Eating healthily during pregnancy will help your baby to develop and grow. Eating healthily often means just changing the amounts of different foods you eat so that your diet is varied, rather than cutting out all your favourites. Eat a variety of foods to get all the nutrients you need. Recommended daily servings include 6-11 servings of breads and grains, two to four servings of fruit, four or more servings of vegetables, four servings of dairy products, and three servings of protein sources (meat, poultry, fish, eggs or nuts). Use fats and sweets sparingly.
Eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables every day, because these provide vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre, which helps digestion and can help prevent constipation. These can be fresh, frozen, canned, dried or juiced. Pregnant women need 70 mg of vitamin C a day, Choose from oranges, grapefruits, strawberries, honeydew, papaya, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, green peppers, tomatoes, and mustard greens. Choose at least one source of vitamin A every other day. Sources of vitamin A include carrots, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, spinach, water squash, turnip greens, beet greens, apricots, and cantaloupe.
Starchy foods are an important source of energy, vitamins and fibre, they include bread, potatoes, breakfast cereals, rice, pasta, noodles, maize, millet, oats, and sweet potatoes. These foods should be the main part of every meal. Choose wholemeal instead of processed (white) varieties, or potatoes with their skins on, when you can as they contain more fibre.
Sources of protein include, meat (but avoid liver), fish, poultry, eggs, beans, pulses and nuts. Always choose lean cuts of meat, remove the skin from poultry, and try not to add extra fat or oil when cooking meat. You should eat at least two portions of fish a week, one of which should be oily fish such as salmon, sardines or mackerel.
Eat two to three portions of dairy foods such as milk, cheese, fromage frais and yoghurt are important in pregnancy, they are rich in calcium and other nutrients that your growing baby needs.
Avoid sugary foods and drinks and food high in fat content, which are often high in calories which can contribute to weight gain and can increase your chances of getting gestational diabetes.
You should take a prenatal vitamin supplement every day, to make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals in your daily diet while pregnant. Your doctor can recommend an over-the-counter brand or prescribe a prenatal vitamin for you.
To ensure you are getting 27 mg of iron daily, eat at least three servings of iron-rich foods, such as lean meats, spinach, beans, and breakfast cereals each day.
Every pregnant woman needs at least 0.4 mg of folic acid per day to help prevent neural tube defects such as spina bifida. Choose at least one good source of folic acid every day, like dark green leafy vegetables, veal, and legumes (lima beans, black beans, black-eyed peas and chickpeas).
250 micrograms of iodine a day is necessary to help ensure your baby’s brain and nervous system development. Choose from a variety of dairy products, milk, cheese (especially cottage cheese), yogurts, as well as baked potatoes, and limited amounts of cod, salmon and shrimp.
Increasing and reducing certain foods can help many common pregnancy symptoms. Adequate protein such as meat , fish, poultry, eggs, beans, pulses , high levels of omega 3, found in fish, tofu, almonds and walnuts almonds, anti oxidants found in cranberries, blueberries, and blackberries, beans, artichokes, and russet potatoes, pecans, walnuts, and hazelnuts, Vitamins D3/K2, spending more time in the sun or taking supplements and calcium help pre eclampsia. Celery, watercress, parsley, apples, Vitamin B, and reduction in salts and sugars helps fluid retention.
Protein, ginger tea, omega 3 helps morning sickness.