Top 10 Superfoods during Pregnancy
Eating for 2 can be pretty stressful, given the different views of other peoples. It`s fish important or contains too high amounts of mercury? Do you need meat for proteins or it`s a too fat of a product? Are eggs good or they contain too much cholesterol?
These things make you give up easily and look for a chocolate bar in your purse? But you probably don`t do this yet, especially if you are here and read this. There are a lot of ways through which to find out if you and your baby ingest too many nutrients. Here, experts discuss the top of the most recommended foods during pregnancy. You don`t need to like or eat all these foods, but choose your favorite ones to offer your pregnancy a well balanced diet.
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It`s surprising to see what you get from one single egg and only for 90 calories, says Elisabeth Ward, doctor, nutritionist and author of “expect the Best, Your Guide to Healthy Eating Before, During and After Pregnancy.”
Besides the 12 vitamins and minerals, eggs contain an important quantity of proteins, essential during pregnancy. The fetus`s cells grow exponentially and every cell is made of proteins, explains Dr. Ward. In addition, as a pregnant woman, you need a high intake of proteins in your organism.
Eggs contain a large quantity of compounds of salt, which help in developing the fetus and brain health, while they also prevent defects of embryos. Some eggs even contain Omega 3 fatty acids, which are important for the development of nervous system and vision.
Are eggs to high in cholesterol? Not necessarily, says Dr. Ward. It seems that if you eat saturated fats, then this will do more harm to cholesterol than to eat cholesterol directly from foods. And while eggs are rich in cholesterol, they actually have a low amount of saturated fat, about 1.5 g per egg.
Healthy women with a normal level of cholesterol can consume 1 or 2 eggs a day as part of a well balanced diet and low in saturated fats.
Do you need more reasons? Eggs are cheap, light, fast to cook and complex. When you are too tired to cook a meal, a few boiled eggs or a quick omelette is the ideal solution.
Not only that salmon is a good with high levels of proteins, but it`s also an essential source of Omega 3 fatty acids. And unlike swordfish, mackerel or sharks, salmon has a low amount of methyl/mercury, which is a component that can harm your baby`s nervous system.
Keep in mind that for both salmon as well as fish that are low in mercury, like those from canned fish or cod, it`s recommended an amount that won`t exceed 200 g a week, to avoid ingesting a large amount of mercury.
White beans, lentils, colorful or little beans – there are so many possibilities from which to choose. Beans contain the highest amount of fiber or protein of all vegetables.
You already know that proteins are important while pregnant, but you don`t yet realize that fibers may become your ally during this period. While expecting a child, gastrointestinal tract weakens and this may lead to constipation or hemorrhoids. Fibers may prevent the occurrence of such issues.
In addition, foods that contain fibers tend to be rich in nutrients. This is especially true for beans, because they contain a rich source of iron, folic acid, calcium and zinc.
Sweet potatoes take the orange color from carotenoids, pigmented plants that are coated with vitamin A in our bodies.
Even if the consumption of foods rich in vitamin A (found in animal sources like meat, milk or eggs) can be harmful, carotenoids are different. They are converted in vitamin A as much as needed, so that you won`t be forced to reduce the consumption of fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin A.
Sweet potatoes are also an important source of vitamin V, folic acid and iron. And just like eggs, they are cheap and complex. Cook them and keep them for a small snack later.
Popcorn Kernels and other Corn
Yes, you read correctly! Popcorn is a grain. People loved it when they found out this. Whole grains are important during pregnancy, as they are rich in fibers and nutrients, including vitamin E, selenium, phytonutrients – compounds of plants that protect cells.
However, don`t stop at popcorn! There are plenty of other grains, from oats to whole bread. Fluffy, packed, quinoa is one of the best. Quinoa is a food rich in nutrients, especially proteins, making a delicious meal.
You don`t like fish or eggs, but you don`t want to lose the amount of Omega 3 fatty acids necessary to your fetus`s development. Try nuts! They are one of the most important sources of Omega 3 fatty acids. A hand of nuts is a great choice for a small snack or added in salads.
This kind of yogurt has a double amount of proteins compared to normal yogurt, making it one of the favorite foods of pregnant women. And any type of yogurt is an important source of calcium, which is vital during pregnancy. If you don`t consume enough calcium, the resources of calcium that you have stored in your organism will transform to fat, draining the calcium found in bones and teeth.
Green Vegetables and with Leaves
Spinach, cabbage, lettuce or other vegetables are an important source of vitamins, nutrients, including vitamins A, C and K, as well as folic acid. They are an essential source that helps improving vision.
Meat is an excellent source of quality proteins. Look for white meat without fats! Especially when you look for red meat, look at slices of 95% – 98% fats. Beef and pork are among the types of meat that besides the fact that they are rich in proteins, they contain essential nutrients as well.
Don`t eat semi-prepared meat or fast-food, unless they are sufficiently cooked or boiled enough. There`s a risk of picking up bacteria and parasites, like listeria monocytogenes and salmonella, and passing them to your baby.
Vegetables and Fruits
A varied consumption of fruits and vegetables, green, red, orange, violet or white, will ensure you and your baby a diversified amount of nutrients. Each group of color ensures different vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
You may also want to read Tomatoes during Pregnancy: Health Benefits & Nutritional Values!
Another advantage related to the consumption of fruits and vegetables is that during the last stages of pregnancy, the baby tastes foods that you eat through the amniotic liquid. So, if you expose your child to a variety of fruits and vegetables while he`s in your belly, then you`ll increase the chances for him to recognize and accept these flavors later.