Pregnancy can really change how you perceive the world around you. As an expectant mother, you are already eating for two. Your hormones have gone on a roller coaster ride and you feel everything from morning sickness to diabetic symptoms. However, the joy of being a mother conceals every problem that you go through and when those 9 months are over, you get a healthy and beautiful baby. However, most women are very confused about their health status during pregnancy. Regular visits to your OB Gyn are suggested by us. However, apart from maintaining your visiting schedule to the doctor, you also need to make sure that you eat a very healthy diet during pregnancy.

Understand the changes in your body

Most of us are guilty of eating too less or going on fad diets to lose weight. For some women, undergoing diet changes during pregnancy is all about staying lean. They will still avoid calories and carbs and say a total goodbye to fats. As a result, their body is deprived of essential nutrients during pregnancy and their child also has to suffer the consequences of the same.

You need to understand that weight gain during pregnancy is not bad. In fact, it is healthy to gain weight during pregnancy. Remember, you are eating for two. Most of this weight will be gone after delivery. So don’t feel too alarmed at the ascending numbers on the weighing scale. It is a good sign that your baby is developing in a healthy way. Do not think that a diet is all about maintaining the ‘right weight’ during pregnancy. That is just a fad and does not really work well in the favor of your baby. Here, diet means eating a balanced meal and getting all the essential nutrients that help you and your baby stay healthy.

A pregnant woman often faces issues like lowered blood pressure, problems in sleeping and using the toilet, problems in walking or standing for long and more. Sometimes, women may also feel light cramps in their legs. The hormones in a woman’s body are running the race of their life and they work tirelessly day and night to nurture your baby. You would be surprised at the pace at which your baby develops. Hence, do yourself a favor. Don’t believe any fad diets during pregnancy. Only focus on getting the right nutrition for yourself. Your body will change now and the diet has to be according to these changes only.

Does a pre-pregnancy diet help?

If you have planned a pregnancy, then a pre-pregnancy diet is certainly going to help you in a lot of ways. If you want to take this route for your pregnancy, then you must definitely give yourself a few months in order to get in the right shape for pregnancy. First of all, go to the doctor and check whether you have any deficiencies. This could be a folate deficiency, a certain vitamin deficiency or something similar. If you are obese, underweight or a diabetic, then you must consult your doctor before pregnancy. The same rule applies for women with cardiac troubles.

You have to check if there is any significant risk factor related to your pregnancy. If yes, then you must work on these issues before you conceive. Work on your diet and fill up the nutritional deficiencies in the first place. A detoxification routine will also be helpful for you in this case. Some health issues have nutritional deficiencies as their underlying causes. So such problems will be gone. You can try a combination of diet, exercise or yoga in order to lower down your risk factors after that. This shall help you in making your pregnancy healthier.

The pregnancy diet

For pregnant women, it is high time that they take good care of their diet. You can meet a diet consultant in order to find the best diet according to your age and body type. However, there are a few general rules that you can keep in mind while preparing a meal for yourself. Before we can talk about these ideas, let us check out how you can make your breakfast healthier. Why are we focusing on the breakfast? It is because you must be able to kick start your day with a power packed meal. A good breakfast can give you a lot of energy through the day, minimize cravings and also ensure that you get a good dosage of nutrients right when you start your day.

Breakfast Battles- winning the day

 

  • You should ideally be starting your day with some fresh fruits or fruit juices. Try to stay away from packaged juices as much as you can. They include more sugar than nutrients. The good old pancakes can actually come in handy for busy moms who need to go to work. A glass of milk is also a good option. You can also opt for a glass of orange juice. However, make sure that you don’t stop here. Don’t just drink a glass of milk or juice and start working. You need something more filling at this point. Eggs can be good option but avoid the sunny side up variety. Go for omelets.
  • Oats can also be a good option to start your day. However, make sure that you are eating some fresh fruits or vegetables along with the oats. It will keep you fit, provide fiber and also ensure that you feel full.
  • It will be better to avoid coffee in the morning. If you love coffee, then cut back the intake to merely 2 cups a today. Anything more than that is not healthy for your baby.
  • Try some beans if that works well for you. A fistful of nuts can be helpful in providing you something to munch on throughout the day.

 

Many women feel morning sickness during pregnancy. As a result of this, they are unable to eat a breakfast. However, even in this case, you must eat at least something. It would help you in staying full and give you a little morning boost. In such a case, you must eat very small portions again and again as they will help you in getting the energy you need throughout the day. Women who feel morning sickness should also avoid eating a heavy dinner as it may aggravate the symptoms. Your small meals can include crackers, toasts, roasted nuts, dried apricots and other such healthy food items. A grilled cheese sandwich can be avoided but it can be had as an occasional indulgence for sure. You will certainly enjoy it. If you like burgers and pizzas, then ensure that you stuff them with fresh cheese and vegetables.

The pregnancy diet should always be full of fresh and organic products. Yes, canned and processed foods are a good option for the days when you are running late for your work. However, you should try to avoid them as much as possible. Also, try to opt for all organic products. Going to a local farmer’s market will certainly help you in packing all the nutrition you need with farm fresh produce that is produced locally. During these 9 months, eat seasonal fruits and vegetables more than their frozen counterparts. This shall help you get better nutrition. Moreover, you should focus only on whole grains. Do not give in to products that have ‘green’, ‘whole grain’, ‘organic’ etc. written on their packaging. You must check yourself whether these products are what they are being marketed as. ‘Gluten free’ is the word that you will come across most often. Don’t just look at the labels. Look at the real ingredients of the food that you are buying.

What to drink during pregnancy?

It is very important to stay hydrated during a pregnancy. In fact, you should ensure that you are drinking more than 8 glasses of water every day. Coffee is best avoided during this time. However, a couple of cups during a day will not do much harm. Alcohol must be avoided completely during pregnancy. It could be very harmful for your child. In addition to this, you are at a greater risk of physically damage the fetus during this time.

As alcohol affects our body balance, you could easily lose balance and fall down. Alcohol addict mothers also develop greater chances of having still births or inducing some nutritional deficiencies in their children. Hence, avoid substance abuse to the best possible extent. Make plain water your best buddy during pregnancy. You can have green tea as well during this time. Fresh fruit juice can also be a good option for you. You should not replace a meal with a green smoothie at this time. However, smaller green smoothie shots can work really well if taken as snacks rather than entire meals.

What do doctors suggest?

Doctors often suggest women to eat what they like, if they are following a few simple diet tips. The most important thing about pregnancy diets is nutrition content. You can have pizza if you like or munch on some stir fried veggies if you like. Just keep the following things in mind when you are pregnant.

  • You should be eating dark leafy vegetables. Two servings of such veggies are enough for a day.
  • Citrus fruits are the most important for pregnant ladies. Opt for one serving each day of a citrus fruit in order to get the best results for your health.
  • You should also have orange vegetables. The darker the orange, the better the vegetable for your health. One serving of such veggies will be good.
  • Don’t forget about dairy. However, focus only on low-fat or non-fat varieties of milk and dairy products. You should have at least three servings of these products.
  • Cereals and breads are the most essential. Make sure you have at least 6 servings of these.
  • The meats you eat should be extra lean. Opt for fish or chicken sans the skin. However, if you are a vegetarian, then take three servings of bean instead.
  • At least eight glasses of water is a must.

There is no hard and fast rule about what you should eat and when. The women who can eat a bigger meal during breakfast must continue to do so and decrease the size of the meal through the day. The women who suffer from morning sickness can eat the smallest meal in breakfast and increase the size of the meal during dinner. However, it is advised not to eat a very heavy meal. Some doctors suggest smaller breakfasts and larger dinners during the first trimester as morning sickness becomes very likely for all women. They also suggest that women should reverse the diet during the last trimester in order to avoid heartburn. You can eat whatever you like as long as you are eating in moderation. The nutrition comes first.

Does it sound too confusing?

If you have already been living a very healthy lifestyle, then you must already be familiar with these rules. However, if you feel that these rules are too confusing, then you must start following them one by one. It would help you during your pregnancy. Simply abstain from alcohol and smoke and limit caffeine intake. Then start including fresh veggies and fruits in your diet one by one. In this way, you will get all the benefits of this diet.

Some moderate form of exercise will also be good for you. You can focus on yoga or talk to an instructor regarding light exercise for yourself. By the time you find the right exercise routine, focus on 30 minutes of activity every day. This could even be in the form of 15 minutes of walk in the morning and evening. In the end, we would like to welcome you onboard for a healthy and safe pregnancy. We hope that you will have a healthy and beautiful baby who will bring a lot of joy in your life. In the meanwhile, follow the steps that we have mentioned above to get the right diet.

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