Seven foods you should consider eating when you’re pregnant
Expecting a baby and want to be as healthy as possible? Here are seven foods you should consider eating when you’re pregnant.
It’s never more important to consider your diet than when you’re pregnant. Not only do you need to give your own body the strength and nutrients to remain healthy and grow your baby, but the food you do or don’t consume has a direct impact on the health of your unborn child.
That said, it’s not always easy to get a balanced diet when you’re pregnant if you suffer from morning sickness or food aversions.
To help you identify what to add to your diet over the next few weeks and months, and why, here are seven foods you should consider eating when you’re pregnant.
Although the smell of fish might make you feel sick during the first trimester of your pregnancy, it is important to include this food in your diet at least three or four times a week if you can.
Salmon is rich in oils and Omega-3 fatty acids that are good for your baby’s healthy development. Doctors recommend consuming 8-12 ounces of seafood weekly if you’re pregnant, and salmon is a low-mercury option.
Beans are not always the most popular choice, as they can cause unwanted reactions in your stomach and intestines. However, they are packed with folic acid, iron, magnesium, potassium, proteins, and fatty acids – pretty much everything you need during your nine months of pregnancy.
Beans are also a great source of fibers and can help to prevent pregnancy discomforts like hemorrhoids and constipation.
You can easily integrate beans into your diet by adding them to the traditional English breakfast or in salads and tortillas.
3) Sweet potatoes
If you’ve ever wondered why sweet potatoes are so orange, the answer is simple – they are filled with carotenoids, plant pigments that you’ll also find in carrots. Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins A and C, as well as in fibers, and folic acid.
Pregnant women are advised to increase their vitamin A intake by 10–40%, and the beta-carotene you find in sweet potatoes is a good source. Their fiber can also help to reduce blood sugar spikes and improve your digestive health and mobility.
Eggs should be high on your list of foods, especially during pregnancy. They are a great source of proteins, vitamins, and minerals that will help your baby’s spinal cord and brain develop properly while preventing any defects on the neural tube.
If you can, aim to eat one egg a day or at least five per week; even more if your doctor recommends it. Combine it with your favorite veggies and cheese and you have the recipe for a perfect frittata. Boiled eggs, avocado, and a bowl of milk and cereals are a great way to start your morning.
However, even if some recipes praise the miracles of raw eggs, you should never consume them uncooked as they can be extremely dangerous to you and your child as they may be infected with salmonella.
In order to avoid this, you should consider a safe and clean source of chicken meat and eggs. If you want to make sure you always have a clean and high-quality source of proteins coming from poultry and eggs, perhaps a chicken egg incubator and a small battery would be good investments.
5) Lean meat
Aside from eggs, you might want to introduce a secondary source of proteins into your diet. Doctors recommend consuming about 75 grams (2.6 ounces) of meat daily to get all the necessary nutrients for a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
Lean meat is an excellent choice because it is also rich in iron, one of the main elements you will need in your body during pregnancy to avoid anemia.
So consider adding some lamb, pork or beef to your salads, soups or main dishes to boost your energy levels, keep your hunger at bay, and help your baby grow healthily. As we previously mentioned, chicken and turkey meat also make great options for dinner or lunch.
6) Greek yogurt
If you prefer, you can substitute some of the proteins you get from eggs or meat with Greek yogurt. This delicious snack has twice the protein of regular yogurt, as well as calcium and probiotics that will keep your bones strong and healthy.
If you don’t like the taste of simple yogurt you can combine it with fruit and cereals for a healthy breakfast or add it on grilled veggies or meat.
If you are not a soy or almond milk lover, you can still drink milk even if you are expecting. However be aware that milk should be heat treated or pasteurised because otherwise there is a risk of food poisoning.
Milk contains calcium which is essential during pregnancy for both the mother and child developing inside.
Opting for a natural and trusted milk source is the best alternative, so if you live on a farm and own cows, you should enjoy your dairy products even more.
As your body changes to welcome the new life growing inside, it’s a good idea to start looking for a milking machine, as you may find it difficult to manage milking later in your pregnancy. Before you buy, research how to choose a good one.
Photo by Jordan Bauer