Updated: Aug 7
Fueling your body with healthy food choices can be one of the best things you can do during pregnancy. Good nutrition helps the baby grow and develop and can lead to improved long-term health for both you and your baby. In addition, a healthy diet may also reduce some pregnancy symptoms (nausea and constipation) and it helps you handle the extra demands on your body as your pregnancy progresses.
During pregnancy, the basic principles of healthy eating remain the same — get plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and healthy fats and choose drinks and foods with less sugar and sodium. Below is a quick list of pregnancy nutritional tips.
Eat clean balanced meals
Fill your diet with lean protein
Make sure to consume enough iron
Focus on eating whole grains instead of processed flour and starches
Try your best to eat foods high in folic acid like spinach, asparagus, brussel sprouts, and avocados
When you get cravings, fit them around well balanced meals instead of replacing well balanced meals.
Eat uncooked, undercooked, rare, or raw foods like: eggs, meats, or fish
Eat foods which are high in mercury
Eat unpasteurized dairy products and foods like soft cheeses and unpasteurized milk
Eat foods with extremely high amounts of vitamin A
Other important notes:
Folic acid is important during pregnancy, especially one month before pregnancy and the first three months of your pregnancy. If this is an unplanned pregnancy, don’t worry, just speak with your health care provider and begin eating foods rich in folic acid (see suggestions below).
Most health care providers will prescribe/suggest a prenatal supplement before conception or shortly afterward to make sure that all of your nutritional needs are met. However, a prenatal supplement does not replace a healthy diet. Folic acid can be found in some green leafy vegetables, most berries, nuts, beans, citrus fruits and fortified breakfast cereals
Fluid intake is also an important part of pregnancy nutrition. Follow these recommendations for fluid intake during pregnancy:
Talk to your health care provider or midwife about restricting your intake of caffeine and artificial sweeteners.
Avoid all forms of alcohol
This list is intended to provide you with a quick glance to assist you in making good nutritional choices for you and your baby’s health. It should not take the place of a conversation with your health provider to ensure that you understand dietary and supplement suggestions that meet any specific needs to you and the health of you and your baby.