Pregnancy is the time period when whatever you eat matters to you and your baby. So maintaining a healthy and nutritious diet is must in this time period. In pregnancy period our body needs nutrients, vitamins and minerals in more quantity than the usual time. In short our body needs 300-600 more calories each day from the start of the third month till the baby is born. Poor diet habits or a diet not rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals can affect the baby’s development and may be the cause of several diseases. Eating healthy food also helps the body losing the pregnancy weight when the baby is born.
5 Things you should eat in the pregnancy period :
1. Fish Liver Oil
It is made up of oily liver of fish, which is very nutritious. The fish liver oil is very rich in DHA, EPA and omega-3 fatty acids which are important for the brain and eyes. Fish liver is also very high in Vitamin D which is again very essential and healthy for the human body.
2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet Potatoes are a very rich source of beta carotene, that is a plant compound converted into Vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is essential for the growth of the cells and tissues of the body. It is a major part of healthy development. Pregnant women are advised to increase the percentage of vitamin A in the body by 30%(10% to 40%). Animal based food products rich in Vitamin A should be avoided because they may cause toxicity.
3. Dairy Products
During the pregnancy period, consuming rich in protein and calcium products are very essential for the growing baby. Dairy products are the best dietary source of food products rich in protein, calcium, phosphorus and Vitamin B. Yogurt is very beneficial in this period because it contains more calcium than other dairy products. Probiotics supplements reduce the risk of vaginal infections, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and allergies.
This is a group of food which includes peas, beans, lentils, soybeans and peanuts. It is an amazing plant-based source rich in folate, protein, calcium, iron, fiber and all the nutrients which are important in the pregnancy period. Folate is a type of Vitamin B, which is very important for the mother and the growing baby during the first three months of the pregnancy period. However, most of the women don’t consume Folate during their pregnancy. Legumes contains high amount of Folate, one cup of legumes may provide 60%-90% of RDA.
Eggs are the ultimate source of nutrients and healthy food. They contain a little of every nutrient just like Milk. An egg contains 75 calories and also high quality vitamins & minerals, proteins and fat. It is also a great source of Choline which is very important for the development of brain and body. Low level of Choline may cause diseases like neural tube defects and possibly lead to decreased brain function in the baby. Certain food products should be consumed rarely, while others should be avoided completely.
5 Food products that should be avoided or minimised during pregnancy :
Caffeine is mainly found in coffee, tea, soft drinks and cocoa. It is absorbed really quickly and passes easily into the foetus. Unborn babies and their placentas don’t have the main enzyme needed to metabolise caffeine. Consuming high amount of caffeine can cause lack in growth and increase the risk of low birth weight. It also increases the risk of fatal diseases and chronic diseases.
2. Raw Sprouts
Raw Sprouts may be contaminated with defective bacteria in the seeds. Pregnant women should only consume cooked sprouts.
3. Undercooked or Raw Fish
Raw fish can cause several infections such as Norovirus, Vibrio, Salmonella, etc. Some infections affect only the mother while others can be hazardous for the child as well. It can cause dehydration and weakness in the mother and fatal diseases for the child. Undercooked or raw fish can be infected while cooking, smoking or drying.
4. Unpasteurised Dairy Products
Unpasteurised dairy products contain an array of harmful bacteria which is very hazardous for the mother and the foetus. Pasteurisation kills harmful bacteria in the dairy products without misbalancing the nutritional values.
Pregnant women are advised to avoid alcohol completely because it can be a reason of miscarriage or stillbirth. Any negative impact can cause lack in brain development of the foetus. It can also cause fatal alchohol syndrome. Food hygiene and preparation should always be maintained and should be full of nutritional values. Eating processed food during pregnancy can cause various diseases and other disorders. It is best to avoid the food on the list, because your health and the health of your unborn child should come first.