Pregnant and hungry? Are you looking for best foods for pregnancy? Something to make your stomach happy and your baby also happy? It’s a common refrain: Pregnancy is a time to eat healthy foods. We are here to help you turn your pantry into a one stop shop for healthy, delicious foods that will give your baby a great start in life. You should focus your healthy diet on whole foods that provide more good stuff than you would need if you weren’t pregnant.
- Vitamins and minerals
- Healthy fats
- Complex carbohydrates
- Fiber and fluids
These are super nutritious foods you can eat while you’re pregnant to ensure you meet your nutrient goals. This list contains a varity of best foods for pregnancy.
You need extra calcium and protein during pregnancy. You should consider dairy products such as yogurt, cheese, and milk. Two types of high-quality protein are found in dairy products: casein, and whey. Dairy is the best source of calcium and contains high levels of vitamin B vitamins, magnesium and zinc. Greek yogurt is particularly beneficial because it contains more calcium than other dairy products. Some yogurts also contain probiotic bacteria that supports digestive health.
You may be able to tolerate yogurt, particularly probiotic yogurt, if you are lactose intolerant. To find out if it is possible to test it, consult your doctor. There are many yogurt parfaits, smoothies, and lassi options available.
This food group includes legumes, beans and peas. Legumes provide great plant-based sources for fiber, protein and iron. Nutritionist consider them as the Best Foods For Pregnancy. Folate (B9) is one of the most important B vitamins. Folate is essential for both you and your baby, particularly in the first trimester and before. You will need 600 micrograms of folate each day. This can be difficult to get with just food.
However, adding legumes can help you get there along supplementation based upon your doctor’s recommendation. Legumes are also very high in fiber. Many varieties also contain high levels of iron, magnesium and potassium. You might consider adding legumes into your diet. This could include meals such as hummus on whole grains toast, black beans in taco salad, and a lentil curry.
Sweet potatoes can be prepared in a variety of ways and are full of beta carotene. This compound is used to make vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is vital for the development of babies. Be aware of high levels of vitamin A from animal sources, such as organ meats. Sweet potatoes are a good source of fiber and beta carotene.
Fiber helps you feel fuller for longer periods of time, lowers blood sugar spikes and improves digestion health which can really help if you have Pregnancy constipation. Sweet potatoes make a great base for your morning Avocado Toast.
Salmon is delicious smoked on whole wheat bread, teriyaki grilled, and with pesto. Salmon has a lot of health benefits, and can help your baby’s brain develop. Wait! Have you been warned to reduce your seafood intake because of the mercury or other contaminants found in high-mercury fish? Fatty fish such as salmon can be eaten. These are high mercury fish that you should avoid
- King mackerel
- bigeye tuna
- Tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico
Salmon is one of the few natural sources for vitamin D that is not lacking in most people. Vitamin D is essential for immune function and bone health.
These amazing, edible eggs are the best health food because they contain just a small amount of every nutrient that you require. Large eggs contain approximately 80 calories, high quality protein, fat, as well as many vitamins and minerals. Choline is a vital nutrient in pregnancy. Eggs are a good source. It is essential for baby’s brain development, and prevents spinal and brain developmental abnormalities. One whole egg has 147 mg (mg)of Choline.
This will bring you closer to the 450mg per day recommended choline intake while pregnant (though further studies are being done in order to confirm this). These are the best ways to prepare eggs. You can make spinach feta wraps with them or a chickpea scramble.
Broccoli, Lark leafy Greens and Other Vegetables
This is no surprise: Broccoli, dark green vegetables like kale, and spinach are packed with all the nutrients you need. Even if they aren’t your favorite, you can sneak them into many different dishes. They provide fiber, vitamin C and vitamin K as well as vitamin A, calcium iron, folate and potassium. These are a boon for green goodness. Green vegetables are a great way to get vitamins and to prevent constipation. Vegetables also have a lower risk of low birth weight.
Proteins and lean meats
Lean meats, poultry, and pork are all excellent sources of high-quality protein. Beef and pork are rich in iron, cholesterol, and other vitamins that you will need more during pregnancy. Red blood cells use iron as part of hemoglobin.
Iron is an essential mineral. Your blood volume will increase, so you’ll need to have more iron. This is especially important in your third trimester. Low iron levels in the early and middle stages of pregnancy can lead to iron deficiency, which may increase the chance of low birth weight or other complications. Iron can be difficult to get from meals, especially if there is an aversion or you are vegetarian or vegan.
For those who are able to, eating lean red meat may increase your iron intake. Pro tip: Combining vitamin C-rich foods such as bell peppers and oranges with iron rich foods can help increase absorption . Add some vitamin-C-rich tomato slices to your turkey burger, or make this steak & mango salad.
How to Eat it?
Tenderloin and loin chop, poultry like chicken or turkey, and lamb leg and arm are all suitable. You only need a little, so make sure to add it to your favorite vegetable-filled soups, salads, rice, or noodle dishes. A meat should be cooked at 160 to 165°F to kill bacteria that can cause illness, such as Salmonella and E. coli.
Berries contain a lot of goodness, including water, healthy carbs and vitamin C. They also have fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins. Berries have a low glycemic value so they shouldn’t cause large spikes of blood sugar. Berries make a great snack because they are both high in water and fiber. They are rich in flavor and nutrition but have very few calories. Blueberries, raspberries and goji berries are some of the best berries for pregnant women.
whole grain is rich in fiber, vitamins, plant compounds, unlike their refined counterparts. Instead of white bread, pasta, or white rice, think quinoa and brown rice, wheatberries, and barley. Whole grains such as oats, quinoa and others have a good amount of protein. These vitamins also provide a lot of important nutrients that pregnant women often lack: B vitamins, fiber and mag. There are many ways to add whole grains to your meals, but this quinoa is our favorite and this sweet potato bowl are our favorites.
The Best Foods for Pregnancy: Avocados
Avocados have a high amount of monounsaturated fat acids. This makes them an unusual and special fruit. They are rich and buttery, which makes them perfect for adding creaminess and depth to dishes. They are also rich in fiber, B vitamins (especially folate), Vitamin K, potassium and copper, as well as vitamin E and vitamin C.
Avocados are an excellent choice for pregnant women (and all year round) due to their high levels of healthy fats, folate and potassium. Healthy fats are good for the brain, skin, and tissues. Folate may also help to prevent developmental abnormalities, such as spina bifurca, neural tube defects, and spinal cord injuries like spina bifida. Potassium can help with leg cramps. This is a side effect that some women experience during pregnancy. In fact, avocados contain more potassium than bananas.
Dried fruits are generally high in calories and fiber. They also contain many vitamins and minerals. A single piece of dried fruit has the same nutrients as fresh fruits, but without the water and in a smaller amount. A single serving of dried fruits can provide a substantial amount of recommended daily intakes of many vitamins, such as folate, iron and potassium.
Prunes contain fiber, potassium and vitamin K. Dates contain high levels of fiber, potassium and iron as well as plant compounds. Dried fruits contain high levels of natural sugar. Avoid candied varieties which can contain more sugar. Dried fruit can help you increase your nutrient and calorie intake. However, it is not advised to eat more than one portion at a given time. For a quick, protein- and fiber-rich snack, add a small amount to a trail mixture with nuts or seeds.
Fish liver oil
The oily liver of fish is what makes fish liver oil, which is most commonly cod. It is rich in omega-3 fatty acids EPA, DHA, which are vital for the development of the eye and brain of a fetus. Supplementing with fish oil could help prevent preterm births and may be beneficial for fetal eyes development. Vitamin D is also high in fish liver oil, which many people aren’t getting enough.
For those who don’t eat seafood often or take supplements with vitamin D or omega-3, it may prove to be very beneficial. One tablespoon (15 milliliters) or one teaspoon of fish oil will provide more than the daily recommended intake of vitamin A, vitamin D and omega-3. It is not recommended that you consume more than one serving of preformed vitamin A per day. This can pose a danger to your baby’s health. Additionally, high levels of omega-3 could cause blood to thin. You can reach your omega-3 goals by eating low-mercury fish such as salmon, sardines and canned light tuna.
Water Is Your Friend During Pregnancy
Let’s be real: Everyone needs to keep hydrated. Pregnant women are especially vulnerable. The blood volume of pregnant women increases by approximately 45 per cent. Your baby’s body will send hydration through your body, but you can become dehydrated if you don’t monitor your water intake. Mild dehydration during pregnancy can cause headaches, anxiety and tiredness.
You can also increase your water intake to help with constipation, and lower your risk of developing urinary tract infections. These are very common during pregnancy. The general guidelines suggest that pregnant women consume 80 ounces (2.3 Liters) of water daily . The amount that you actually need may vary. Talk to your doctor about your needs.
Remember that water can also be obtained from other food and beverages such as fruits, vegetables, and coffee. Pro tip: Keep a reusable water container handy so you don’t get thirsty throughout the day. This vegetarian protein source is worthy of a place on any plate, regardless of whether you are a meat-eater or not. A cup of cooked lentils provides around 17 grams protein and 7 mg of iron.
Lentils Are One Of The Best Foods For Pregnancy
Lentils also contain a high amount of B vitamin folate (also known as folic acid supplements). This is essential for forming the baby’s brain and protecting against neural-tube defects such as spina bifida. Spine disorder occurs when a spine doesn’t form correctly. Lentils are high in fiber which can help prevent constipation and keep your digestive system healthy.
How to cook them:
To top it all, lentils can be used in almost every dish. Use firm black or French lentils for salads. You can also substitute chickpeas with softer brown lentils for your favorite hummus recipe. Or make a stew-like soup using creamy, quick-cooking red beans.
Quinoa is a great addition to your pre-pregnancy food list. Although technically a grain, the whole grain, which is actually a seed, provides 8 grams of protein and 5 grams fiber per cooked cup. It also contains small amounts of calcium and magnesium as well as potassium and zinc.
How to Cook It:
Quinoa takes less than 20 minutes to cook. Mix it with black beans and roasted sweet potatoes to make a delicious burrito. Or, you can cook it in milk for oatmeal-style porridge.
The Bottom Line
Your baby is just waiting for you to give him all the nutritious foods that come with a balanced diet of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and healthy fats. There are many delicious choices that will satisfy your baby and you. Let your healthcare team know about your eating habits and help you to create a plan.