What do you need to eat for a healthy pregnancy

What do you need to eat for a healthy pregnancy
Healthy eating is especially important during pregnancy and breast feeding to ensure mum and baby are receiving adequate amounts of nutrients for optimal growth and development. There are some important nutrients, including some particular vitamins and minerals, that are needed in pregnancy and wherever possible these should be provided by a balanced diet.

The following are the top tips:
• Base meals on starchy foods such as potatoes, bread, rice and pasta, choosing wholegrain where possible
• Eat fibre-rich foods such as oats, beans, peas, lentils, grains, seeds, fruit and vegetables, as well as wholegrain bread and brown rice and pasta
• Start the day with breakfast as it is a good time include some starchy foods such as cereals or toast
• Eat at least five portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables each day, in place of foods higher in fat and calories
• Dairy – Include 2-3 times a day, yogurt, milk, cheese, good source of calcium, protein
• Beans/Lentils/Eggs/Fish/Meat – 2-3 times a day, good source of iron, protein
• Limit intake of oil and spreads
• Eat as little as possible of fried food, drinks and confectionery high in added sugars (such as cakes, pastries and fizzy drinks); and other food high in fat and sugar (such as some take-away and fast foods)

There are two nutrients that all pregnant women should take as a supplement as it may be difficult to get enough from the diet: folic acid and vitamin D.

FOLIC ACID
Folic Acid is important during pregnancy to help prevent Neural Tube Defects (NTD) such as Spina Bifida. Food sources of folic sources are:
• Broccoli
• Brussel sprouts
• Liver (not during pregnancy)
• Spinach
• Asparagus

VITAMIN D
Vitamin D is essential for healthy bones and teeth because it helps to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body

Good food sources include:
• Oily Fish (e.g. herring, mackerel, salmon, pilchards, sardines)
• Eggs
• Some low-fat spreads and breakfast cereals may also have vitamin D added

Andriana xx

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