Pregnant women require adequate nourishment through the gestation period to maintain good health and ensure healthy foetal development. The trick is to adopt the right kind of meal selection from all the essential food groups.

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (ACOG), a woman who is expecting should have a diet that is rich in calcium, folic acid, iron and protein.

It is very crucial to maintain the body weight at an ideal level. Gaining too much of weight can also prove critical during the time of birth and lead to complications. Read on to know about the essential food items that a pregnant lady should include in her diet.

Dairy products: There is a huge requirement of calcium during the prenatal stage. The mineral assists in the formation of strong bones and also regulates muscle and nerve function. As the baby requires a considerable amount of calcium so the mother should be fed all sorts of dairy products like milk, yogurt, cheese, etc. The doctor advises the intake of about 1000 mg of calcium per day to meet the needsImageof the growing foetus.

Proteins: The second and third trimesters are crucial stages of baby development. Hence the mother’s diet must be enriched with meat, eggs, fish, soybeans and chickpeas in this time particularly. These all contain the adequate and necessary amount of protein and iron. Lean meat such as beef, lamb and pork are also high sources of protein.

Fruits and vegetables: Fruits and leafy greens are an essential source of Vitamin C and folic acid. 0.4- 0.6 mg of folic acid is recommended on a daily basis to avoid any defect in the neural tube. Folate is an important nutrient that helps in preventing birth defects. Fruits like oranges, grapefruit, apples, strawberries; and vegetables like broccoli, tomato, Brussels sprouts, kale and spinach should be part of their daily meal.

Whole grains: Dietary plan of the pregnant woman will also depend upon her weight. Carbohydrates act as the major source of strength and energy for the mother. Whole grains such as oatmeal, quinoa, whole-wheat pasta, brown bread and brown rice are packed with fibre, vitamins and plant compounds.

An absolute no-no: One has to limit the consumption of caffeine. Ditch the coffee and sip on a variety of juices during this time. Alcohol consumption is also not recommended as it can mix with the blood and lead to unwarranted disorders in the baby. The selection of fish should also be made sensibly as fish containing high percentage of mercury that can impede the baby’s development.

During the foetal growth phase, the mother must consult the doctor from time to time. Apart from monitoring the progress, the doctor may also recommend some essential supplements and tests to stay assured. In Apollo Diagnostics, you can avail a diverse range of clinical tests and receive trusted results on time. To book your appointment, click here:

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