There is a widespread misconception about the term “Eating for Two” when talking about diet for pregnant women. The vast majority will tell you that it’s just nonsense. It actually is, in a way, but only if you take it to mean eating for two fully grown adults.
That shouldn’t be the case though. You eat for two — but just enough for yourself and your growing fetus. The diet for pregnant women demands not on the amount of your food intake but on the quality. Expectant mothers should be aware of the nutritional value of what they are eating because these nutrients are what you body and your baby needs.
There are pregnant women who eat what they want, when they want, however much they want. This is because it’s already expected by everyone around them. It is much like a pregnant woman’s license because of the cravings that come with pregnancy. Everybody just sympathizes with them. This shouldn’t be the case though. Your diet during your pregnancy should be as healthy as possible because you’re not just eating for yourself anymore. What you eat also trickles down to the baby in your womb.
Here are some reminders on the nutrients you should be stocking on:
1. Carbs for calories
Carbohydrates are your energy suppliers. They have a pack of calories which keeps you going. They may sound daunting to many, especially with their bad connotations because of diet fads, but we really do need them in our daily life. You, pregnant women, need calories even more. These calories help your body keep up with the changes is undergoing to support your baby’s growth.
You don’t need twice the normal amount though — just 300 calories a day more than the usual daily requirement. This is definitely not the time to keep off the carbs.
You will find that the best source of calories would be your complex carbohydrates. This would include rice, cereal, bread, and whole grains among many other examples.
2. Protein for growth
Protein is the primary nutrient you need to help your baby grow and develop well. The best source of complete proteins is animal products. Examples of these are meat, milk, egg, yogurt, poultry and the like. Be careful with eating too much of these though, especially if you are prone to hypertension. Limit your eggs to twice or three times a week because they are rich in cholesterol.
We’ve had plenty of fear-inducing stories when it comes to fats and diets. However, we need to ingest a certain amount of fat, too, because they can help our cells grow. Not all fats are bad for you. The fats you’d want to eat though should be the good fats. This includes vegetable oils like corn, olive, safflower, and peanut oil.
4. Fruits, Vegetables and Your Vitamins & Minerals
You don’t have to think too much on these two if you’ve been making healthy eating choices in general. Eating fruits and vegetables frequently can give you what you need. Also, there are vitamins and mineral supplements given to expectant mothers throughout pregnancy to make sure they get the right amount. Though, make a point, too, to eat foods rich in calcium, iodine and iron for good measure.