Diet is an important aspect of pregnancy and can contribute to your health as well as the baby’s. In fact, diet is also important before you get pregnant, and anyone even thinking about trying for a baby should ensure that they switch to a healthy and balanced diet if they are not on one already. This is because you will need all the nutrients you can get to contribute to yours and your baby’s health, and by eating the right diet and the right portions, you can ensure that your body and the baby get the vitamins required to help with a healthy pregnancy. There is plenty of advice available for pregnant women – or even those considering getting pregnant – with regards to diet, and your doctor, nurse, or dietician can help with a balanced and nutritious eating plan.
Whether or not you will need to change your diet when you find out you are pregnant will depend upon what your diet was like before you were pregnant. Many women decide to change their diet for the better when they decide that they want to try for a baby rather than waiting until they are successful, and for these people minimal changes are required. However, if your diet consist of very little in the way of vitamins, minerals, and other valuable nutrients, it is important to switch to a healthy and balanced diet once your find out that you are pregnant.
There are a number of food types that should make up the healthy and balanced diet of a pregnant woman, and this is to ensure that the pregnant woman and the unborn baby get the necessary vitamins and minerals for healthy pregnancy and healthy development. Fruit and vegetables are an important part of the diet, and pregnant women should aim for seven combined servings of fruit and vegetables each day. These vegetables and fruits provide a wide range of nutrients, minerals, vitamins, and even fiber.
Whole grain foods are also important as part of the healthy diet for a pregnant woman. You can opt for around nine servings of products such as bread, pasta, rice, and cereals. Again, these products contain a range of vitamins and nutrients as well as fiber than can form part of a healthy diet for pregnant women. You can also get a large proportion of the iron needed throughout pregnancy by eating these products as part of your diet.
Dairy products are also important for pregnant women due to the calcium that these food types provide. Pregnant women should aim for four or more servings of dairy products, including cheese, low fat milk, and yoghurt. You can enjoy a range of vitamins as well as calcium from these products, making them another essential part of a healthy diet for pregnant women.
As a pregnant woman you also need protein, and this is estimated at around sixty grams per day. Meat, fish and poultry are valuable sources of protein, but it is important to ensure that you do not eat undercooked or uncooked meat and fish. Eggs and nuts are also good forms of protein, but it is always best to check with your doctor with regards to the most suitable sources of protein whilst you are pregnant. Fish, for example, can contain high levels of mercury, which can be harmful to your baby, and therefore you should check these foods with your dietician, doctor or nurse to see which are the safe ones to eat during pregnancy.
You may also find that you need supplements during your pregnancy to complement your healthy diet and to ensure that you are receiving the recommended doses of vitamins such as iron. Always speak to your doctor before taking any supplements during pregnancy, as your doctor can provide advice on which supplements will best suit you and benefit you during your pregnancy.
And, finally, keep drinking plenty of water to aid your healthy diet. Water will keep you hydrated, and also helps to carry the nutrients that you take in through your diet to the baby. You should aim for six or more glasses of water a day, based on an 8oz glass. Adequate water levels can helps to reduce the risk of problems such as bladder infections and constipation, and can help to prevent premature labor.
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