The first few weeks of your pregnancy is an exciting time for the entire family. Expect your relatives and family members to flood you with tips about how make the nine-month journey stress free and healthy, but they will also be giving you various tips of what you should and shouldn’t eat.
You do not just eat for two people, but you have to eat right; that means maintaining the right balance of essential vitamins and minerals that will keep you and your baby healthy. During the first trimester, you will have to increase your daily intake of certain food groups. For example, pregnant women will be advised to take more food rich in iron, calcium, zinc, folate, and fiber. Generally, you should have 3 to 5 servings daily of vegetables; 3 to 4 servings of fruits daily; 3 daily servings of dairy; 2 to 3 servings daily of protein; and 3 servings daily of whole grains.
Know Your Food
When it comes to fruit, always go for fresh although canned, frozen, and juices are also fine if there are no alternatives. You must, however, include at leas one citrus fruit in your diet. For vegetables, increase your intake of leafy greens and make sure they are always fresh from the market. Good dairy sources can come from milk, cheese, yogurt, and fortified soy milk. Get your daily dose of whole grains in the form of cereals, crackers, and bread, while healthy protein should come from lean meat, fish, poultry, seeds, nuts, and lentils.
Don’t Eat More
The point is to increase the essential vitamins and minerals, not increase the serving of each meal. You will not be needing the extra calories until later in your pregnancy, but you will need more folic acid, protein, and vitamins A and D on your first trimester. Supplements can help augment your diet but consult your doctor first before taking any vitamins or medications during pregnancy. Stay within the daily recommended allowance and use only the products recommended by your doctor.
You will need a slight increase of your caloric intake, but you should be careful where you get it from. Ideally, pregnant women will need an extra 300 calories, but this can change depending on your current health condition. You should also look for food rich in complex carbohydrates along with fiber to avoid tummy issues. The best sources for carbohydrates are legumes, beans, pasta, whole wheat bread, and vegetables.
The best indication that you are eating healthy is by looking at the variety of colors on your plate. Have as many greens, yellows, and reds when it comes to vegetables. For fruits, pick citrus, avocado, banana, apple, watermelon, mango, and grapes. Most seafood are fine if you do not have allergies, but you need to cut down on deep sea fish like shrimp, king mackerel and sword fish. You should also avoid anything raw or undercooked, soft cheeses, raw sprouts, non-pasteurized milk, caffeine, and sweetened beverages. If you are feeling nauseous and don’t like the food set before you, pick tummy-friendly food that will not give you diarrhea.