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Balanced Diet during Pregnancy

Balanced Diet during Pregnancy

by: Dr. Surinder Kaur Gambhir
Sr. Consultant - Obstetrics & Gynecology Paras Bliss, Panchkula

Good nutrition is thought to help balance mood swings and it may improve labor and delivery as well. The nutritional changes that occur prior to pregnancy must be individualized based on your medical status weight and eating habits. Hence the importance of a balanced and nutritional meal is there. It is important to eat well for a healthy baby.

A well-balanced nutritional diet in pregnancy should include-

  1. Protein
  2. Vitamin C
  3. Calcium
  4. Fruits and vegetables
  5. Whole grains
  6. Iron rich foods
  7. Adequate fat
  8. Folic acid

A simple way to satisfy your nutritional needs during pregnancy is to eat a variety of foods from each group every day. The following tips can help guide you when you are making food choices.

  • Make one half of your plate as fruits and vegetables.
  • Switch to skimmed milk or 1%milk.
  • Make one half of your grains as whole grains.
  • Eat fish 2-3 times a week and choose lean meat and poultry.

Vegetarians can get protein from wide variety of plant based foods such as nuts, seeds and soya products.

  • Limit foods with empty calories like candies, chips and sugary drinks.
  • Take a vitamin supplement which contains 600 micro gram of folic acid and 27 mg of iron.

Whenplanningyourmealremembertoaddsnackswhichagoodwaytogetextracalories. Pick snacks that have right nutrients and low in sugars and fat. Fruits cereals and yogurt are healthy snack choices.

Nutrition education and counselling is a widely used therapy to improve the nutritional status of women during pregnancy.

Strategy includes-

  • Promoting a healthy diet.
  • Promoting adequate weight gain through sufficient and balanced protein and energy intake.

WHO recommendations

Counselling should be done to pregnant women and non-pregnant about healthy eating and physically active during pregnancy is recommended for pregnant women to stay healthy and to prevent excessive weight gain during pregnancy, in under nourished population, nutrition education on increasing daily energy and protein intake is recommended for pregnant women to reduce the risk of low birth weight neonates.

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