Now that you’re pregnant, it’s natural to think more carefully about what you’re feeding yourself since the foods you eat are the main source of nutrients for your growing baby.
During pregnancy, for example, you will need protein and calcium for your baby’s tissues and bones. Add to that the extra folic acid required to reduce the risk of neural tube birth defects and more iron to help red blood cells carry oxygen to your baby.
To get the best start you can, make sure you include the following pregnancy superfoods into your diet.
Enriched, whole-grain breads and cereals are fortified with folic acid and iron and contain more fiber than white bread and rice. Work whole grains into your day with oatmeal for breakfast, a sandwich on whole- grain bread at lunch and whole-wheat pasta or brown rice for dinner.
Add black beans, white beans, pinto beans, lentils, black-eyed peas, and kidney, garbanzo, or soy beans to your diet. Try them in chili and soups, salads, and pasta dishes. Besides providing protein and fiber, these legumes are also good sources of key nutrients, such as iron, folate, calcium, and zinc.
Salmon is a well-known source of omega-3 fatty acids. These good fats help promote brain development and vision in babies. Salmon also a good source of protein. Because of mercury toxicity in fish, during pregnancy limit your intake to1- 2 serves per week and take a quality supplement for improved levels.
Eggs are a versatile food and great source of protein that provides all the essential amino acids you and your baby need. Eggs contain more than a dozen vitamins and minerals. However, you should never eat undercooked or raw eggs when pregnant.
Blueberries, raspberries and blackberries are delicious snacks and taste great in pancakes or on top of your cereal. Berries are packed with vitamin C, potassium, folate and fibre.
One cup of plain, low-fat yogurt contains more calcium than milk, is high in protein, and doesn’t have the added sugar of flavored yogurts. Dress it up with fruit or crunchy, whole-grain cereal.