Author: Shannon Miller LifestyleAuthor: Shanan M. Loe, MD, F.A.C.O.G., St. Vincent’s OB/GYN
Trying to maintain a healthy diet during your pregnancy can seem like a daunting task.
Sometimes it seems like you are craving the most unhealthy foods you can think of. Sometimes its hard to eat anything if you are struggling with morning sickness.
Here are some nutritional tips to remember that can help you maintain a healthy pregnancy diet:
- Pregnant women should try to consume a nutritious diet by eating a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and proteins. Avoid processed foods which are often high in sodium, preservatives, and saturated fat as much as possible.
- Pregnant women should avoid alcoholic beverages and limit caffeine consumption to less than 200 mg per day (1-2 cups coffee/per day) or eliminate caffeine completely if possible.
- Pregnant women should avoid consuming any raw or undercooked meat, shellfish, or poultry during pregnancy. Also, deli meat and processed meat such as hot dogs should be heated until steaming before eating.
- Pregnant women should AVOID certain types of fish that may contain high levels of mercury: Shark, Swordfish, Tilefish, and Mackerel. Other types of fish (Tuna, Salmon, etc.) are a good source of omega 3 fatty acids which promote healthy brain development in babies. Limit consumption to 12 ounces (3 servings) per week because all seafood may contain some mercury.
- Pregnant women should NOT consume unpasteurized cheese or milk. (The FDA has great resources for this!)
- Super snacks for moms on the go: raw vegetables (carrots, broccoli, red/yellow peppers, etc.), fruits or dried fruits, nuts such as almonds or cashews, nut butter with whole grain crackers, string cheese, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese.
- A prenatal vitamin and DHA supplement if recommended for all pregnant women.
- If you have allergies, dietary restrictions, or if you are vegetarian, talk to your health care provider about your diet during pregnancy. You may need to take additional supplements during pregnancy.
Remember: when in doubt when you are deciding what will be in your pregnancy diet, just ask! Read the labels of all foods you eat or ask your grocer if you are unsure about what is in something!
Disclaimer: The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions.