How Important A Pregnant Woman’s Diet Is To Her Child’s Health In Future
Having a healthy balanced diet is crucial for maintaining optimal health throughout your life. And for women of childbearing age, good diet and nutrition are crucial in preparing her body for the demands of pregnancy.
During pregnancy, a woman’s micronutrient and macronutrient requirements increase and it is crucial for her to consume food that will give her both the energy and necessary nutrients for maintaining her and her developing baby’s health.
Here’s why a pregnant women’s diet is important to her unborn child’s future health
1. Ensures a Healthy Weight For Your Baby
Ensuring that you are eating the right amount of calories as well as eating nutritious food will promote healthy weight gain in your baby.
Babies with a low birth weight are more prone to suffering from health-related issues that could lead to potentially serious complications than those born at optimal weight. Also, low birth weight can set babies up for a lifetime of disabilities or health complications.
2. Reduce the Incidence of Birth Defects
During pregnancy, it is important that you eat only natural and unprocessed foods in order to avoid harmful substances from entering the body.
Exposure to particular chemicals or a lack of certain nutrients may lead to birth defects for your unborn child, As a matter of fact, a deficit of key nutrients like folic acid has been associated to higher rates of birth defects like spina bifida.
3. Sets the Stage for Good Health
What you eat while you are pregnant can also influence your baby’s development and what she or he eats later in life. If you tend to eat poorly, then not only could your baby develop a taste for foods that are low in nutrition, but they might also have an even greater risk for developing serious diseases such as obesity and diabetes.
Eating a nutritious diet while pregnant, on the other hand, can promote healthy development in your baby which should stay with him or her throughout their life. Plus, you will also encourage your little one’s own healthy eating habits.
Goals for Healthy Eating During Pregnancy
* Eat a variety of foods in order to get all the nutrients you need. The recommended daily servings should be:
3 servings of protein source (nuts, eggs, fish, poultry or meat)
x4 servings of dairy products
4 or more servings of vegetables
2 – 4 servings of fruit
6 – 11 servings of grains and bread
* Choose foods that are high in fiber such as rice, pasta, beans, cereals, whole-grain bread as well as veggies and fruits. If you are a picky eater and does not like the sight of green leafy or crunchy veggies, a healthy soup preparation should do the trick and will enable you to ingest the necessary nutrients without fuss.
* Eat and drink calcium-rich foods and dairy products and make sure that you are consuming at least 1000 – 1300 milligram of calcium daily.
* You will need at least 220 micrograms of iodine per day in order to aid your unborn child’s nervous system and brain development. You can get it from a variety of dairy products like yogurt, cheese (particularly cottage cheese) and milk as well as cooked navy beans, baked potatoes and limited amounts (about 8 – 12 ounces every week) of seafood like shrimp, salmon, and cod.
* You need to have at least 3 servings of iron-rich foods like beans, spinach, lean meats and cereals every day to make sure you are getting the minimum required amount (27 milligrams) of iron daily.
* Choose one or more good sources of vitamin C daily, like mustard greens, tomatoes, green peppers, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, papaya, honeydew, strawberries, grapefruits, and oranges. A pregnant woman requires 80 – 85 milligram of vitamin C daily.
* Choose at least 1 source of vitamin A every other day, such as cantaloupe, apricots, beet greens, turnip greens, water squash, pumpkins, and carrots.
* Choose a good source of folate daily, such as veal, leafy veggies, and legumes. Pregnant women require at least 0.64 milligrams of folate daily in order to help prevent neural tube defects. You can also try folic acid supplements.