Pregnancy, a time where a complete balanced nutrition plays a key role in maintaining the mothers and the baby’s’ health!! One must be well aware of the kind of foods to be included for a perfect growth of the baby. Let’s have a look at the different food groups that are a “MUST” during this crucial time…
FRUITS AND VEGETABLES
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One of the most important food groups that cannot be neglected! They contain a lot of important minerals and vitamins, like Vitamin C, Folic acid, that are a must during pregnancy. Hence, include foods like citrus fruits, grapefruit, broccoli, tomatoes, all greens etc. A daily requirement of at least 70 mg of Vitamin C and 0.4 mg of Folic acid is recommended (to avoid neural tube defects). Hence, include a minimum 2-4 servings of fruits and 4 or more servings of vegetables per day.
CEREALS AND GRAINS
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The perfect source of energy during pregnancy are our healthy and homely grains and cereals. Include a combination of them to avail the benefits of all of them. Whole grains and cereals include a variety of nutrients like fiber, a range of vitamin-B and iron. Some of the fortified ones also have Vitamin D in them. Depending on the dietary requirement, you can include 6-10 servings of cereals in your whole day.
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Protein are a must for your baby, especially in the 2nd and 3rd trimester. Non vegetarian sources are good sources of protein in terms of quantity as well as quality. Besides, this, they are also rich sources of iron which helps to carry oxygen to the fetus. You can include, meat, poultry, eggs, and fish. However, remember to EXCLUDE fishes which have a higher MERCURY CONTENT in them. You can include 2-4 servings of proteins in the day.
MILK AND MILK PRODUCTS
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One of the richest sources of calcium and proteins, milk becomes a staple food during pregnancy. A daily requirement of 1000 mg of calcium is recommended. Your baby, too needs adequate calcium for its growth and development. Inadequate calcium from the diet will ultimately lead to loss of calcium from muscles and bones, leading to conditions like osteoporosis and joint pains. Include a minimum of 4 servings of dairy products during the day, in the form of milk, curd, buttermilk, paneer, cheese etc.
Remember, apart from the nutrients through diet, certain vital supplements (pre natal and during pregnancy) are a must. Please consult your doctor about these to ensure a complete balance of all nutrients at all times during these crucial nine months!
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