For all expecting mothers, it is important to have a nutritious diet. A pregnant woman’s diet is the source of nourishment for the baby in her womb. Extra calories are required by the body during the gestation period and therefore, health experts recommend eating healthy during this period. There is no other time when nutrition is as important to the body as it is during pregnancy.
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Some of the essential things a pregnant woman should include in her diet are:
1) Fruits and Vegetables: Citrus fruits are highly recommended along with green-leafy vegetables. One should have 5 servings of fruits in a day.
2) Milk products which contain low-fat, protein-rich beans and grains. Three servings during the day.
3) Proteins: If you are a vegetarian, include pulses, dals, cereals, nuts and whole grains in your daily diet to make up for your body’s requirement of protein. Fish, Meat and Poultry provide your body with the required amount of concentrated proteins. Eggs give a good number of calories and are the source of choline, which helps in the development of the brain of the foetus. Doctors recommend at least one egg daily during pregnancy.
4) Calcium and Iron: An expecting woman requires a lot of calcium and iron. Milk, cheese, yoghurt contains calcium. Meat and fish are the richest source of iron and therefore has to be consumed.
5) Fibre Rich Food: Grains are an important source of fibre, iron, Vitamin B and carbohydrates and can provide extra energy to an expecting woman. Fibre, iron, folate and calcium are also found in legumes, deficiency of which can lead to infections and diseases.
6) Water Intake: Doctors recommend at least eight glasses of water every day.
7) Probiotic: Consuming probiotics can reduce bad bacteria in the gut and keep you healthy.
8) Vitamins: Sweet potato is another source of vitamin A which is essential for cell and tissue growth. It also improves blood levels in the body. Vitamins found in leafy vegetables, bread, cereals, pasta, etc. are must for a pregnant woman.
9) Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Fish oil is rich in omega 3 fatty acids which help in reducing complications during delivery, though not more than one serving of fish oil is generally recommended.
10) Supplements: Your primary caregiver will recommend you a folic acid supplement while you are pregnant this helps prevent various birth defects in your unborn baby. In case you follow dietary restrictions due to religious reasons, consult your gynaecologist to see if you need some other supplements.
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