Eating for two? Here’s what to eat for a happy and healthy nine months!

Being pregnant is an exciting time filled with happiness and waiting, but let’s not forget those strong urges to eat certain foods, whether they’re sweet, salty, or even pickled. I have a friend, let’s call her Sonali who really wanted to eat ice cream with olives on top when she was pregnant. Sounds odd, right? It made us all laugh, but it also got us talking about how interesting and sometimes funny pregnancy food cravings can be.

Figuring out what to eat when you’re pregnant can feel a bit complicated, especially with cravings. But it’s really important to know about good nutrition during pregnancy for both the mom and the baby. This article is here to help expecting moms understand what foods they need and which ones to avoid, making sure both mom and the baby have a healthy start.

When you’re pregnant, your body is doing the amazing job of growing a whole new person. This means you need more of certain nutrients than you did before. For example, you need more iron now- Your baby needs lots of oxygen to grow strong and healthy, which means you need to have more iron so there’s enough oxygen to share. Calcium and Folic acid are super important too, as well as vitamins and minerals.

You might have heard the saying “eating for two” when it comes to pregnancy. It sounds like it’s time to double up on everything you eat, right? Well, it’s not exactly like that. While it’s true you’re feeding both yourself and your growing baby, it doesn’t mean you need to eat twice as much food. In fact, the extra amount of food you need isn’t as much as you might think. In the first few months of pregnancy, you might not need to eat any extra calories at all. Your body is efficient and does a great job of supporting your baby’s early growth without needing more food. But as your pregnancy moves along, you will need a bit more energy. By the second and third trimesters, you might need around 300 to 500 extra calories a day. That’s about the amount in a small snack or a light meal, like a bowl of cereal with milk and a piece of fruit, or a sandwich. The key is to make these extra calories count by choosing nutritious foods that are good for both you and your baby and is more about quality over quantity than the other way around. So, remember, when they say, “eating for two,” it’s more about eating smarter, not necessarily eating a lot more!

Eating a balanced diet during pregnancy is super important too- and that includes fruits and veggies, proteins, whole grains, healthy fats, and dairy (or substitutes if you are lactose intolerant!). It’s also important to drink plenty of water every day. But- how much water is enough water?! A good goal is about 8-10 glasses of water a day. This is about 2 liters, or half a gallon. But remember, if it’s really hot outside or you’re exercising, you might need to drink even more water to stay hydrated. Your body will let you know if you’re not drinking enough by making you feel thirsty, so listen to your body! Remember, a balanced diet doesn’t mean you have to eat perfectly all the time. It’s okay to have a treat now and then. The goal is to make sure that over the course of a day or a week, you’re getting a good mix of all the different types of foods your body needs.

When you’re pregnant, there are some foods that are advised to be skipped, for the safety of both you and your little one such as: raw/undercooked eggs (Salmonella alert!), certain types of seafood, unpasteurized milk and cheese and deli meats. Aside from these common foods you should avoid, if you’re ever unsure about a food, it’s best to ask your doctor.

Meal prepping during pregnancy is the new to-be-mama hack, so creating meal plans during pregnancy can help make sure you’re getting the right nutrients for you and your baby. And during pregnancy, having some quick and healthy snacks ready to go can be a lifesaver, especially on those busy days or when you need a little energy boost. These snacks can vary from your unique pregnancy cravings to healthy variations of your favorite junk food!

During pregnancy, eating a variety of healthy foods is the best way to get the nutrients you need. But sometimes, even with the best diet, you might need a little extra help from supplements to make sure you and your baby are getting enough of certain important nutrients, ranging from folic acids to calcium and vitamin D. Also, mamas- remember that talking to healthcare providers, like your doctor or a nutritionist, is a super important step when you’re pregnant. Every pregnancy is unique, and the advice you get can be tailored just for you and your baby.

Navigating nutrition during pregnancy can feel like a big task but armed with the right information and a little planning, you can make great choices for both you and your baby. And to all the pregnant mamas out there, know that you’re doing an amazing job. Pregnancy is a time of wonder, challenge, and immense love so lay your trust in your body’s incredible ability to nurture and grow new life. May this journey be filled with joy, health, and lots of love! We’re with you every step of the way, cheering you on and sending you all the positive vibes for a happy and healthy pregnancy!

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