Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.
About Pregnancy And Diet Of A Pregnant Woman
Pregnancy is the time when a lot of changes, both emotional and physiological, take place in the mother to be. She has to eat both for her increased requirements and that of the growing fetus as also for the lactation that will follow later.
This does not mean that she has simply to increase the quantity of food eaten. Though the quantity of food has to be increased correspondingly it has to be seen that the food that is eaten is much higher in overall nutrients as well as certain critical nutrients. These are especially needed at this stage and are necessary for the mom to be so that the growing fetus can draw its requirement from the mother.
Want to know what do you eat while pregnant? Below are some ideas for the diet of a pregnant woman.
Eating a balanced diet is a prerequisite no doubt but at the same time, it has to be ensured that it provides increased levels of calories, protein, vitamins and minerals too. It has to be ensured that considerable fat is stored for the increasing requirements of the growing fetus, the soon to follow lactation and other requirements if need be.
A weight gain of 10 - 15 kgs during pregnancy is desirable for a woman of normal weight.
This hub will also answer some questions like :
- What do you eat while pregnant?
- What foods should a pregnant woman avoid?
- Fruits to eat during pregnancy?
- What vitamins should pregnant women take?
- Herbs to avoid during pregnancy?
- Herbs considered safe during pregnancy?
Given below is a list of some must-have foods to eat when pregnant. The wonderful thing is that these foods are available year-round and can be prepared easily and quickly.
What Are The Increased Requirements During Pregnancy
Pregnant women need to increase fat, protein, vitamins, minerals, fibre and water consumption.
An extra 15 grams of protein every day, over and above the daily requirement for women, is needed. This can be met from sources like nuts, milk, whole grains, pulses, eggs and cheese.
Though the fetal organs are rich in fat stores, the essential fatty acids have to be supplied on a daily basis. This is very important.
Vitamins A to maintain cells and vision, Vitamin D for calcium absorption and metabolism, Vitamin E to prevent chances of abortion, Vitamin K to prevent bleeding and haemorrhages, Folic acid to prevent anaemia, to aid in normal growth and prevent birth defects in the fetus.
A good supply of calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, iodine is to be ensured to help in the normal growth of the fetus and ensure a complication-free pregnancy.
Constipation is a common condition in pregnancy. Hence fibre-rich foods like whole grains, whole legumes, vegetables and fruits with the skin should be consumed to ensure enough fibre intake.
The importance of enough water cannot be overemphasized in pregnancy. It is needed to ensure proper hydration of the body, prevent constipation, piles and fissures, swelling of the feet and ankles, and to remove toxins from the body.
The 15 Must Have Foods In The Diet Of A Pregnant Woman
Below is a list of the nutritionally very important foods a pregnant woman must have, as often as she can, preferably every day.
Milk should become an integral part of the diet of the mom to be and should be consumed daily. It is better to consume skimmed milk which provides more than 300mg calcium and 8 grams protein in a cup. This is helpful in meeting the increased demands of both the growing fetus and the pregnant woman.
Just a single serving of plain yoghurt provides 25% of the daily needs of protein. It also provides enough calcium and a number of vitamins and minerals.
The best yogurt is the one prepared at home but if you have to buy it then buy the one that is labelled as having live cultures as this type of yoghurt helps to keep the digestive system functioning smoothly.
Do not buy the ones in which the fruits are mixed as they are loaded with sugar. Instead you can add honey or fresh fruit of your choice to the homemade or the purchased one.
They are good sources of protein and zinc which are needed for optimum muscle health. During pregnancy, the various muscles get stretched in different ways.
Pumpkin seeds also contain decent amounts of sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus to keep the muscles healthy and well hydrated.