You can finally consume carbohydrates without feeling guilty. The reason why you should try to eat them as much as you can be because you will essentially eliminate the constant feeling of sickness and fatigue.
Oatmeal will provide you with enough healthy carbs and energy. In addition to this, your body will also be provided with protein. Women that are already pregnant suggest that the best time to have oats is during breakfast because you can make a great meal out of it.
In case you prefer to have something else during breakfast and lunch, you will be pleased to know that you can have a bowl of pasta or brown rice for dinner. Who doesn’t like carbonara pasta? The sauce contains eggs as well. If not, you can have a portion of steak with slices of bread on the side.
Foods such as milk, yogurt and cheese are great supplements of calcium, protein and some vitamins. You need to consume large amounts of dairy daily especially if you are vegetarian. This is because you need to meet the needs of the fetus. Without the supplements that come from dairy, it’s very likely that you will risk that your baby will not grow normally.
If you don’t particularly enjoy the taste of milk, you should eat Greek yogurt instead. This is because this product is known the most calcium out of all the dairy products. It will also help with digestive health.
You must try to eat healthy during your pregnancy for yours and the child’s health. The food you eat has a direct effect on how well the baby is born.
You should not be afraid of gaining weight during pregnancy because this is normal. All females do. Your baby needs you to eat healthily.