While pregnant you are the fetus’s sole source of nutrients. Every bite is important to its development, so it is important to choose the healthiest foods. But there is no need to panic: the important nutrients you and your baby need are available in day-to-day foods. Here is an example of some vitamins and minerals that are important during pregnancy and lists of foods rich in them.
Why is it important: this vitamin is essential to prevent defects in the nervous system of the fetus in early pregnancy and abnormal division of cells during the entire pregnancy.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy:600 micrograms a day. It is recommended to take supplement that contains 400 micrograms in pregnancy planning stage (three months before actually getting pregnant), because it requires a sufficient amount of the vitamin for the ovum creation.
What to eat: fortified cereals, enriched breads, leafy vegetables (Spinach, Mustard greens, Arugula, Lettuce, Cabbage), Broccoli, Asparagus, Orange and Pulses (Lentils, Beans, etc.).
Why is it important: this mineral is essential for fetal and infant construction of bones and in order to maintain the mother’s bone density. It may prevent high blood pressure during pregnancy.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy: 1,000 milligrams a day.
What to eat: dairy products, canned sardines (eaten with bones), Figs, yellow and green Beans, Celery, Cabbage and Okra.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Why are they important: essential for the fetus brain and vision development. It is believe that there is an association between deficiency of these fatty acids and pregnant postnatal depression. The body can not produce them himself, and the food is the only source for them.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy: not yet determined, but the general population is recommended to consume two servings of fish per week (recommendation comply with the limits of the FDA for pregnant women and nursing mothers not to eat more than 340 grams of fish per week). In addition, vegetables are rich in omega 3.
What to eat: fish like Sole, Salmon, Halibut, Cod, Tuna and Sardines, Canola oil, Walnuts, ground flax-seed and green leafy vegetables.
Why is it important: this mineral isessential for proper oxygen transfer throughout the mother or fetus body, and to the fetal brain development.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy: 27 milligrams a day. If necessary, and by blood tests, some women need iron supplements, most in the second trimester of pregnancy.
What to eat: meats (beef, turkey and chicken), fortified cereals, enriched breads, Legumes (Beans, Chickpeas, etc.), Pumpkin seeds, Quinoa, Potatoes and Spinach. It is essential to consume Iron-rich foods with food rich in vitamin C in order to improve iron absorption.
Why is it important: a mineral needed for proper division of cells and immune system activity.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy: 11 milligrams a day.
What to eat: meats (beef, turkey and chicken), fish, dairy products, Nuts and Seeds, whole grains (whole wheat, Oats) and Legumes.
Why is it important: vitamin C is needed to reconstruct the Collagen protein (the material that attach cells one to the other), increased Iron absorption from food and increase the ability of the mother’s immune system.
A study published several years ago at the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition “found vitamin C may help prevent premature birth”.
Recommended quantity during pregnancy: 85 milligrams a day.
What to eat: Pepper (especially red), Tomato, Kiwi, Citrus, Guava and Melon.
If you also wish to know what food to avoid from eating during pregnancy, please refer to the full version of the article.