11 Important and Healthy Foods for Pregnant Women

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Should I eat differently now I'm pregnant?

Now that you're a mum-to-be, it is important to eat well. This will make sure you get all the nutrients you and your developing baby need. 

1. Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes are among the most underrated vegetables. Most people are unaware that sweet potatoes are laden with nutritious fibers, potassium even more than bananas, Vitamin B6, iron, Vitamin C, beta-carotene and copper.
While other food items in the list offer ample nutrients, sweet potatoes stand out because of their beta-carotene composition. This is an anti-oxidant that gets converted into Vitamin A after consuming, which plays a key role in the development of baby’s eyes, skin and bones.
Beta-carotene is also a great substitute for iron and its copper content easily absorbs iron in the body.
So replace your fried snacks with sweet potatoes.

2. Eggs
Here is another important food to eat during pregnancy. In whatever form you consume eggs – boiled, scrambled or simply omelet, they offer a high dose of proteins. Besides, they are also great source of choline, iron and folic acid.
Not only eggs are a convenient source of proteins, but they also contain choline that is essential for the baby’s brain development. Besides, choline also helps in reducing the risk of neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.
Go for fortified eggs as they are rich in Omega 3 fatty acid. Omega 3 fatty acids also work stop skin ageing.

The magnesium-rich nuts prevent the risk of premature delivery, reduce labor pain and also help in the development of fetal nervous system. Shelled pistachios can control cravings as they take longer to eat and keeps your stomach full for some time period.

3-Dried Beans & Lentils
All women need 10 extra grams of protein a day during pregnancy(for a total of at least 60 grams); beans and lentils are an excellent source, with about 15 grams per cup. They're also high in fiber, which helps to combat constipation. And 1 cup of cooked lentils meets half of your daily folate requirement. "Add them to rice dishes and salads," suggests Lola O'Rourke, RD, spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

4- Orange Juice
Orange is stockpiled with Vitamin C, potassium and folic acid. Orange juice not only prevents birth defects, but also helps in maintaining metabolism and overall health. And presence of Vitamin D also helps in baby’s bone growth.

5-Lean meat
Lean meat is loaded with iron and B vitamins that are essential for RBC formation, thus preventing anemia. It consists of Vitamin B6 that helps in baby’s brain and tissue development’ while its B12 helps in maintaining nervous system of the fetus.

6- Yogurt
Plain yogurt comes laden with more amount of calcium than milk. Calcium is essential for the development of bones and teeth. Expecting moms should take three servings of calcium every day. Greek yogurt topped with fruits doubles the protein and fiber consumption.
Berries, yogurt and whole grains are must-have foods during pregnancy.

7. Oatmeal
Oats consist of fibers, proteins and Vitamin B6. Expecting moms should start their morning with a nice big bowl of oats as they are loaded with fibers, Vitamin B6 and proteins. Go for fortified oat meals as they contain B vitamins, iron and folic acid.

8. Leafy greens
Expecting mothers should add leafy green vegetables to their diet, such as spinach, broccoli, kale and asparagus.
They are loaded with anti-oxidants and are a good source of calcium, potassium, fiber, folate and especially Vitamin A that is the key to the baby’s eyesight development.

It's not only packed with nutrients that are necessary for a healthypregnancy -- such as calcium and folate -- but broccoli is also rich in fiber and disease-fighting antioxidants. And since it contains plenty of vitamin C, this popular green vegetable will help your body absorb iron when it's eaten with an iron-rich food, such as whole wheat pasta or brown rice.

Salmon is an important diet for pregnant women. Not only expecting moms, but everyone who consumes non-vegetarian food should add salmon to their diet, as it is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and proteins.

Bananas are rich in potassium and offer quick energy to fight offpregnancy fatigue. "They're also easy on your stomach if you're nauseated," says O'Rourke. Slice them up into cereal or whip one into a breakfast smoothie with yogurt, berries, ice, and a splash of orange juice.

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