Healthy Eating Guidelines For Pregnant Women
Pregnancy is an exciting, but also sensitive time for women. During this period, women need not only take care of their own health, but the health of their offspring as well. However, pregnant women need not give up eating all the food they love. All they need to do is eat smart, and ensure that their food choices are healthy ones. Here are some great healthy eating tips for pregnant women.
Watch Your Serving Size
According to nutrition experts pregnant women need an estimated three hundred extra calories each day during this crucial period. However, the extra amount of calories they require will depend on their weight before they got pregnant. Pregnant women also have to follow the appropriate serving recommendations, by talking to their health care provider about having the appropriate eating plan. Pregnant women also need to take close tabs on their serving portions, because they may be eating more than what they think.
Daily Food Serving Guidelines To Follow
Women should be careful of what they eat, and how they eat during pregnancy. They need to remember that fatty foods like chips, cookies, doughnuts and sweets like sodas and candy do not give their baby the right amount of nutrition they actually need. Here is some interesting food serving guidelines to consider.
- Pregnant women should consume at least six ounces of grains per day. An ounce of grains is equivalent to 1 cup ready-to-eat cereal, 1 small pancake, 1 slice bread and 1 small tortilla.
- 2 ½ cup serving of vegetables. A cup of vegetables is equivalent to 1 cup vegetable juice, 1 cup raw or cooked vegetables and 1 medium-baked potato.
- 1 ½ cup of fruits. A daily serving of 1 ½ cup of fruits is equivalent to ½ cup of fruit, ¼ cup dried fruit, 16 grapes or ½ cup fresh, frozen or canned fruit.
- 3 cups of milk each day. This daily serving is equivalent to 1 cup yogurt, 1 ½ ounces natural cheese, 2 ounces processed cheese and 1 cup milk.
- 5 ½ ounces of protein each day. This daily serving is equivalent to ¼ cup cooked dry beans, 1 egg, ½ cup nuts, 1 ounce of poultry, meat or fish, and a tablespoon peanut butter.
Apart from considering the daily serving guidelines mentioned above, pregnant women should also take regular doses of folic acid. Folic acid helps prevent serious birth defects and spinal cord defects. Women of child-bearing age need to take at least 40 micrograms of folic acid each day before and during pregnancy. Foods that are rich sources of folic acid include enriched grain products, green leafy vegetables, orange juice, beans and vitamin-fortified breakfast cereals.
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