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Foods That Contains The Necessary Nutrients During Pregnancy

April 06, 2017


Pregnancy is a stage in womanhood where the food you eat affects another person. It is a period that requires adequate care, nourishment, and adequate nutrients as inadequate nutrients result in malfunction and health issues in the fetus, giving birth to handicaps and neurological disorder.

The fetus needs adequate nutrition from conception to birth and during the breastfeeding period to attain good health growth. During this period you need healthy diets to promote your baby’s growth and development.


 Lot of healthy calories are required which you can get in healthy diets and not foods with empty calories such as those found in desserts, soft drinks, and candies. Below are list of nutrients you need during your pregnancy period.

    Calcium – its major function is for strong bones and teeth, it also improves your muscular, nervous and circulatory systems. It regulates your body fluids and helps to build your baby’s bones and tooth buds.
   
     Dairy products are rich in calcium; other non-dairy sources are turnips, green cabbage, broccoli, salmon, cereals, and kale and white beans. You are required to eat it at least three daily servings.

    Protein – it enhances the growth your breast, uterine tissues and helps to increase the supply of blood during pregnancy. It is seen as an important nutrient needed for the growth of your baby during the pregnancy period as lack of protein can result in the fetal tissues and brain been affected.

     Examples of foods that is high in protein are tofu, fish, eggs, beans, peanuts, pork, lean meat, poultry foods, soy products and seeds. It is advisable for a pregnant woman should avoid the intake of the following foods: shark, limit white, tilefish, king mackerel, and swordfish.

    Folic acid and folate – folate consists of B vitamin properties that prevent defects of the neural tube, birth defects, abnormalities in the spinal cord and brain of the fetus.

    Folic acid comprises of the synthetic form of folate present in fortified foods and supplements which when taken helps to reduce the risk of premature birth during the pregnancy period.

     It is important that all pregnant women should inculcate the habit of taking daily vitamin supplement which contains folic acids to prevent complications during this period.

      Examples of foods that contain a high amount of folic acid are citrus fruits, peas, dried beans, legumes and leafy green vegetables. Also, folate can be found in fortified foods such as bread, cereals, and pasta.
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      Iron – protein present in the red blood cells that helps to carry oxygen to your tissues is also known as hemoglobin which is produced in your body from an iron intake. All pregnant women need the secretion of this hemoglobin in high quantity than a non-pregnant woman because its deficiency can result in anemia.

    Aside from this, it can also lead to premature birth, postpartum depression and low birth weight but sufficient iron in the body helps the adequate growth of your baby, increase your blood volume and the placenta.

    During pregnancy, your baby needs iron to make more blood so as to aid the secretion of hemoglobin so as to supply your baby enough oxygen which is very important for your baby’s survival.  

Taking iron from animal products such as meat is better as it can be absorbed by the body easily, but in cases where you intend to take iron from plant sources and supplements, you need to pair them with a food or drink high in vitamin C for easy absorption by your body.

 Although, calcium is necessary for all pregnant women but its high intake decreases the absorption of iron in your body, so when taking iron supplements with orange juice try to avoid calcium fortified foods.

  Better still for easy absorption of iron in your body in this case try to combine plant-based sources of iron with vitamin C foods such as cereal with strawberries or mandarin with spinach salad etc. examples of foods high in iron are fish, cereals, beans, spinach, lean red meat, vegetables, poultry and corn meal.

5  Iodine – this is important during pregnancy for mental development of your baby, cretinism and normal thyroid function, but funny enough during this period the iodine level in women are always very low due to taking foods that do not contain adequate iodine. It is advisable that all pregnant women endeavor to take prenatal vitamins which are high in iodine.

    Vitamin C – this helps to enhance quick healing of wounds, metallic processes, development of bones and teeth in the fetus during pregnancy. Examples are melon, peppers, lemon, potatoes, and kiwi, mango, and tomato, orange, and strawberries.



     Vitamin D – it helps to enhance the strength of your baby’s teeth and bones and its deficiency can result in rickets. Examples are fortified milk and orange juice, also fatty fish such as salmon is a great source of vitamin D.

     Supplements – even after having a healthy diet you also need to ask your health care provider for supplements which contains some key nutrients.


    This is because at times you may skip your normal meals which contain the necessary nutrients you need during pregnancy but with the help and regular intake of supplements, it helps to replace the nutrients lost in some meals we take. 

    Your health care provider might recommend some supplements due to the state of your health such as having chronic health issues or being a strict vegetarian.

   If you intend using herbal supplements it is advisable to consult your health care provider for this as some herbal supplements might be dangerous to you and your baby’s health.

     Water – during pregnancy you need to take lot of water as hydration is very important during this period and it is needed during and after birth for normal functioning of the body system.

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