Maintaining a healthy diet during and after pregnancy can be challenging. You feel exhausted, maybe sick, and the last thing you want to eat is a salad. Are we right? That being said, the right nutrients are important—they'll keep you and baby healthy! Of course, you should always speak with your doctor before making any dietary changes (especially when you're expecting). But once you've got the clear, you'll see there are easy and delicious ways to sneak in those vitamins. Here's what you should be eating over the next 9+ months.
You know the saying: now you're eating for two! During pregnancy, you need to eat more to meet the needs of your growing fetus. Dairy products are among the recommended products because they contain a lot of calcium, magnesium, and zinc. They're among the main sources of high-caloric proteins, so you need to include them in your diet.
Greek yogurt is usually recommended to pregnant women, as it's the dairy product with the most amount of calcium. Mix it with a little honey, granola, or fruit and you'll have a delicious and satisfying snack.
Legumes are a huge source of vitamins, which are beneficial for your baby’s health. They contain folate or B9 vitamin which is extremely helpful for mothers and babies in the first trimester. If you're looking to increase folate, reach for green beans, cauliflower, or asparagus. Try roasting them in olive oil with a little garlic—you'll be shocked at how delicious they are! And if you're ready for that salad, lettuce and green leafy vegetables are another excellent source of this vitamin.
Eggs are among the best food you can have because they contain a little bit of everything you need. They are full of vitamins, minerals, high-quality protein and fats. However, the most important nutrient eggs have is choline. It's essential for key processes that take place at a cellular level, but also on brain development and health. Keep in mind that choline is found in the yolk of the egg, so avoid eating an egg-white omelet.
Wondering whether you can eat fish during pregnancy? You should know that it's among the recommended foods. Seafood is rich in omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for pregnant women because they help grow a healthy baby. Salmon is among the most recommended types of fish. Besides the omega-3 fatty acids, it also contains high amounts of vitamin D, which is important for bone health and immune function.
Fruits provide a huge source of vitamins, minerals and fibers. Plus, they're so refreshing! Among the most recommended fruits are:
You can also try pomegranates, bananas, berries, apples and dried fruits. They provide the necessary vitamins to boost your body’s immune system and help your baby grow healthy.
Staying hydrated during pregnancy is a must because your blood volume increases. Among the symptoms of dehydration are fatigue, headaches, tiredness or anxiety. Even though your baby has everything it needs, it is important to make sure that you also have everything you need, and water is important.
Water helps relieve constipation which is a common symptom of pregnancy. Keep in mind that your body also takes water from other foods, like legumes or fruits. So, aim to drink around 1 - 2 liters of water per day.
Motherhood comes with a lot of responsibilities—and part of that is choosing the right nutrition. Get creative with your food! Make a smoothie of berries, apples, and milk, or brew some Rooibos tea. The world is your oyster—have fun with your food and you'll ensure that baby is growing to be strong and healthy.
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