Eating a nutritious and balanced diet for you and your baby during pregnancy is very important. You must include a healthy balance of carbohydrates, fat, protein and fiber in your prenatal diet. There are number of strong evidence that a person’s health can be directly determined by the mother’s diet in pregnancy including whether particular nutrients were taken at certain times. The modern thinking is that good nutrition in pregnancy may reduce a baby’s future risk of diseases such as heart disease, obesity and diabetes.
In addition to this, good nutrition in pregnancy also improves your health and helping you to deal with the requirements of pregnancy. Getting the right balance of carbohydrates, protein, fiber and fats in pregnancy is simple, since the ratios are the same in pregnancy as at other times. A diet that contains plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and good proteins and fats will automatically contain the proper mix of nutrients.
All carbohydrates are broken down into glucose, the body’s main source of fuel for you and for your baby which passes easily across the placenta. There are two types of carbohydrates, simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates like fruits, honey, table sugar and maple syrup provide a quick energy boost because they are digested and absorbed rapidly. Simple carbohydrates often are high in calories, so it is best to limit your intake of simple carbohydrates. Avoid foods with added sugar and sugary drinks. Complex carbohydrates include starches and dietary fiber. It provides longer lasting energy than simple carbohydrates as it takes your body longer to process them. Complex carbohydrates are starchy vegetables such as potatoes and corn, bread, rice, some fruits and pasta.
Protein provides essential nutrients for the growth of the baby and repair muscles and other tissues. Protein is found in beef, pork, fish, poultry products, milk, cheese, and other dairy foods, beans, peas and seeds. If you’re vegetarian, you can get protein in a protein-containing snack, nuts, seeds, nut butters, and soy products such as tofu. Vegetarians who include dairy products in their diets also can get required protein from milk and eggs. Include protein sources that contain less saturated fat such as lean beef and pork, skinless chicken, tofu, low-fat cheese and yogurt and skim milk. Seeds, nuts and fish contain healthier unsaturated fats but consumption of some fish should be limited since they contain mercury, which could be bad to your baby.
Our body required a certain amount of fat to function normally, which contain vitamins and contribute to the healthy development of cells. Some types of fats known as omega-3 fatty acids are vital for the development of brain. Fats are also necessary for the function of the immune system, help in blood clotting and help our body to use vitamins A, D, E, and K. Always go for healthier unsaturated fats, found in foods such as fish and some types of oil.
Fiber is found in plant foods and it can’t be digested by our body instead passes relatively unchanged through our digestive system. It can help to control constipation. We should eat about 25 grams of fiber daily. Fruits, vegetables and whole-grain products are good sources of fiber.
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