If you are expecting, you may have questions on how to safeguard your baby’s health and well-being. A healthy lifestyle along with a balanced and a nutritious diet will ensure that your body is fit to deal with the constant bodily changes as well as provide nourishment to the developing baby.
The foods you consume, during pregnancy, are the main source of nutrients for the growing baby. Therefore, it is important that you are aware of which foods – to have, be cautious of, and completely avoid.
We have compiled a list of all such food items along with some quick and healthy snacking ideas that can satiate your cravings as well as provide a nutritional boost!
A healthy pregnancy diet can be quite different for every woman. But there are a few basic rules that apply to all of us, regardless of health status, lifestyle or history of complications. Small, regular meals should be the norm in pregnancy. Fresh fruits and vegetables can prevent sudden highs and lows in your mood. Just like in effective fertility diets, healthy fats should be included and never avoided. Make sure you include raw salads, small wild fish and probiotics like kefir and kombucha to your diet.
Just because you are eating for two does not mean you can just double up on everything you eat. Your baby has certain nutritional requirements in order to grow and develop into a healthy baby. Since your body takes the development of your baby very seriously, nutrients go first to your baby and then to you. For example, if you are not getting enough calcium, the little calcium you are getting would go to your baby first, leaving you depleted. Thus, here is a list of essential nutrients which are a must to consume during pregnancy.
Pregnancy brings about noticeable changes to the body and it is almost impossible to stick with one’s pre-pregnancy diet. However, eating a nutrient-dense, whole food diet prior to the pregnancy can make ensuing months easier. Paying attention to your body’s cue, be it food cravings or hunger pangs will keep you on course with your pregnancy weight gain.
High blood pressure in late pregnancy can lead to preterm birth, that increases the risk of low birth weight and immature lung function in the baby. A large study involving more than 3,500 women, over 9 yrs, in Australia, showed that a Mediterranean diet of virgin olive oil, fresh fruit, pulses, fish and small quantities of meat can prevent hypertension during pregnancy.
According to Ayurveda, drinking, at least, two glasses of plain milk or milk flavoured with cardamom, ginger, and almonds can be very beneficial for the developing foetus. Also, adding herbs to your milk like Shatavari can be very favourable for your baby. Your diet should include fresh fruits such as mango, peach, coconut, etc. You can also take priorities on vegetables such as squash, parsley, and sweet potato.
Ginger is a very effective herb against pregnancy sickness. It is a common remedy in Chinese medicine. It is based on the system of yin and yang and other opposing factors, including heat and cold. However, pregnant women should not take more than 1-3 grams of ginger per day. High doses can cause diarrhea, heartburn, and upset stomach. Ginger can also interact with medications including those for treating diabetes, high blood pressure and blood thinners (anticoagulant medications).
A well-ripened papaya is rich in vitamins C and E, fiber and folic acid. Papaya helps to prevent and control constipation and heartburn, which women suffer from during their pregnancy. Many experts recommend that pregnant women should eat moderate amounts of ripe papaya during pregnancy. However, it is completely unsafe to have unripe papaya during pregnancy as even a minute amount of papaya latex may be dangerous for women who have a history of spontaneous abortion or premature labor due to increased contractile activity within the uterus.
Women are recommended to keep cinnamon intake minimal while pregnant (as part of regular food only) to under 1/2 tsp daily and <100 gms/week. Avoid taking it independently, consuming or inhaling cinnamon essential oil, or taking as supplements, as it can cause involuntary contractions and disturb the placenta, exposing the foetus to toxins and stress hormones from the mother, thereby affecting the fetal brain development.
During the early trimester, the mother needs all the possible nutrients that a growing fetus demands healthy growth. Vitamin C is one of the most critical ones. Pineapple is one of those wonder super foods that are an abundant source of vitamin C, minerals, and protein. Pineapple is often avoided in pregnancy by women suffering from gestation diabetes due to the natural sugar levels in the pineapple.
Pregnant women need to be extra cautious about their food choices as their food choices will directly influence their baby’s growth and overall development. Here are 15 foods you should be very cautious of during pregnancy.
Pregnancy is a phase where you repeatedly deal with cravings. It is so hard to stay away from those random chocolate cravings during pregnancy. Eating every few hours during pregnancy is advised. However, healthy meals are important too. This post covers a few quick snacking ideas which are healthy and satisfying.