Eating healthy and having good eating patterns while pregnant is very important. Here’s why…
There is so much information out there on eating healthy while pregnant. Moms-to-be are very concerned about the subject and with good reason, they want their babies to be as healthy as possible.
If you are pregnant, or plan on becoming pregnant, there are some definite “do’s” that you want to do as early in your pregnancy, or before, as possible.
Eating Healthy While Pregnant
Here are some of the most important nutrients that will help you and your baby thrive during the whole nine months of pregnancy. If you are able to start eating these nutrient-rich foods prior to conception, you and your little one will reap even more benefits. And while you’ll be able to get much of your daily allowances through your prenatal vitamin, nothing is more healthy than eating good food and establishing excellent eating patterns.
Folic Acid – prior to conception and up until the first 6 weeks of pregnancy, there is no nutrient that is more important than folic acid. It can reduce the risk of certain birth defects by as much as 70%. Within the first trimester, 600 micrograms a day is recommended. In addition to your prenatal vitamin, you can get it from beans, whole grains, pork, fish, shellfish, and green leafy vegetables.
Calcium – your baby will draw calcium from your bones while you are pregnant. So it is important that you’re taking in the suggested amount (1,000 milligrams a day) for both you and your developing baby. Calcium aids in your baby having a healthy heart, muscles and nerves, as well as strong bone and tooth development. Foods such as dark green vegetables, fortified orange juice and dairy products are great sources.
Iron – iron is essential to our diet whether a woman is pregnant or not. But during pregnancy, you need a lot more. It’s recommended that a pregnant woman get 27 milligrams per day. Iron comes from protein such as meat, poultry, fish, legumes, grains, and vegetables.
Zinc – a developing baby needs zinc to grow properly. It is essential for the mother’s immune system too. A pregnant woman, 19 and older, needs 11 mg per day. Red meat is an excellent source, as well as poultry, nuts, beans, whole grains, dairy products and some shellfish.
Fiber – this is important for a mother’s health. It reduces constipation, which is a common problem during pregnancy. Getting 15 to 20 grams a day is recommended. Foods such as veggies, fruits, legumes, whole grain cereals and bread are great sources of fiber.
A diet rich in nutrients is not only vital for your developing baby, but it helps you stay healthy too, even after pregnancy.