As a pregnant mother, you’re eating for two people, or sometimes more! It’s perfectly natural for you to want to eat right for your beautiful baby. There’s a lot of advice out there, and it can be confusing to figure out what you need to ensure that you and your baby are healthy.
Don’t Go Overboard
Although we speak about “eating for two”, in reality, you are only going to eat just a few extra calories. This means you may just have to add a healthy snack daily.
If you’re in your first trimester, you should just add 100 to 200 calories a day. In your second trimester, you should add 300 to 500 calories to your diet daily. In your third trimester, you should add 300 to 500 calories daily.
You must eat calcium-rich foods and triage fat-soluble vitamins A, D, and K2. This includes beans, lentils, and leafy greens.
Mothers should also eat foods rich in folate (B9), omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B6, and choline.
Folate (B9) makes and repairs DNA and prevents neural tube defects, which are essential in the first trimester. Liver and other organ meats, as well as leafy greens, such as kale, spinach, collard greens, and dandelion leaves, are your best sources of folate. You should also try pinto beans, chickpeas, lentils, beets, and avocado, other beautiful folate sources.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for developing your baby’s brain and eyesight. Increased intakes will boost your baby’s memory, IQ, and cognition. You may have to supplement to get the desired amount of omega-3. You should eat mercury-rich fish, such as sardines, wild salmon, and herring. Many pregnant mums don’t like to eat fish when pregnant, so you can speak to your doctor about getting supplements.
Vitamin B6 is important for metabolizing protein, carbohydrates, and fats, and it also helps form red blood cells and supports the development of the brain and your nervous system. Vitamin B6 will help in your first trimester when you are likely to have nausea and vomiting. You can get vitamin B6 from fish, organ meats such as liver (preferably free-range), poultry, meat-on-bone, chickpeas, potatoes, bananas, and pistachios.
Choline is essential for preventing neural tube defects. It will also help with your brain’s development and the development of the nervous system. It will also help develop your baby’s memory, mood regulation, and cognitive abilities. According to Cornell University, if a pregnant woman increases her choline intake in the third trimester (from 480 mg/day to 930 mg/day), the risk of the baby developing metabolic and chronic diseases related to stress, such as high blood pressure. They’re as relaxing for a baby as one spa treatment spa. Your best sources of choline are eggs and liver. If you can’t eat eggs and liver during pregnancy, then ensure that your prenatal vitamins have choline.