Nutritional do’s and don”ts for pregnant women!

You’ve just received the good news that a little one is on the way! Congratulations, you’re pregnant!

Pregnancy is beautiful, magical and even empowering! Whether you are elated or in a wee bit of shock, remember pregnancy is an immense physical, psychological and emotional experience whatever the circumstances surrounding it.

Once it sinks in that you are on your way to motherhood you may find yourself thinking, what”s next? Expect a lot of changes in your lifestyle which include some dietary modifications because your growing baby is absorbing everything you”re eating.

You will be snowed under with advice from family, friends and yes, even complete strangers about what foods are safe and what aren’t during pregnancy, enough to confuse anyone.

First and foremost you’ll need protein and calcium for your baby’s tissues and bones, extra folic acid to protect against neural tube birth defects and iron to help red blood cells carry oxygen to your baby. Although it is imperative that you discuss your diet with your doctor, we at MedGuru give you some dos and don’ts that will help get you started!

Foods to eat during pregnancy:-

Whole grains
Try incorporate whole grains that are fortified with folic acid and iron into your daily diet. Eat oatmeal during breakfast, whole-grain bread at lunch and brown rice for dinner.

Leafy greens, fruits
Increase intake of green veggies broccoli and spinach, food items like muesli and fruits like Blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries which are a good source of iron that a woman”s body needs to produce all the blood needed to supply nutrition to the placenta.

Apart from being rich in protein, eggs provide amino acids, vitamins and minerals, including choline, which is good for baby”s brain development. Refrain from eating under-cooked or raw eggs as they may be tainted with bacteria.

Sea food
Fish, touted for omega-3 fatty acids that help the baby”s brain development and eyes is a good meal choice during pregnancy. It is absolutely safe to consume up to 12 ounces of low-mercury fish, such as salmon per week. Try it grilled, broiled, or as a salad.

Low-fat yogurt
Low-fat yogurt is rich in calcium, high in protein and it sans the added sugar of flavored yogurts. Blend it with fruit into smoothies or sprinkle it with nuts or muesli for a tasty crunchy snack.

Foods to avoid during pregnancy:-
Liver or liver-containing products such as liver pâté, liver sausage or haggis should be eaten only occasionally as they contain large amounts of vitamin A which may cause damage to the embryo.

Avoid drinking too much of coffee, tea and colas as caffeine based beverages may affect the growth of baby.

Skip unpasteurized cheeses, blue-veined cheeses like brie or camembert to avert the possible risk of transmission of infectious diseases such as Listeria. However, varieties such as cheddar and mozzarella can help in meeting your calcium requirements.

Edited by Neelam Goswami on 05-03-2014.