Expectant mothers always find it difficult in deciding on what foods to choose from during the periods they were pregnant. You know you should always eat healthily, but maybe — just maybe — you used to cheat a little.
Latte and doughnut for breakfast? Now that you’re expecting, you are trying to think much more carefully about what you’re feeding yourself because the foods you eat are the main source of nutrients for your growing baby.
Pregnancy foods define the kind of diet every mother should adopt in consideration of their unborn babies. It is at the heart of every mother to take responsibility for giving birth to a healthy baby. More so if they are the first time, mothers.
Are Pregnancy Foods beneficial to Expectant Mothers?
And that’s on top of all the advice you’ve already been given by extended family and friends. You wouldn’t be the first pregnant woman to feel overwhelmed.
Eating well-balanced meals is important at all times, but it is even more essential for expectant mothers. There are essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your developing baby needs.
Most foods are safe. However, there are some foods that you should avoid and or include during pregnancy. Pregnancy foods nutrition can be a minefield.
With this in mind, read more about the Eighth Month Pregnancy Diet (29-32 Weeks). In that case, before or even after having a look at the complete guide below.
Which are the Pregnancy Foods for Expectant Mothers?
Your pregnancy diet and your nutrition, in general, are best tackled by eating whole foods. As close to their natural form as possible. In addition, this will offer you and your growing baby everything you need to thrive throughout each trimester.
During pregnancy, for example, you’ll need protein and calcium for your baby’s tissues and bones. You’ll also need extra folic acid to protect against neural tube birth defects, as well as more iron to help red blood cells carry oxygen to your baby.
Below are more additions to the expectant mothers’ dietary plans;
1. Dried Fruits
It’s a tasty, portable snack that’s especially helpful when you’re craving something sweet.
Choose dried fruits such as apricots, cherries, and cranberries (which can also help to prevent urinary tract infections).
But, stay away from dried bananas, since they’re processed in oil and loaded with fat.
Add black beans, white beans, pinto beans, lentils, black-eyed peas, and kidney, garbanzo, or soybeans to your diet.
Try them in chili and soups, salads, and pasta dishes. Besides providing protein and fiber, they are also good sources of key nutrients, such as iron, folate, calcium, and zinc.
They’re packed with vitamin C, folate, and fiber, and since they’re nearly 90 percent water.
They’ll also help you meet your daily fluid needs (skimping on your fluid intake can leave you feeling fatigued).
4. Whole-Grain Bread
Revamp your immunity and wellness by swapping your traditional white bread.
Especially for a whole-grain variety, you can make sure you’re consuming the recommended 20 to 35 daily grams of fiber.
However, scan labels to find a loaf that offers at least 2 grams of fiber per slice. Whole-grain bread also supplies you with a good share of your iron and zinc.
5. Fortified Breakfast Cereal
You knew folate was important before conception and during your first few weeks of pregnancy, but your needs for the B vitamin stay high the whole nine months.
Experts advise getting 400 micrograms per day through vitamin supplements or fortified foods.
Breakfast cereal is an easy way to do it since many brands contain 400 micrograms per bowl.
And another 200 micrograms through foods that are naturally high in folates, such as asparagus and black-eyed peas.
6. Cruciferous Vegetables
It’s not only packed with nutrients that are necessary for a healthy pregnancy — 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.
Especially, when it’s eaten with iron-rich food, such as whole-wheat pasta or brown rice.
7. Nonfat Milk
Your body absorbs roughly twice as much calcium from foods while you’re pregnant, so your daily needs remain the same.
But since most of us get too little calcium, to begin with, drinking more nonfat milk is a smart move.
Each 8-ounce glass supplies about 30 percent of the recommended dietary allowance of 1,000 milligrams.
8. Eggs for Expectant Mothers
Eggs are versatile and a good source of protein that provides amino acids you and your baby need.
They contain more than a dozen vitamins and minerals, including choline, which is good for baby’s brain development.
However, be sure not to eat under-cooked or raw eggs.
Blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries are delicious snacks and taste great in pancakes and on top of cereal.
Berries are packed with vitamin C, potassium, folate, and fiber.
10. Lean Meat
Your daily iron needs double during pregnancy, so it’s important to include plenty of iron-rich foods now.
“If you don’t have good iron stores, you’re more likely to feel tired,” warns Jo Ann Hattner, RD, a dietitian in Palo Alto, California.
Meat delivers a form of iron that’s easily absorbed by your body.
What should Expectant Mothers know on Health?
Maybe you’re a new mother and are expecting a new bundle of joy. Of course, you want to make sure things are just right for your baby, and part of that starts with the choices you make right now.
One avenue to consider is traffic pollution. Cutting that out of your life completely might not be practical, but there’s recent evidence that suggests it could be harming your unborn child.
In fact, women who are exposed to high traffic pollution during the second trimester are at a greater risk of giving birth to a child with fragile lungs.
What should Expectant Mothers watch out for?
1. Watch Out for Household Chemicals
Found in many common products, triclosan is a pretty nasty endocrine disruptor that could be harming your baby. For example, the germ-killer triclocarban—found in some bar soaps—is also a concern.
While it’s not completely clear what these endocrine disruptors can do, studies have linked triclosan to liver cancer, and more children are being exposed to both of these toxins in the womb.
2. Beware of BPA and BPS Products
Used in lots of plastic goods, BPA is bad news for the endocrine system, and its substitute BPS really isn’t much better. You probably get more BPA exposure than you think from those thermal receipts that are so popular nowadays, and if a company uses BPS…well, they can label that item as BPA-free.
Pregnant mothers might want to be especially wary of endocrine disruptors since a recent study suggests both BPA and BPS could cause “real and measurable changes in the development of a brain region. That plays a key role in fear, impulse-control, obesity, and early puberty.” It’s also a smart idea to check with your hospital about the BPA status of medical equipment.
3. Phthalates Can Harm Your Baby’s IQ
A recent report suggests children exposed to high levels of phthalates in the womb are more likely to have lower IQs—possibly by as much as seven points. One of the researchers commented a drop like that could have a significant impact on academic achievement.
But, unfortunately, phthalates are all around us. One of the toxins (di-n-butyl phthalate) could even be used in pill coatings. So while avoiding exposure might be impossible, reducing it definitely can’t hurt.
4. Is a Glass of Wine good for Expectant Mothers?
Resveratrol is a natural antioxidant in red wine that’s said to do everything from combat obesity to help with heart disease. Just one glass of red wine can’t hurt, right? Well, recent evidence suggests this ‘health food’ in a glass could damage your unborn baby’s pancreas.
Just keep in mind, however, that what might be healthy for the mother may not be that great for the developing fetus.
5. A New Nursery Can Be the Source of Harmful Toxins
When waiting for your new arrival, your instinct is to create the perfect nursery. Often, that could involve installing new flooring, but a recent study suggests that might not be the best idea.
We know these toxins, such as styrene and ethylbenzene are bad news. But they can be even worse for developing lungs—both before and after birth—potentially causing wheezing and other breathing problems.
6. Antidepressants Can Cause Autism
While you should never just stop taking your medication without a doctor’s consent, a recent study suggests a pregnant woman’s use of antidepressants could slightly increase the risk of autism in her child.
These findings are still new and more research is needed, but the trick for researchers will be balancing the mental health of mother and child. The good news, though, is taking prenatal vitamins could reduce the autism risk by half.
7. Apart from protecting the unborn, Toys can affect other kids
Studies reveal that early exposure to phthalates can harm male reproduction and influence early puberty. One study found higher than legal limits of lead and chromium in certain toys. So, for health’s sake, make sure to keep those toys away from little mouths.
What you eat during pregnancy affects your energy and well-being. It may also directly affect the health and development of your baby. Since calorie and nutrient needs are increased, it’s very important that you choose nutrient-dense, healthy foods
Gaining weight during pregnancy is normal, but it’s important to gain it in a healthy way. This benefits you, your baby and your health after the pregnancy. The list above should be a good start towards a healthy, well-nourished pregnancy.
Additionally, toxins can be such a danger to our children; unfortunately, many doctors don’t talk about these things with new and expecting mothers, so you need to educate yourself.
I hope you gathered some quality and fulfilling information in regards to Pregnancy Foods and Dietary Plans as discussed above. So, if you found the information shared above resourceful, please don’t forget to share with some of our friends and other readers online.
But, if you’ll have additional contribution ideas, research links or even more Medical FAQs, please don’t hesitate to Reach Out. Let this be one step towards learning as much as you can about what toxins can potentially harm your baby.
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