NUTRIENTS FOR PREGNANT WOMEN


It is important for pregnant women to pay attention on the types of food they eat as the nutrient from the food will also be absorbed by the baby.

Within 9 months of pregnancy, women will put on weight from 9 to 13 kilos. This extra weight is an indirect way of determining the baby’s health. Some women may put on more than the required weight as they tend to over eat due to the misconception of eating for two.

If pregnant women were to put on excess weight, they tend to suffer from various types of diseases and sickness like gestational diabetes and hypertension.If pregnant women were to eat less than the required amount, the baby will not be able to get the required nutrients and will affect the baby’s growth development.

A pregnant woman should consume 300 to 500 extra calories a day

It is not sufficient to only eat 3 meals a day. They should eat healthy snacks in between meals. These extra calories are needed for baby’s muscle growth and hormone development.Pregnant women should also consume extra protein. Protein food should be consumed during breakfast, lunch and dinner. Extra protein is very important for baby’s muscle growth and organ development.

Pregnant women are to consume the below mentioned nutrients as it is very important for baby’s growth:

a) Folate
Folate is a vitamin B nutrient. Folate is very important to prevent baby’s nueral
tube defect disease. It is also important for women who are trying to conceive to
consume this nutrient. Folate is found in green vegetables and citrus food, i.e.
oranges and pineapples. However folate in green vegetable are lost when it is
cooked. Therefore it is very important for pregnant women to take folate
supplement during their pregnancy period.

b) Calcium
Calcium is very important to build baby’s bones. Women who are in their 30’s
requires a daily intake of 800mg of calcium. If they are pregnant, they require an
extra intake of 200 mg of calcium. Hence a pregnant woman around her 30s
should consume a daily intake of 1000 mg of calcium.

To consume 1000 mg of calcium a day, it is required to eat 3 types of food which
are rich in calcium.

In the morning, suggested food is 2 glasses of milk and a slice of cheese.
For lunch and dinner: Suggested foods are chicken and sardines.
Note: Sardine and chicken bones are rich in calcium

c) Fibre
Pregnant women who are in their third trimester (6 to 9 months) may suffer from
constipation due to changes in hormone level and diet. To avoid this problem,
pregnant women at this stage should eat more vegetable, fruits and whole grain
products.

d) Water
Some pregnant women do not drink enough water as it will cause them to urinate
more often. This is a very bad practise as lack of water will cause constipation and
improper blood circulation. A pregnant woman should drink 6 to 8 glasses of water
a day.

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