Pregnancy is such a delicate stage in a woman’s life where a proper balance in diet must be met. How a woman consumes nutrients during pregnancy will predict her health and that of the fetus. Furthermore, eating right is the best way to adjust easily during pregnancy. Here, we will share the right nutrients a pregnant woman should have for a healthy baby and body:
The first trimester
It’s usual for women to find it hard to maintain a balanced diet during pregnancy. Due to the changes in the body and the brain during gestation, a woman may eat more or less than the usual. Due to this, most of the time pregnant women gain or lose weight while carrying a baby. In some cases, during the first 3 months, a pregnant woman may eat more or eat less due to anxiety.
It’s important to keep in mind that the key to a healthy pregnancy is to avoid malnutrition and dehydration.
The right amount of calories
Pregnant women must consume around 300 calories daily more than the usual. To make sure that you’re consuming the right amount of nutrients, you must be able to listen to your body. A pregnant woman must eat whenever she feels hungry. Eat as much food as possible in the bottom part of the pyramid, especially during the first trimester.
If you find it hard to gain weight, you may start with eating small meals at first. Then, gradually increase your fat intake. Listen to your body, and eat when it tells you to, as you are now eating for two people instead of one.
The right amount of calcium
The second trimester of pregnancy is when you need to increase your calcium intake. Consume around 1,500 milligrams of calcium each day, which is more than a quart of milk. During the second trimester is where you and your baby need calcium the most. With that amount of required calcium, you must get it from different food sources. Aside from milk, you can also get calcium from dairy products, calcium fortified juices, and calcium tablets.
The right amount of fiber
Constipation is common for pregnant women due to the changes in the body, and its water content. Thus, to avoid it, a pregnant woman must eat the types of food that are rich in fiber. Eating whole grains rich in fiber, such as fruits and vegetables will help you avoid constipation. Pregnant women can also get their fiber supply from supplements like Metamucil and Citrucel.
The right amount of protein
Protein can be easily consumed from a normal diet. Unless you’re a vegan or a vegetarian, the right amount of protein consumption wouldn’t be a problem during gestation.
The right amount of iron
Most pregnant women experience a deficiency in iron during the early stage of pregnancy. It’s important to acquire enough amount of iron or it can result in fatigue or malnutrition. Pregnant women can get iron from sources like dark leafy green vegetables and meats. However, its’ not suggested to take iron supplements during pregnancy as it may cause internal symptoms such as cramping, constipation, or diarrhea.
You can get a good amount of needed vitamins in your diet if you’re eating right. However, you can always discuss with your doctor about the prenatal vitamins that you need. Folate is typically the most important vitamin a pregnant woman must have. If you’re already getting a good amount of Folate, you may avoid other types of vitamins. Still, you need to ask your doctor about it to be sure.