Congratulations, you're pregnant! Alongside all that preparation of the nursery, building the crib and stockpiling diapers, there is also much to prepare in the way of overall health. For the next nine months your body needs to be a temple, and it's going to crave and need far more nutrients, vitamins and minerals than it ever did before.
In fact, in the second and third trimester alone, you will need to consume an additional 350 to 500 calories just to ensure baby and you gets everything needed. New study has shown that many are not consuming enough nutrients as they should. Eating well during pregnancy will also reduce the risk of several conditions that are common in infants such as Eczema and Asthma (not conclusive but likely, also environmental factors and genetics play a role).
Whether it's peanuts, soybeans, chickpeas, beans, lentils or peas, many kinds of legumes are beneficial for you and your baby. Legumes are a goldmine when it comes to plant-based sources of folate, calcium, protein, fiber and iron. Folate, especially, is extremely important for both you and baby throughout pregnancy, and not enough of it can cause problems such as neural tube defects and greater risk of infection throughout life.
Not only do eggs offer complete flexibility at meal time, but they're also an exceptional food choice whenpregnant. Who would have thought that such a small item could contain so many essential nutrients for baby and you? Approximately 70 calories can be found in any medium to large egg, and this includes vitamins, minerals, protein and fat as well. However, eggs are also a good source of choline which is necessary for brain development. By eating just one egg, you can be getting a quarter of your daily choline requirements.
Vegetables, of course, are preferred at every stage of your life – not just when pregnant. But the significant increase of leafy greens into your diet will be beneficial for baby and you. Almost an entire vitamin alphabet can be found in the consumption of broccoli and dark leafy greens. From fiber, vitamin C, K and A through to folate, iron, calcium and potassium; what's not to love? You can also benefit from the antioxidants, all which aid in a healthy immune and digestion system.
There's a reason why hunters and gatherers used to come back to their campsite with baskets of berries. Aside from the fact they were delicious, they were also nutritious and packed with essential vitamins and minerals for a healthy tribe.
Whether you're buying them frozen or picking them fresh, berries are a good source of vitamin C and fiber. Vitamin C aids in the absorption of iron which is highly important as well.
It may not be a food, but you should be consuming more water than you probably do at this current point. If you find yourself in a bad mood, suffering from tiredness or a headache, it's not just a “standard sign” of pregnancy. You could be dehydrated.
Did you know, your blood volume increases by over a liter during pregnancy? By drinking 1-2 liters of water per day you can reduce the risks of urinary tract infections (UTIs) and even constipation. Even though water can be found in a lot of things including fruit and vegetables, it pays to have a bottle of water handy for sipping at during the day.