Pregnancy is one of the most amazing experiences a women has the opportunity to go through. It can also be a very stressful time as your body is changing and growing and you have someone else counting on you to provide a safe place for them to develop. Adequate and proper nutrition are extremely important during pregnancy and can have significant effects on both mother and baby.
Many women are afraid of gaining too much weight during pregnancy and getting ìfat.î Pregnancy is not a time to worry about dieting and losing weight. Adequate weight gain is very important for a healthy pregnancy.
The recommended weight gain during pregnancy is based on your pre-pregnancy weight:
• Underweight: 28-40 pounds
• Normal weight: 25-35 pounds
• Overweight: 15-25 pounds
Weight gain is usually slow in the first two trimesters and starts speeding up in the last trimester, as this is the time when your baby is gaining weight and getting ready to come out into the world.
A very common saying we hear from pregnant women is, ìI’m eating for two!î This is true in that you are eating to provide nutrition for both yourself and your baby; however, it does not mean that you should consume two times the amount of calories you were before you became pregnant. A general recommendation is to consume 100 to 300 extra calories a day during pregnancy.
A balanced diet is necessary during pregnancy, meaning eating the proper portion of protein, fat and carbohydrates, as well as fiber, vitamins and minerals. This can be achieved by eating a variety of foods each day and eating foods from all the food groups: meat, dairy, fruit, vegetables, grains. It is also imperative that you take a daily prenatal vitamin during pregnancy; it can also be helpful to continue taking your prenatal vitamins after pregnancy while breast-feeding.
Helpful Nutrition Tips to Follow During Pregnancy
• Eat foods that contain folic acid to help prevent neural tube defects — green leafy vegetables and legumes
• Avoid alcohol
• Limit caffeine to less than 300mg per day
1 oz espresso = 40-75mg
8 oz coffee = 95-200mg
8 oz black tea = 15-60mg
8 oz green tea = 25-40mg
8 oz iced tea = 26mg
How to maintain proper nutrition during pregnancy
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