Diet tips for a Pregnant Women

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A normal women has to pass through different phases of life which has its own demands, difficulties, addition of diet and many more. Pregnancy is the period which brings lots of happiness but a lots of demands too. This time a woman has to stay well with diet, mental fitness and many more. If one is careless, then the neonates has to suffer with malnutrition and other related diseases.

Here, our concerned topic is diet during pregnancy and widely we will be dealing with the same criterion. There is a misconception related to healthy eating during pregnancy; it is said that the expecting mother now has to ‘eat for two’ in order that the mother and the developing foetus both stays safe. But this is not so correct! The UK Dietary References values for pregnancy suggest that, on average, women need only extra 200 cals/day during the last 3 months of pregnancy. Other expert guidelines suggest up to an extra 300 cals/day during the last 4-5 months.

Nutrition for pregnancy

Nutrition for pregnancy

This means you don’t need to eat for two- if you are mean doubling the calorie intake! Certainly, in the first few months of pregnancy you hardly need eat any extra at all. Research shows that in pregnancy the body adapts to conserve energy, especially if you don’t eat enough, by slowing down thyroid gland activity. At this time, the foetus is so small it doesn’t need many calories-rather it needs nutrients for growth and health. Also, towards the end of pregnancy the mother is naturally less active and calories are conserved that way, too. Also during pregnancy, the gastrointestinal system becomes more efficient in absorbing nutrients.

Why stretch marks occur during pregnancy?

As a fact, during pregnancy your stomach and abdominal area expands which lead to stretch marks on skin. These marks differ as per your diet intake and lifestyle. Some experts believe that the stretch marks common during pregnancy can be prevented with a diet rich in Vitamin E, B5, lean protein and food stuffs like lentils, pulses, wheat germ, nuts, whole grains etc. These provides warmth to your skin thus even when the body expands there is a very less or no marks on skin.

Many of us thinks that, the developing foetus weighs to 3-4 kg; but still why during pregnancy the weight raises 10-12 kg more. The answer of this question of present in the chart given below which describes the materials and their weigh which is important and develops with the development of baby.

Total weight gain during pregnancy and its amounts-

Developing materials in wombAmount
Foetus3-4 kg
Amniotic fluid1 kg
Placenta700 gm
Enlarged uterus1 kg
Mammary glands700 gm
Extra blood2 kg
Extra tissue fluid1 kg
Total9-10 kg

Now, this was the common things related to Pregnancy. Our next topic will be what should be the diet intake of a pregnant women. Here, we will be discussing about the calorie intake, food to avoid, foods to include and meal ideas during pregnancy.

Additional daily nutrient requirement for pregnancy

Stages of Pregnancy

Stages of Pregnancy

  1. Extra calories- 200-300 (last few months of pregnancy only)
  2. Extra protein- 6 gm
  3. Vitamin A- extra 100ug
  4. Vitamin B1- extra 0.1 mg for last few months of pregnancy only
  5. Vitamin B2- Extra 0.3 mg
  6. Folate- extra 0.3 mg
  7. Vitamin C- extra 10 mg
  8. Vitamin D- extra 10ug

Meal ideas during pregnancy:-

It becomes a tough question; what to eat and what not to eat during pregnancy. Many women even gets nervous which is not a bit good. Following are the list of food stuffs which are good during pregnancy.

BreakfastsLunchesEvening mealsDesserts
Orange juice or fresh orangeTuna with tomatoesBowl of fresh and steamed vegetablesLow fat ice-cream with fruit dressing
Toasts with skimmed milkHard-boiled eggsMacaroni cheese with added broccoli floretsRice pudding with fresh fruits
Baked beans and kiwi fruitFrench bread and French dressingSalmon portion with new potatoesBanana with low-fat custard
Strawberries with half-fat Greek yoghurtCheddar, carrots and sunflower seedsBrown rice with green vegetablesBerries
1 boiled egg with whole wheat toastHerb and green saladCheeseburger with crispy potato skins
GrapefruitWell cooked chicken with mixed saladStir-fry brightly coloured vegetables and chopped chillies

Food to avoid during pregnancy:-

Food and diet plays a vital role in successful pregnancy, but sometimes due to lack of knowledge many women eat something which is not advisable. There are many food stuffs which should be strictly restricted during pregnancy. Following are the list of food stuffs which are not good during pregnancy-

  1. Liver is not good. It contains a high amount of Vitamin a which can be toxic during pregnancy and can cause birth defects.
  2. Cod liver oil and supplements
  3. Sharks, swordfish etc
  4. Coffee and all caffeine products are bad
  5. Alcohol; in little amount is okay but is better to give up totally
  6. Raw meat or poultry
  7. Pineapple can cause miscarriages; and should not be taken
  8. Unpasteurized milk
  9. Refined food items does heavy harm to both mother and the foetus
  10. Candies, toffee, heavy spiced and junk food etc are also bad.

So, in this way we saw what should be a correct diet of a pregnant mother. This time the female should be creative, happy-minded, calm and jolly. all these mental set-ups plays a vital role for the arrival of a healthy and cute baby.

She is a learner and health conscious person. She is always interested in seeking knowledge regarding Ayurveda, herbal medicine and Yoga to cure any health ailments naturally.
She holds a Bachelor Degree in Alternative Medicine.

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