Healthy diet in an important part of a healthy lifestyle, but it is especially vital if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy. Eating healthy diet during pregnancy will help your baby grow fast. A special diet is not essential during pregnancy, but it's important to eat a variety of foods to get balanced nutrition that are required for you and your baby.
You need extra 300 calories during pregnancy for the growth of baby. Although nausea and vomiting during early months of pregnancy can make it difficult to eat, but try to take well-balanced diet and take prenatal vitamins. Follow these pregnancy diet tips for a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby.
- Eat healthy foods: Eat a variety of foods during pregnancy to get all the essential nutrients for the body. Include 6 to 10 servings of bread and grain, 2 to 3 servings of fruits and vegetables, four servings of milk products and at least 3 servings of proteins
- Starchy foods: Starchy foods are the main source of vitamins, fiber and energy. They have satisfying amount of calories for good health. Choose wholegrain foods instead of the refined foods to get more fiber
- Eat fiber rich foods: Choose foods which are high in fiber such as whole grain wheat, bread, rice, pasta as well as fruits and vegetables. It's best to take fiber from foods you eat but taking fiber supplements can help you get necessary amount of fiber. Talk with your doctor if you want to take any fiber supplement. This can also help prevent cramping and gastric problems
- Take vitamins and minerals: Make sure you are eating enough minerals and vitamins in your diet during pregnancy. Take prenatal vitamin supplements to make sure you are getting essential vitamins for you and your baby
- Eat calcium-rich foods: Eat at least 4 servings of dairy products and calcium-rich foods. Make sure you take 1000 -1300 mg of calcium in your daily diet for pregnancy health
- Take iron-rich foods: Add at least three serving of iron-rich foods in your diet. Take lean meats, spinach, beans and breakfast cereals to ensure you are getting enough iron from your diet
- Take enough Iodine: During pregnancy, choose a variety of dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt and sea food to complete the need of iodine in your diet. Iodine is essential for the development of baby's brain and nervous system
- Vitamin C: It is an essential nutrient during pregnancy. Choose at least one good source of Vitamin C everyday such as broccoli, cauliflower, oranges, strawberries, grapefruit, tomatoes, green pepper, sprouts and mustard greens. 80 - 85 mg is required for a pregnant woman during pregnancy
- Add good source of Folate to your diet: Central nervous system begins to develop in the body during first weeks of pregnancy. So it's wise to add folic acid in your diet and continue it until 8 weeks after conceiving. Include green leafy vegetables, black-eyes peas, black beans and legumes to your diet. Folic acid supplements are also essential while you are pregnant
- Vitamin A: Choose at least one good source of Vitamin A in your diet for pregnancy period. Sources of Vitamin A are pumpkins, spinach, potatoes, carrots, apricots and water squash. Too much Vitamin A can be dangerous for the growth of child
- Drink more water: Water has lots of benefits for the pregnant mother and baby. It helps in building new cells, flushing toxins and delivering nutrients to the body. It helps in getting rid of constipation related problems during pregnancy
- Avoid alcohol: Alcohol is linked to premature delivery, birth defects, intellectual disability and low birth weight babies. So avoid alcohol during pregnancy and breastfeeding phase
- Limit the amount of caffeine: Limit the amount of caffeine in your diet to 300 mg. Take black tea instead of coffee or go for green tea as a healthy option
- Avoid saccharin: Use of Saccharin is prohibited during pregnancy as it can cross placenta and create fetal issues
- Trans fats: Avoid Trans fats and decrease the amount of fats in your diet
- Cholesterol: Limit cholesterol intake in your diet during pregnancy to 300 mg
- No fish: Do not take fish during pregnancy as it has high content of mercury
What to add in diet when not feeling well in pregnancy:
Morning sickness, constipation and diarrhea are the pregnancy related issues. To get rid of such problems, add certain foods to your diet. Here are some suggestions
- Morning sickness: Eat crackers and cereals before getting up early in the morning. Eat small and frequent meals throughout the day and avoid greasy and spicy foods
- Constipation: Add fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet. Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water every day and take fiber rich supplements to get rid of constipation related issues
- Heartburn: Eat small and frequent meals throughout the day. Limit the intake of caffeinated foods and drinks, citric beverages and spicy foods
- Diarrhea: Eat foods that contain dietary fiber to absorb excess water
- Consult a professional for the pregnancy diet plan
Women who are pregnant need special dietary supplements for the growth and health of baby. If you are a pregnant woman, you need a pregnancy diet plan to keep yourself and baby healthy. Consult a registered dietician to discuss specific dietary foods and how can you get all the vitamins and nutrients essential for your health. Develop an eating plan and maintain a diary to keep track of all types of food that you eat. Make sure that you are getting varied amount of all the essential nutrients. A healthy and balanced diet is essential to provide appropriate nutrition to the growing fetus inside the womb.
Vegetarian pregnant women may lack essential minerals and vitamins such as iron, calcium, essential fatty acids and Vitamin B12. A registered dietician can help you develop planned diet for pregnant women that ensure you and your baby are getting essential nutrients. Maintain a healthy weight during pregnancy. If you are overweight, limit the amount of certain foods and if underweight, add calories to your diet. Take steps to maintain a healthy BMI. Moderate exercises should be during pregnancy.