Getting the right nutrition during pregnancy is vital, especially since you’re eating for two this time. So, how much should you be eating? According to experts, you don’t really require any added calories during your first trimester as long as you are following a regular healthy food plan. At the beginning of the second trimester, you can add an extra 300 calories to your regular calorie intake. In the third trimester, you add up to 450 extra calories in total.
Feeding your body with the correct nutrients can also help reduce the risk of birth defects or any other complications and help in the growth & development of a healthy foetus. Some of the key nutrients you will require are: folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin A, and vitamin B12. Naturally, you should eat a lot of foods that are rich in these nutrients. Sure, this can be hard as you will be dealing with pregnancy cravings, loss of appetite or increase in appetite, repulsion towards certain foods etc. So don’t be too hard on yourselves, Mummas. You’re doing the best you can! Here’s some of our favourite pregnancy superfoods that you can try and incorporate in your diet to make sure your body is getting all the essential nutrients.
Almonds are packed with essential nutrients, making them an extremely healthy snack for pregnant women. They are a great source of folic acid, Vitamins A, B6 and E, iron, zinc, and help in the proper development of the foetus. Soak them overnight to make them easier to digest. You can even try almond-derivatives like almond milk or almond butter.
Eggs are rich in protein, fats, vitamins and minerals. These nutrients help promote the healthy development of your baby’s brain and reduce the risk of neural tube defects. Eggs contain 70 calories, thus making sure you get park of your daily calorie requirement. Always buy fresh eggs and cook them thoroughly before eating.
Bananas are rich in iron & potassium, which can help in reducing symptoms of anemia, if you have any. They are also packed with folic acid, which is vital for your baby’s development, and other essential vitamins and minerals. Eat them as a snack to help reduce nausea and sickness, and to get an instant boost of energy. They also help in maintaining blood pressure levels in pregnant women and reducing hypertension. Pregnant women are also prone to constipation, and bananas can aid in relieving this symptom. Banana smoothies/shakes are a great breakfast option.
Lentils are a healthy source of protein and are also packed with folic acid, iron and fiber, making them a great pregnancy food. Being a healthy iron source, they also help in reducing symptoms of anemia. Eating lentils with citrus fruits (lemon) can actually help your body absorb the iron better.
Kale and other green leafy vegetables are very healthy for pregnant women. Kale is a wonderful source of fiber, which aids in digestion. It is also rich in calcium, which is important for the healthy development of your baby’s bones and teeth. It is also packed with Vitamins A, C and K that are necessary for healthy development and also help in strengthening your immune system at this time.
Do you know any pregnancy superfoods? Tell us in the comments below.