With so much conflicting information that comes from multiple sources, eating for two during the most significant nine months of your life may seem like a nerve-cracking responsibility.
Every would-be mum wonders that what should she eat during the pregnancy and what are the best foods for baby brain development. Everyone knows that your body requires an ideal intake of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to boost your baby’s health.
In fact, one may need to eat about 400 additional calories each day to support the baby’s growth and development. But, where should those calories come from?
If you are pregnant and are in a dilemma over what to eat and what not to eat, then here’s a list of foods to eat during pregnancy that will help you gain healthy calories and optimum nutrition to support, your body’s and your baby’s nutritional needs.
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Here are the top 10 superfoods which you must include in your daily diet during the pregnancy to ensure the health and well-being of you and your baby.
Salmon is one of the best food items for the baby’s physical and mental development. Exceptionally rich Omega-3 fatty acids and with low levels of methylmercury, Salmon is the best fish to eat during the pregnancy.
It not only boosts your child’s physical and mental health but is good for your mood. But don’t each more than 12 ounces a week.
The dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt and cottage cheese are the best dietary sources of calcium and protein, which pregnant women need to support the growing needs of their fetus.
Yogurt is rich in probiotics, which support the digestive health of pregnant women. Also, probiotic consumption during pregnancy reduces the risk of several complications such as allergies, vaginal infections, gestational diabetes and preclampsia.
Lentils and Beans
Bean and lentils not only enable the pregnant ladies to get enough protein, which is very important for the physical growth of the baby, but also are a rich source of fiber.
During pregnancy, the gastrointestinal tract slows down a bit and puts the women at a risk of haemorrhoids and constipation. The fiber from the beans and lentils, helps in preventing and relieving these problems.
Sweet potatoes are exceedingly rich in fiber, folate and carotenoids, the plant pigments which are transformed into vitamin A by our bodies whenever required.
Though the pregnant women are advised to avoid excessive consumption of vitamin A, as it may affect the baby’s normal development, but carotenoid is different. It’s not Vitamin A, instead, it is converted into Vitamin A whenever our body needs it.
Foliate supports a baby’s growth while fibre helps the pregnant women in preventing a lot of gastrointestinal ailments.
Whole grains are quite vital during pregnancy as they are not only high in fiber and various nutrients subsuming phytonutrients, selenium, and vitamin E.
You can choose to eat oatmeal, nutty tasting quinoa, barley or even popcorn depending on your preferences. All of them will offer the similar benefits.
Dark Leafy Vegetables
Dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, swiss chard, spinach, kale, etc. are loaded with nutrients and vitamins A, K and C, as well as folate. All these nutrients are particularly imperative for pregnant women.
The vitamins are also vital for the growth of healthy skin and hair.
One exception is broccoli, which is not a leafy vegetable, but offers a similar set of benefits. Extremely rich in protein, broccoli juice can be very beneficial for you and your baby when you are expecting.
Colorful Fruits and Vegetables
The colourful fruits including mango, apple, blueberries, strawberries, plums, beetroot, carrots, raspberries, orange etc. are rich in diverse minerals and vitamins.
Another significant advantage of eating the fruits and vegetables is that the babies are able to taste what you are eating during pregnancy through their amniotic fluid. So, if you eat a variety of fruits and vegetables during pregnancy, there are high chances will recognise and thus, accept these flavours after growing up.
Being an excellent source of high-quality protein, the well-cooked lean meats including chicken, pork, and beef offer the required amount of protein, which you need to support healthy growth and well-being of your child.
However, ensure that the meat is well cooked because undercooked or raw meats may pass parasites or bacteria to your baby.
An avocado can be regarded as a superfruit as it is exceptionally rich in monounsaturated fatty acids. Apart from that, these are also a rich source of Vitamin C & E, copper, potassium, vitamin K and folate.
The healthy fat present in avocados helps in developing the skin, brain and the tissues of the baby while the folate prevents the neural tube defects.
Also, the high fiber content of avocados supports the healthy functioning of body organs.
Water is the magical liquid that helps pregnant women in multiple ways while supporting the healthy growth of children. It’s very important to stay hydrated during pregnancy to avoid any issues such as anxiety, tiredness, headache, bad memory, and gastrointestinal problems.
The pregnant women are at a high risk of UTIs (Urinary Tract Infections) and consuming enough water will help in flushing out any infectious elements and toxins from the body, giving you natural protection against milder infections.
Drink some water every hour, and consume at least 1.5 liters to 2 liters of water every day during pregnancy.
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Apart from the above mentioned specific food items, in general, milk, fruits, and vegetables are considered as the best sources of energy and nutrition for pregnant women, and thus, these should be a vital part of your daily diet. But, at the same time, one should be very careful about which Indian fruits to eat during pregnancy and which ones to avoid.
Simply put, every pregnant woman needs to make a wise choice and select healthy food items. The aforementioned pregnancy foods to eat list will help you to eat well during the pregnancy.