Navigating the nine months of pregnancy, a mother-to-be is a superhero. Not only is her body creating another life, but she is striving to be healthy for two! Despite the stress, aches, pains, and cravings that accompany pregnancy, these wonder women might feel that it’s ok to eat whatever makes them happy. However, that happiness should derive from a well-balanced diet featuring healthy in-between snacks. Still, sometimes grabbing the right snack can be a challenge, and while you may think that eating for two allows you carte blanche to finish off a pint or two of your favorite ice cream, you really only need an additional 300 additional calories per day to eat properly for two.
The good news for pregnant women is, the number of calories they’re allowed increases as the months’ progress. For instance for a pregnant woman of average weight, 1,800 calories per day is allowed during her first trimester. By the second semester, she can consume 2,200 calories per day, followed by 2,400 in the third trimester. Keeping this in mind will assist in choosing the right type of healthy snacks. Here are five that can benefit you and baby:
- Yogurt is a great source of protein and also calcium, both of which are needed by your growing baby. Additionally, some varieties contain probiotics that guard against infections and allergies, as well as serious conditions like gestational diabetes and preeclampsia.
- Legumes are a great snack and here’s why; Folate is one of the B vitamins that obstetricians prescribe for pregnant women to take throughout pregnancy. Folate is present in legumes, which makes them a great snack choice for pregnant women. Eating peanuts, lentils, peas and other beans and nuts in between meals is a tasty, satisfying protein-packed snack. Consuming legumes during the third trimester is especially beneficial. In addition to folate, legumes also contain iron, potassium, and magnesium and have high fiber content.
- Apples are another source of fiber, but also contain vitamins A, C, and potassium. Additionally, a study indicated that children of mothers, who consumed apples, were less susceptible to allergies and asthma later in life. You’ve heard the old saying, an apple a day keeps the doctor away? There’s a good reason why the adage has lasted the test of time.
- Berries are a good snack for providing needed carbohydrates for pregnant women. Carbs should make up 50 to 60 percent of a pregnant woman’s caloric intake per day. A handful of berries goes a long way in achieving that percentage and also in delivering energy. Heavy carbs are a less effective choice for nourishment. Berries are considered to be complex carbohydrates and are more desired than processed, heavy carbs.
- Cheese is one source of much needed protein, but it also provides calcium, which is crucial for growing healthy bones. Mom needs at least 1,000 milligrams of calcium per day. Eating a single slice of cheddar cheese will provide 200 milligrams of calcium as well as deliver 20 percent of a pregnant woman’s daily requirement.
Proper nutrition is a vital element of prenatal care and can ensure a healthy pregnancy for both you and your baby. If you are looking for outstanding OB/GYN care in Syracuse, the friendly staff at University OB/GYN Associates welcomes your call and looks forward to serving you. If you have any questions about our women’s health services, please call our office at (315) 464-5162. To schedule an appointment, you can call us or use our secure online appointment request form.