Pregnancy places unique psychological as well as physiological demands on a women’s body, and the only way of being able to handle all of it is to start with a good, healthy and nutritious diet. All the rigors of pregnancy can be handled and addressed effectively, should the woman be in a good, healthy and physically strong state. And to attain & maintain such physical fitness requires a good, healthy diet as a start.
First and foremost, one must understand that the requirement for nutrition, is irrespective of pregnancy. A woman ought to eat healthy and eat adequately, to be first able to conceive and only then can we plan about maintaining pregnancy and delivering a healthy baby.
While, it is a complete myth that pregnant women ought to consume food for two people, it is undeniable that an additional dosage of nutrition is required to meet the needs of the mother as well as the growing foetus within. And it is just not simply increasing the quantum of food intake, a pregnant woman requires specific increase in both macro & micronutrients in her diet.
Some of the key pointers for good, healthy nutrition during pregnancy would be:
- Prefer natural, low-fat foods
- Avoid processed & junk foods
- Increase consumption of fruits, lean proteins
- Drink enough water
- Take note of possible allergies and cravings
A good nutritional regime during the course of the pregnancy is advisable and beneficial for plenty of reasons. These include:
- Healthy growth of the foetus
- Adequate strength for mother
- Ability to sustain the pregnancy without difficulty
- Aids an easy & natural childbirth
- Reduces risk of excessive weight gain during pregnancy
While a nutritious diet is advisable, often many women fall prey to unhealthy dietary practices during the course of pregnancy, jeopardizing both their pregnancy term as well as their post-partum health. Some of the common misconceptions regarding pregnancy-related nutrition include:
- Doubling food consumption
- Eating large portions
- Excessively focussing on cravings
- Increasing carbs & fat consumption
- Avoiding exercise & work