Pregnant? Then you know those cravings for something yummy to put in your tummy. Occasional “cheat meal” and ice cream straight out of the carton is perfectly ok. But what if you want to treat yourself (and your unborn child) to something healthy, beneficial and tasty?
I have got you covered with this list of top 5 foods to devour without fear or regret during your prenatal diet.
They are so tiny yet packed with vitamins! Your body will get vitamin B called folate, that helps neurological development of the growing brain of your future genius. So in case you have bought pills with folic acid in them, this is a great natural supplement. Apart from that, lentils are a source of protein and iron. No risk of boredom or stereotype too. They come in several colors and you can make soups, salads, stews, spreads… Get creative.
- Green, leafy veggies
Dairy products are the best source of calcium. But what if you are lactose intolerant, not a “milk person” or vegan? Green leafy vegetables such as kale, broccoli, watercress or cabbage are a way to go. They are rich in antioxidants, and folate too.
- Dried fruits, seeds and nuts
All of the above are highly nutritious and once you open a pack, highly addictive since you usually finish it in one sitting (well, I always do). Apart from being a great snack, they are a great source of dietary fibre, iron, vitamin A. Of course, it is best to eat dried fruits in addition to fresh fruits, rather than instead of them.
What are the best dried fruits? Raisins, apples, apricots, and bananas. Which ones should I consume less? Papaya, pineapple, grapes.
What are the best seeds? Chia, sunflower, pumpkin, and lotus (not spicy or salted.) What seeds to avoid? Sesame, fennel, and fenugreek.
Seeds (particularly linseed) are allegedly able to reduce the risk of tearing during childbirth, but in this case it could be useful to take a look at a more medical alternative by Aniball UK. But everything helps and linseed is definitely healthy – so go for it and be sure to keep your dose low.
And what about nuts? Go for almonds, walnuts, cashew nuts or pistachios.
Do you need to avoid some? If you are not allergic, no. Some old studies believed that consummation of nuts can increase the risk of allergies in a child, but new ones highly doubt it.
Everything depends on your health and feeling though, plus I recommend to consult the doctor about how many milligrams of a certain vitamin you should receive.
Go for wild salmon, herring or catfish. They are packed with essential omega-3 fatty acids and low in mercury (heavy metals and pollutants). The longer time the fish spent in a food chain, the higher the possibility it is a high in mercury one (tuna, shark, swordfish, king mackerel.) When in doubt, pick a freshwater over a saltwater fish.
Ok, I know it is a drink and not food but I want to give you food for thought. Water hydrates you and builds your baby to perfection. To be exact, it builds cells, flushes away toxins, helps with lactation once the baby arrives. I recommend to keep an eco-friendly reusable bottle in your sight and remind yourself to have 2 litres a day (on top of juices, milk or smoothies.) Oh, and if you find yourself out of your home, I recommend sites and apps such as Refill for the UK or Findtap in the US. These apps fight plastic bottles by providing free water refills when you show up with a reusable bottle. And a world with less plastic is a better world for the next generations.
Yummy tips on how to protect the love you carry in your tummy, right?