By: Josef Bichler
If you are expecting your first child or eagerly awaiting a new addition to your growing family, your nutrition should be of utmost importance to you. Remember that whatever you take in will be taken in by your unborn baby too, so be wary of the foods you serve on your plate and study the nutritional value they have instead of how good they taste for your palate. To help you choose the right foods that will keep you and your baby healthy, here are the suggested inclusions in the diet of pregnant women.
Eggs are rich in protein, which has the amino acids necessary for the growth of your baby. This includes the growth of your baby’s brain and muscles. You may also want to prefer DHA eggs, which are naturally loaded with omega 3 fatty acid that further supports brain development. Just a word of advice, make sure that your eggs are thoroughly cooked to avoid salmonella poisoning. If you are not fond of eggs, other sources of protein are red meat, fish, and tofu.
Do not be afraid of the fat found in nuts. Nuts are good sources of fiber, protein, and minerals, such as calcium, manganese, and magnesium. All of these will help in the development of the foetus. Therefore, instead of grabbing a slice of cake for snack, munch on a bowl of nuts instead, and better yet mix some dried fruits to it. Just be sure to not eat too many, as nuts have a lot of calories.
Speaking of dried fruits, did you know that this is a good source of iron? Your body needs iron to produce hemoglobin, a component of the blood that is responsible for carrying oxygen. When you are pregnant, you need more iron since you have to supply your baby with oxygen too and your baby also uses up iron in building his or her own blood supply.
Rich in vitamin A, carrots are an important part of your diet, as it will help in the development of your child’s bones, eyes, and teeth. You can eat carrots as is, or transform them to delectable dishes and juices.
Aside from fortified cereals, avocados are also a good source of folate, which is essential for the development of your baby’s brain and spinal cord. Most doctors prescribe a folic acid supplement to pregnant women at the early stages of pregnancy to prevent any birth defects on the child, but you can also get your daily requirement of folate from avocados and lentils, among others. In fact, you should start loading up on folic acid while you are still trying to conceive since birth defects often happen on the first month of the pregnancy.