Motherhood is one of the most beautiful time periods in any woman’s life but before this beautiful time period, every woman should take care during her pregnancy. One of the most important things is a balanced diet for pregnant women.
What a woman drinks and eats during pregnancy is her infant’s main source of nourishment. So, several pediatricians and experts recommend that a mother-to-be choose a variety of healthy diet to provide the important nutrients an infant needs for growth and development.
A healthy and balanced diet is an important part of a healthy lifestyle at any time, but especially important if a woman is pregnant or planning a pregnancy. Healthy eating keeps a woman feeling great and gives your baby the essential nutrients they need in utero.
Overall, aim for a balanced diet for pregnant women, with an appropriate blend of all the five food groups including;
- Vegetables and legumes
- Bread and cereals
- Meat, poultry, fish, and alternatives
- Milk, yogurt, and cheese
Basically, the foods containing protein help the infant grow. There are several sources of protein such as fish, chicken, meat, eggs, milk, nuts, cheeses, beans and peas.
Top 5 Balanced Diet For Pregnant Women:
1. Fruit and Vegetables
Eat lots of fruit and vegetables because these provide minerals and vitamins, as well as fiber, which helps in digestion and prevention of constipation. Eating a variety of vegetables and fruit a day which can be fresh, canned, frozen, dried or juiced. Always wash these veggies and fruits carefully before cooking or consuming.
2. Starchy Foods (carbohydrates):
Starchy foods are the important source of vitamins and fiber as well as are satisfying without receiving too many calories. They include bread, breakfast cereals, rice, potatoes, pasta, noodles, maize, oats, sweet potatoes, yams, millet, and cornmeal. These foods can be included in every meal. Eat wholemeal instead of
Sources of protein include meat, fish, poultry, beans, pulses, eggs, and nuts. You can include a portion of protein in your everyday meal.
Dairy foods like milk, yogurt, and cheese are important for a balanced diet because they contain calcium and other nutrients that the infant needs. Always try to choose a reduced fat variety wherever possible.
Always avoid alcohol or alcoholic beverages because there is no safe level of alcohol which can be consumed during pregnancy. Whether you are planning a pregnancy, already pregnant or breastfeeding, consuming alcohol can harm the unborn baby.
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Limit Foods that are High in Sugar, Fat, and Salt:
These foods with high sugar, fat, and salt mainly include all spreading fats, oils, cream, chocolate, salad dressings, crisps, biscuits, pastries, cake, puddings, ice-cream, and fizzy drinks. A pregnant woman should eat only a small amount of these foods.
Sugar, fat and high salt contains high calories without providing any type of other nutrients and can contribute to obesity, weight gain, and tooth decay.
These foods increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood which leads to increase the chance of developing heart disease. Try to cut down on saturated fat, and in place of these foods try to eat foods rich in polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fat.
Healthy Snacks in Balanced Diet For Pregnant Women:
If you get hungry between meals, don’t eat those snacks that are high in fat and sugar, like sweets, crisps, biscuits or chocolate. Instead, the above options, choose from the following nutritious snacks including;
- Sandwiches or pitta bread filled with grilled chicken, grated cheese, mashed tuna, salad, and salmon or sardines.
- Salad vegetables like carrot, celery or cucumber
- Low-fat yogurt
- Ready-to-eat apricots, prunes or figs
- Vegetable soups
- Unsweetened breakfast cereals
- Milky drinks or unsweetened fruit juices
- Fresh fruit
- Baked beans on toast
All the above suggestions are about the balanced diet for pregnant women. As we all know that “A healthy body is the root of a healthy life.”