A balanced and nutritional diet is very important for your health at any time, especially if you are pregnant or if you are planning a pregnancy. Not all foods are safe to eat during pregnancy. Some of them may cause stomach upset and serious health complications, so it is best to avoid them.
In this article we will talk about the foods that you can safely eat during pregnancy. You don’t have to go on a special diet, but it is important to eat a variety of different foods in order to get all the nutrients that you and your baby need. If your diet during pregnancy is balanced and healthy, it will help your baby grow and develop properly. So, let’s see what is safe to eat when pregnant.
Fruitsand Vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are a great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber, so they should be a part of your diet even when you are pregnant. These foods will improve digestion and you will not have problems with constipation, which is a common problem of most pregnant women. It is recommended to eat at least five portions of different fruits and vegetables every day. You can eat them fresh, dried, frozen or canned. You just need to wash fresh fruits and vegetables before eating them.
Starchy Foods. Starchy foods such as bread, potatoes, rice, maize, sweet potatoes, oats and breakfast cereals are also necessary in pregnancy. These foods should form about a third of the food that you eat every day. Starchy foods are rich in vitamins and fiber and they are very important source of energy.
Dairy Foods. Dairy foods such as milk, yoghurt and cheese are also very important in pregnancy because they are rich in calcium and other nutrients. It is best to choose dairy foods that are low in fat, such as skimmed or semi-skimmed milk, low-fat yoghurt or reduced-fat hard cheese. Hard cheeses are the best option in pregnancy because they don’t contain too much water. It means that bacteria are less likely to grow in these cheeses. There are also soft cheeses that are safe in pregnancy, including cottage cheese, feta, mozzarella, cream cheeses and many others. It is necessary to consume two to three portions of dairy products per day. If you like soya drinks, you should opt for unsweetened versions that are fortified with calcium.
Protein Foods. It is also necessary to eat protein foods during pregnancy. You should eat lean meat and you should always remove the skin from poultry. Also, you should not add extra fat and oil when you are cooking meat. Meat has to be cooked thoroughly because raw meat may contain bacteria that may be very harmful for you and your developing baby. Deli meat is also safe during pregnancy as long as you heat it first in the microwave to kill all the bacteria. Eggs are safe in pregnancy but they have to be thoroughly cooked. Raw or partially cooked eggs can cause salmonella food poisoning.
Seafood. Many fish and shellfish are safe during pregnancy if they are cooked properly. It is recommended to eat two portions of fish a week, such as salmon, mackerel and sardines. These types of fish are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids and they help baby’s brain development. But, there are also some types of fish that you should avoid during pregnancy. These are shark, tilefish and swordfish because they are high in mercury and they may carry the listeria bacteria. Eating prawns and other shellfish in pregnancy is also safe if they are cooked thoroughly. You should avoid raw shellfish because it may contain bacteria and lead to food poisoning.
These are some of the foods that you can safely eat in pregnancy. Remember that your diet should be varied and balanced. You should avoid sugary foods such as ice cream, biscuits, crisps, chocolate, salad dressings, cakes, etc. These foods are high in fat and calories and they will lead to weight gain. Also, fatty foods may increase the amount of cholesterol in your blood, which can lead to heart disease. Instead of these unhealthy snacks, you should choose some healthier alternatives.