The ABC of Antenatal Nutrition – Guest Post – Laura Clark

Being pregnant can often make you focus on what you’re eating more than at any other time in your life as you take on the responsibility for someone else’s nutrition as well as your own!

However, eating well during pregnancy and getting the best nourishment for you and your baby can often feel quite a challenge. You may be suffering from some unpleasant symptoms or simply be too tired to focus on consuming the perfect diet every day.

There is also a wealth of information available which can feel a little overwhelming. Let’s keep it simple and start with A B C:

A is for Apple

You’ll be saying that phrase a lot in 9 months time so might as well start now! Fruit makes a great snack between meals; it’s digested slowly by the body preventing dips in your blood sugar which can leave you feeling tired and lacking in energy. It also gives you and your baby essential vitamins and antioxidants. These can help protect you against infection and give you a greater sense of well-being throughout your pregnancy. Fresh, tinned or dried fruit can give your diet more variety and dried fruit in particular is a great source of iron, another really important nutrient for pregnancy.

B is for Balance

It’s all about quality, not quantity in pregnancy so at each meal time you need to tick off 3 things: – a source of carbohydrate for example pasta, wholegrain bread or cous cous, a source of protein for example fish, meat, pulses or eggs and some fruit or vegetables. Eating foods from the major food groups at each meal ensures you take in a balance of essential nutrients and sustains your energy for longer throughout the day.

Whether you choose something simple like a chicken salad sandwich and a piece of fruit or something more substantial like a cottage pie with green beans, it doesn’t matter as long as all 3 food groups have been included.

C is for Calcium                                                             

Calcium – This is one of the most important nutrients in pregnancy. Babies know what they need so will take calcium from your bones if there’s not enough to go around! Aim for 3 serves of dairy a day – a yoghurt, slice of cheese and a glass of milk all count as a serve. Dairy is also an excellent source of protein and fat soluble vitamins so don’t be afraid of this food group; just choose lower fat alternatives for healthy pregnancy weight gain.

For further advice and support contact Laura who can arrange a consultation package to suit you.

Article by Laura Clark – Head of LEC Nutrition

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