Nutrition during pregnancy
One of the most nutritionally demanding periods of a woman’s life is during preganancy. Did you know that from conception until the first trimester your baby’s size has increased by two and a half million times and has completely formed all of his/her vital organs. Amazing right! As females our bodies are truly amazing so it is important we fuel our bodies to continue to support both ourself and our growing baby through this nutritionally demading period.
During this time as your baby grows your body requires more protein and nutrients – particularly iron, folate, iodine, zinc, magnesium, and omega 3’s. Ensuring your baby gets the best start possible in life is one of your biggest priorities.
Here are some simple and practical tips to optimise your nutritional levels:
- Eat a balanced diet ensuring you’re getting enough iron, folate, calcium, vitamin D, fibre, and omega 3’s.
- Exercise daily
- Get plenty of sunlight to optimise your Vitamin D (If you’re unable to get enough sun consider taking Vitamin D supplements)
- Eat a diet rich in probiotics to nourish your gut (80% of the immune system depends on the beneficial gut flora)
- Avoid industrialised food where possible
- Aim to drink abour 2.5 litres of water a day (more if exercising)
- Incorporate fresh fruit and vegetables (different types and colours), probiotic foods, legumes, wholegrains, and proteins into your diet.
- Eat organic food with no pesticides when possible
During your pregnancy there are certain foods that you want to avoid that contain harmful bacteria. These include:
- Raw meats
- Raw eggs
- Soft, semi-soft or ripened cheeses
- Unpasteurised dairy foods
- Deli meats
- Ready-to-eat seafood such as smoked salmon and smoked muscles, oysters, raw seafood.
- Drinks made from fresh fruit and/or vegetables where you’re unaware of the washing procedures.
- Cooked food that has been refrigerated for more than one day.
After giving birth, your nutritional needs are also paramount as your body recovers. It is important to prioritise your health. In fact it is essential. Accept help and nutritional meals from friends and family.