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Healthy Eating for Pregnant Women

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Pregnant women will find healthy eating a joy and a pleasure when they shift their thinking to realize they’re no longer just eating to satisfy their own hunger, taste, or dietary needs. Now they are responsibly caring for their child and mothering their child from the moment of conception.

Eating healthy food is so important. This means veering away from alcohol, highly sugared foods, deeply fried foods and processed foods.

However, beyond just being a healthy eater, pregnant women need to be extra careful of shellfish and soft cheeses, raw, uncooked fish in sushi and to be vigilant about taking prenatal vitamins and eating foods packed with whole grains, fiber, and nutrients.

Feeding your unborn babe is so crucial for the proper development of the baby’s internal organs and brain, growth and overall health.

Also, by eating whole foods and lots of vegetables, lean meat and taking in lots of healthy fluids in the form of water, diluted juice, skim milk and lots of food with fiber, you are also helping your own digestion, colon health and easing any potential constipation problems you may experience with your pregnancy.

Extremely wonderful foods include orange juice, lentils, yogurt, papaya, skim milk, cottage cheese, dark leafy greens (like kale, spinach, Swiss Chard), colorful fruits and vegetables, walnuts.

There are so many more, but these in particular are quite high in the vitamin C, iron, protein, fiber and folic acid you and your baby need during pregnancy. Other fantastically nutrient-packed foods include eggs and salmon.

Pregnant women should increase their caloric intake by about 300 calories to help the development of their placenta, the growth of their child, and to keep their energy levels high and appropriate.

If early pregnancy results in vomiting or morning sickness, it will be very important to check in during prenatal visits to make sure iron counts and other nutritional needs are being met.

Using saltine crackers to ease nausea can be very helpful and actually help bring appetite back so that a woman can continue to eat the wholesome and nutritious foods she and her baby need during this precious time.


WebMD. Eating Right When Pregnant. Retrieved from the internet on December 7, 2011.

10 fast foods a pregnant woman could love (and five to avoid)
Retrieved from the internet on December 7, 2011

Family. American Baby. Five Foods All Pregnant Women Need
Retrieved from the internet on December 7, 2011

Aimee Boyle is a regular contributor to EmpowHER

Reviewed December 8, 2011
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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